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Organizational Structure

Organization Theory
Social Structure
The duality of structure:
Constrains the choices about activities
But structures are created by the activities
Enabling interaction:
Can be seen as fixed immovable
Or as a moment of everchanging
interactivity
Two purposes
Social structure is giving a picture of:

The differentiation between work
activities
And at the same time indicating the
major challenges of integrating the
same activities
Organization Chart
The Org. Chart is a representation of:
The hierarchy of authority:
the vertical structure or
the chain of command
The division of labour:
the horisontal coordination or
the work specialization
Chain of Command
Unbroken line of authority that links all
persons in an organization.
Shows who reports to whom.
Associated with two underlying
principles.
O Unity of Command.
O Scalar Principle.
Work Specialization
Tasks are subdivided into individual
jobs.
Division of labor concept.
Employees perform only the tasks
relevant to their specialized function.
Jobs tend to be small, but they can be
performed efficiently.
Many organizations are moving away
from this principle.
Authority
Formal and legitimate right of a manager to
make decisions, issue orders, and to allocate
resources to achieve organizationally desired
outcomes.
Authority is distinguished by three
characteristics:
C Authority is vested in organizational positions,
not people.
C Authority is accepted by subordinates.
C Authority flows down the vertical hierarchy.
Span of Control
The number of employees
reporting to a supervisor.
Traditional view, seven or so per
manager.
Many organizations today, 30 or
more per manager.
Generally if supervisors must be
closely involved with employees
span should be small.
Tall versus Flat Structure
Span of control used in an organization
determines whether the structure is tall or flat.
Tall structure has a narrow span and more
hierarchical levels.
Flat structure has a wide span, is horizontally
dispersed and fewer hierarchical levels.
The trend has been toward wider spans of
control.
Tall vs. Flat Structure
Five structual alternatives
O Vertical functional approach. People are grouped
together in departments by common skills.
O Divisional approach. Grouped together based on a
common product, program, or geographical region.
O Horizontal matrix approach. Functional and divisional
chains of command. Some employees report to two
bosses.
O Team-based approach. Created to accomplish specific
tasks.
O Network approach. Small, central hub electronically
connected to their other organizations that perform vital
functions. Departments are independent, and can be
located anywhere.
Structural Design

Structural Design