Job Designs are the most needed necessities of organizational structure. It is termed as a building block of organizing. It is also known as Job Analysis. In simple words, job designs are the particular specifications for a unique task or activity which is performed on the regular basis or repeated regularly.
It is a degree in which the necessary skills to achieve certain specific goals, are broken into different categories among the masters of the relative field.
With the help Work Specialization, each task of the organization is divided into separate jobs, for example, the finance related work will be assigned to the one who has a specialization in the field of finance. Work Specialization is also known as Division of Labor in the terminology of business. The following are a few features of the work specialization or job designs.
- The idea of job designs was given by Adam Smith and can be traced back.
- Job Designs can be an effective way to utilize the efficiency of the workers as per their skills. Probably, the workers would love their jobs and put additional efforts when the job is according to their skills and approach.
- There are many advantages of work specialization including the improvement in the skills of an employee regarding performance of a specific task, extra efficient employee training, use of particular machinery for several tasks, and encouraging the employees for special inventions.
- Work Specialization was observed to be a good source of endless productivity improvement and it was beneficial at a few points.
- Job Designs or Work specialization turned the human dis-economies such as fatigue, lowered productivity, stress and poor quality of work.
Approaches to Job Designs
The Job Simplification is a process of modifying, designing and configuring jobs; in the result the jobs holders will have a little amount to perform repetitive and narrow activates. There are four approaches of Job Designs.
- The basic concept of job simplification was introduced by top economists, i.e. Adam Smith and Frederic Taylor.
- Workers get interchangeable and the training of new workers becomes easier than before.
- One of the best advantages is to obtain major production efficiencies.
- If carried on too far, then it will be a disadvantage, as the job satisfaction may get destroyed by repetitive, narrow and boring jobs. In the result, the firm will become inflexible to satisfy the various needs of customers.
The second approach of job designs is departmentalization. Departmentalization is a division of professionals into units and then units into departments as well as larger units. It is performed in order to hit the target and achieve various major goals of an organization. Further, the following are a few features of departmentalization.
01- Departmentalization can be termed as the overall pattern of the design of the organization.
02- The following four are the major patterns of the departmentalization and are defined precisely.
- As per Functional Structure, the job groups are divided into units and then into departments according to their skills, expertise and nature of work such as accounting, marketing and so on.
- As per Divisional Structure, jobs are grouped into units, according to similar markets or products.
- The Hybrid Structure of Departmentalization is a combination of both, divisional and functional structures. A few jobs are grouped as per functions basis, whereas the rest are grouped by markets or products.
- The last pattern of Departmentalization is the Matrix Structure, which superposes a smooth plain bunch of divisional reporting connections on hierarchical functional structures.
Types of Departmentalization
There are many major advantages and disadvantages that come under each type of the four common patterns of departmentalization.
1. Functional Structure
It is a pattern of grouping or departmentalization in which jobs are grouped regarding the main area of functions or specialized area. The following are advantages, disadvantages and a few circumstances under which the departmentalization is appropriate or necessary.
Advantages of Functional Structure
The following are a few advantages of Functional Structure
- Encouragement of obtaining in-depth expertise.
- Employees get concise and simple path to a successful career and limited to their functional area.
- More efficient use of resources is performed.
- Due specialized people and specific equipment, there is possibility of economics of scale.
- Facilitation of interdepartmental coordination.
- Constitution of competitive advantage by developing specific technical abilities.
Disadvantages of Functional Structure
There are a few disadvantages of functional structure that are stated below.
- Slow feedback time regarding several multifunctional problems because of coordination problems.
- Possible delays by the top management to resolve major conflicts and issues among multiple departments.
- Expected hurdles because of sequential tasks.
- Unrestricted view of needs of the department or organization due to over specialization.
- Difficulty in measuring the performance due responsiveness of a few functions regarding organizational results.
- Very narrowly training of managers in the single department.
Circumstances under which Functional Structure is more Appropriate
- Small or medium size of the organization
- Relative services and products are limited in number and a limited number of the homogenous group of clients or customers.
- Stable environment of divers and large organization.
2. Divisional Structure
In this pattern of departmentalization, the units are grouped on the basis of services, products or markets. Besides, Divisional Structure is also known as “self-contained structure”; it is because every division comprises emphatic functional resources that requires to achieve own or different goals with no association or reliance with other divisions. The following are the three main forms of divisional structure that differ as per rationale and also the divisions are formed on the basis of rationale.
Product Division: – Such division that is created to focus on a single product or services or sometimes, for a group of similar products or services.
Geographic Division: – The division that is formed to serve across a specific geographic area.
Customer Division: – To provide services to particular clients or customers, customer division is created.
Advantages of Divisional Structure
- Quick reaction to certain changes in the environment.
- Simplified interaction between functions.
- Every division may focus on specific or its customers only.
- Influential divisional goals.
- Easy measurement of performance.
- Possible training of managers regarding general management skills.
Disadvantages of Divisional Structure
- Usually the duplication of resources occurs in every division.
- Extraordinary or in-depth or brief expertise may require to be sacrificed.
- Competition of divisions for limited number of resources.
- Restriction of innovations to a single division.
- Divisional goals may become dominant over organizational goals.
Mostly, the divisional structure is used in large-scale businesses or organizations where there are great differences between services or products, geographical fields and customers.
3. Hybrid Structure
It is such a pattern of departmentalization, which contains units of both above mentioned forms, i.e. functional and divisional structures. It is called Hybrid because it covers a mixture of two patterns at a same level of management. To obtain benefits from both functional and divisional, it is used by many large organizations. Further clarification of the reason behind using a combination of two structures is stated below.
To gain benefits from utilization of resources, efficiencies, in-depth expertise or economies of scale, Functional departments are formed. While on the other hand, divisional departments are formed to obtain benefits by concentrating on markets, products or services.
Advantages of Hybrid Structure
- Possibility of alignment of divisional and corporate goals.
- Probable achievement of economies of scale and specialized expertise in substantial functional areas.
Disadvantages of Hybrid Structure
- Departments and divisions may face certain conflicts.
- Focus of large organization in the development of excessively large staff across the corporate level functional departments.
- Slow response in exceptional conditions.
Best Use of Hybrid Structure
- When any organization meets environmental uncertainty created by the divisional structure.
- When an organization needs functional efficiency or expertise.
- When the organization possesses enough resources to justify the structure.
4. Matrix Structure
This structure of departmentalization superposes a set of divisional reporting connections over a functional structure classified according to specific criteria. In the matrix structure, the organization also possesses a divisional and functional structure at the same time. Violation of unity-of-command principle occurs because in a matrix structure, employees have to report to two bosses instead of one. There are four structural stages from which an organization that adopts a matrix structure has to go through.
Stage 1: – It can be called as a traditional structure, often functional structure that works according to the unity-of-command principle.
Stage 2: – It is a temporary cover in which certain managerial positions are made in order to control the issues with finite duration, especially when it involves performing coordination around various functional departments.
Stage 3: – At this stage of matrix structure, the managerial Integrator positions get permanent, that is why it is termed as permanent cover.
Stage 4: – It is a mature matrix stage where all the bosses comprise an equal power.
The horizontal integration enhances as an organization goes through the four stages of matrix structure.
Advantages of Matrix Structure
- Decentralization of decision making
- Strength of horizontal coordination
- Improvement of environmental monitoring
- Quick responses to environmental changes
- On demand addition or resignation of functional specialists in certain projects
- On demand allocation of support systems to projects
Disadvantages of Matrix Structure
- Increase in administrative costs
- To individual employees, lines of responsibility and authority may not be clear.
- Increase in possibilities of conflict
- Professionals might get occupied in advance with internal relations at the cost of project goals and clients.
- All decisions may change into group decisions or joint decision with the lack of gross efficiency.
- If top management needs full control or lack of interpersonal skills occurs, then reactions to change can be slowed.
Conditions in which Matrix Structure is often Appropriate
- The effective pressure of the environment that focus on both divisional and functional dimensions.
- The unpredictable demands of the organization that are changing make it effective to have a great ability for coordinating activities and processing information quickly.
- Shared Resources have pressure.
Factors to Consider for a Successful Matrix System
- To support the collaboration, the overall organizational environment/culture may require to get changed.
- Special training for managers may be needed, particularly in interpersonal relations.
Besides, there are two new types of organizational structure that have merged with the rest of the forms along with grabbing particular interests of several organizations. The patterns are: the networked structure and the process structure.
The Process Structure: – In this type of departmentalization, the positions are grouped into a team process where the responsibilities are given from the beginning to the end regarding the particular workflow or process. The process structure is also known as the horizontal organization.
The Networked Structure: – It is a form of organizational structure where functions are given out to other firms as per contract or agreement basis and are coordinated via the use of IT networks. The networked structure is also called as the virtual corporation, because it performs operations virtually.