Building Blocks of Organizing
1. Job design
A. Job design is an essential part of
1. Job design
is the specification of task activities, usually
repeated on a regular
basis, associated with each particular job.
a. Task activities need to be grouped in reasonably logical ways for
b. The way the jobs are configured influences employee motivation.
2. Work specialization
is the degree to which the work necessary to achieve
organizational goals is broken down into various jobs.
In Work specialization
the tasks in an organization are divided into
separate jobs. Another term for this is
division of labor.
1. Work specialization can be traced back
to the writings of Adam Smith.
2. Work specialization was seen as a way to make the most efficient use
of workers’ skills because
workers would be placed in jobs according to their skills and paid
3. Other advantages of work specialization included improvement in
employees’ skills at performing a
task, more efficient employee training, and encouragement of special
inventions and machinery to
perform work tasks.
4. Work specialization was viewed as a source of unending productivity
improvements. And it was—
up to a certain point.
5. The human diseconomies from work specialization included boredom,
fatigue, stress, lowered
productivity, poor quality of work, increased absenteeism, and higher
B. There are four approaches to job design.
1. Job simplification
is the process of configuring or designing jobs so
holders have only a small number of narrow, repetitive, activities to
a. The concept of job simplification was championed by economist Adam
Smith and by Frederick Taylor
b. Training new workers becomes relatively easy and workers become
c. The advantage is that major production efficiencies may be gained.
d. The disadvantages are that, if carried too far, job satisfaction may
destroyed by narrow, repetitive, boring jobs and the firm may become too
inflexible to serve customers with varying needs.
Types of Departmentalization
is the clustering of individuals into units
and units into departments and larger units
in order to facilitate achieving organizational goals.
1. An organization design is an overall pattern of departmentalization.
2. There are four major patterns of departmentalization.
a. The functional structure groups jobs into units based upon similarity
expertise, skills, and work activities, e.g., marketing, accounting.
b. The divisional structure groups jobs into units according to the
of products or markets.
c. The hybrid structure combines aspects of both the functional and
divisional forms, with some jobs grouped into departments by functions
and other grouped by products or markets.
d. The matrix structure superimposes a horizontal set of divisional
relationships onto a hierarchical functional structure.
Assessing Structural Alternatives
A. Each of the four most common types of
departmentalization has major advantages and
B. Functional structure
is a type of departmentalization in which positions
according to their main functional (or specialized) area.
1. Typical functional form of organization has several major advantages.
2. The functional form of organization has several major advantages.
a. In-depth development of expertise is encouraged.
b. Employees have clear career paths within their function.
c. Resources are used more efficiently.
d. Economies of scale may be possible because of specialized people and
e. Intradepartmental coordination is facilitated.
f. Specialized technical competencies may be developed and may
a competitive advantage.
3. The functional form of origination has several disadvantages.
a. Response time on multifunctional problems may be slow due to
b. Major issues and conflicts between departments may have to be
by top management, with resultant delays.
c. Bottlenecks due to sequential tasks.
d. Over specialization may lead to a restricted view of the department’s
the organization’s needs.
e. Performance may be difficult to measure because several functions are
responsible for organizational results.
f. Managers may be trained too narrowly in a single department.
4. The functional form of departmentalization is more appropriate under
a. The organization is small or medium-sized.
b. There is a limited number of related products or services, or a
homogeneous set of customers or clients.
c. The organization is large and diverse, but the environment is stable.
C Divisional structure
is a type of departmentalization in which positions
are grouped according to
similarity of products, services, or markets.
1. Divisional structures are also called “self-contained structures”
division contains the major functional resources it needs to pursue its
with little or no reliance on other divisions.
2. The three major forms of divisional structure differ according to the
forming the divisions.
a. Product divisions
are divisions created to concentrate on a single
product or service or at least a relatively homogeneous set of products
b. Geographic divisions
are divisions designed to serve different
are divisions set up to service particular
clients or customers.
3. Divisional structure has several major advantages.
a. Divisions can react quickly to changes in the environment.
b. Coordination across functions is
c. Each division can focus upon serving its customers.
d. The division’s goals can be emphasized.
e. Performance is more easily measured.
f. Managers can be trained in general management skills.
4. Divisional structure has several disadvantages.
a. Duplication of resources in each division often occurs.
b. In-depth expertise may be sacrificed.
c. Divisions may compete for limited resources.
d. Expertise across divisions may not be shared.
e. Innovations may be restricted to single divisions.
f. Divisional goals may take priority over overall organizational goals.
5. The divisional structure is likely to be used in large organizations
differences exist among products or services, geographic areas, or
D. Hybrid structure
is a form of departmentalization that adopts
parts of both functional and
divisional structures at the same level of management.
1. Hybrid structures are adopted by large organizations to gain the
functional and divisional structures.
a. Functional departments are created to take advantage of resource
utilization efficiencies, economies of scale, or in-depth expertise.
b. Divisional departments are usually created to benefit from a stronger
focus on products, services, or markets.
2. The hybrid structure has several advantages.
a. Corporate and divisional goals can be aligned.
b. Specialized expertise and economies of scale can be achieved in major
c. Adaptability and flexibility may be achieved in handling diverse
service lines, geographic areas, or customers.
3. The hybrid structure has several disadvantages.
a. Conflict may arise between departments and divisions.
b. Hybrid organizations tend to develop excessively large staffs in the
corporate-level functional departments.
c. There may be a slow response to exceptional situations requiring
coordination between a division and a corporate functional department.
4. The hybrid structure is best used under particular conditions.
a. The organization faces environmental uncertainty best met by a
b. The organization requires functional expertise and/or efficiency.
c. The organization has sufficient resources to justify the structure.
is a type of departmentalization that
superimposes a horizontal set of divisional
reporting relationships onto a hierarchical functional structure.
1. An organization with a matrix structure has a functional and a
at the same time.
2. Employees who work in a matrix organization report to two “bosses,”
unity-of-command principle is violated.
3. Organizations that adopt a matrix structure usually go through
a. Stage 1 is a traditional structure, usually
a functional structure, which
follows the unity-of-command principle.
b. Stage 2 is a temporary overlay in which managerial integrator
created to handle issues of finite duration that involves coordinating
across functional departments.
c. Stage 3 is a permanent overlay in which the managerial integrator
positions become permanent.
d. Stage 4 is a mature matrix, in which matrix bosses have equal power.
4. As an organization passes through the matrix stages, horizontal
increases at the cost of greater administrative complexity. The matrix
organization has several advantages.
5. The matrix form of organization has several advantages.
a. Decision making can be decentralized.
b. Horizontal coordination is strengthened.
c. Environmental monitoring is improved.
d. Responses to environmental changes are quickly made.
e. Functional specialists can be added to or resigned to projects as
f. Support systems can be allocated to projects as needed.
6. Matrix designs have several disadvantages.
a. Administrative costs are increased.
b. Lines of authority and responsibility may not be clear to individual
c. Possibilities of conflict are increased.
d. Individuals can become preoccupied with internal relations at the
of clients and project goals.
e. All decisions may become group decisions, leading to gross
f. Reactions to change may be slowed if interpersonal skills are lacking
top management fights for control.
7. Matrix designs are usually appropriate when the following three
a. The considerable pressure from the environment that necessitates a
simultaneous and strong focus on both functional and divisional
b. The demands placed on the organization are changing and
making it important to have a large capacity for processing information
and coordinating activities quickly.
c. There is pressure for shared resources.
8. Research indicates some of the factors that may be necessary to the
success of a
a. The organizational culture may need to be changed to support
b. Managers may need special training, especially in interpersonal
F. Of particular interest are two new types of organizational structure
that have recently emerged: the
process structure and the
1. A process structure is a type of
departmentalization which groups positions into process team
which are given beginning-to-end responsibility for that process or that
specified work flow. The process
structure is sometimes called the horizontal organization.
2. The networked structure is a form of organizing in which many
contracted out to other independent firms and coordinated through the
information technology networks. Sometimes the networked structure is
virtual corporation because it performs as virtually one corporation.