The matrix organizational form is only desirable if there is a real need for its added complexity. Making the Matrix Work After examining the disadvantages and problems of working in a matrix organization, one may view the problems as insurmountable. What these large projects called for was an organizational structure that could respond quickly to interdisciplinary needs without disrupting existing functional organizational structures. In the coordination model, staff members remains part of their original departments or the departments they would most likely belong to under a functional or product structure. While the mechanistic school of thought stressed efficiency and production through control, organic models emphasized flexibility and adaptability through employee empowerment. A team is a group of employees—ideally with complementary skills and synergistic efforts—working toward a common goal. This phenomena may be indicative of top management not understanding the matrix or the matrix may just be finding its proper place.
In the matrix, power struggles are a logical derivative of the ambiguity and shared power that has been built purposefully into the design. However, it also may evidence itself by backbiting, foot-dragging and project sabotage. Team effectiveness is a major determinant of the financial performance of franchised locations and company-owned coffeehouses. This represented the development of the pure project organization. The responsibilities listed in table 1 can therefore only be used as indicators as to where the major responsibilities lie. What do you do with several thousand people when the project is completed? Matrix structures also allow for specialization that can both increase depth of knowledge and assign individuals according to project needs.
Disadvantages of a Divisional Structure Some disadvantages of this structure include operational inefficiencies from separating specialized functions—for example, finance personnel in one division do not communicate with those in another division. Disadvantages of a Modular Structure On the other hand, more internalization and more tightly coupled structures can produce better communication and intellectual property gains. Functional organizations are segmented by key functions. Moreover, they often can respond faster to market or customer demand while decreasing the lead time to produce a new product. Matrix organizations group teams in the organization by both department and product, allowing for ideas to be exchanged between various members.
They sought to create organizations that mimicked machines, and usually departmentalized workers by function, such as finance and production. Strong Matrix Organization Strong matrix equates to a strong project manager. These divisions address product lines. From our two decades of experience with organization design, we tend to side with the latter. The organizational structure would then be used to establish a pattern within the organization on matters such as hierarchy, authority, division of work, and relationships and connections between and among the different functions. Division between the top and bottom tiers of the hierarchy Lower level employees will hesitate to react to some decisions made by higher management for fear of shaking up the hierarchy. Indeed, mechanistic organizations often stifled human creativity and motivation and were generally insensitive to external influences, such as shifting markets or consumer needs.
Most discussions about matrix organizations usually quickly devolve into a debate between two sides: those who love to hate the matrix, and those who hate to love the matrix. However, teams are most visible at the lowest organizational levels, particularly at the coffeehouses. Soft-wiring relies on more informal, organic, voluntary, temporary, or one-off instruments, such as an ad-hoc multi-dimensional task force, an annual corporate planning cycle, an advisory council, a central coordination function, or a company-wide knowledge management system. They simultaneously organize part of a company along product or project lines and part of it around functional lines to get the advantages of both. The project manager has a full-time role, has a full-time project management administrative staff under him, and controls the project budget. In general, matrix structures are assumed to be most appropriate for larger corporations that operate in unique or fast-paced environments; a coal-mining company, for example, might be less likely to benefit from a matrix structure than would a pharmaceutical company.
Generally, however, managers of functional areas and divisions report to a single authority, such as a president or vice president. Modularization within organizations leads to the disaggregation of the traditional form of hierarchical governance into relatively small, autonomous organizational units modules. A feedback mark is an above-diagonal mark when rows represent output. Disadvantages of a Matrix Structure Combining two organizational structures into the matrix type solves a lot of problems. Overview of the Network Structure An organization can be structured in various ways that determine how it operates and performs.
The cells along the diagonal are typically used to represent the system elements. The lines on the chain of command are blurry, further confusing the employees since they do not have a clear idea on who is in charge or in control. The matrix is thus a multi-dimensional structure that tries to maximize the strengths and minimize the weaknesses of both the project and the functional structures 25. Whenever there is a real need in the field for coordination across organizational silos, the managers concerned will find each other. Most large complex organizations exist today at some level of matrix management, especially those with several business units and global operations. In the late 1800s and early 1900s, during the U.
Matrix organization is blend of functional and projectized organization. A good working relationship with and ready access to top management is essential for resolving big problems and removing obstacles. You will probably have to report to the media department manager, your functional chain of command boss — the head of your department. Some form of project management was obviously needed, and not being willing to bear the expense of making each project a little empire of its own, the matrix was a natural evolution in management thinking. These competitive advantages are essential in interacting with the industry environment, which involves the strong force of competition shown in the. Individual functional departments have great difficulty in solving very large problems because of a failure to view the total system and a tendency to sub-optimize or solve the problem within their particular discipline.
You have been asked to investigate what organizational structure your competitors use and how the choice affects their ability to manage projects successfully. Likewise, basic organic structures were too departmentalized i. The strong matrix structure has a lot of the characteristics of a projectized organization. The idea of the Matrix Organization Structure is to enable faster response and adaptation to a complex world. In the electronics company example mentioned above, application of this model would have the employees from the departments working together in a cross-departmental manner, without leaving their respective departments. He must ensure that technical decisions are made on schedule.
This permanent set-up creates accountability, coordination, and perhaps most of all, continuity for the product as a whole, while enabling staff, who generally have a direct supervisor who is not a product manager, to be flexibly assigned where they are needed most. Another way of stating the roles is: the project manager is responsible for the overall integration of the total project system and the functional manager is responsible for technical direction in his discipline. Retrieved on March 2, 2010. Under such an arrangement there is typically a worldwide product manager, a local or worldwide functional manager, and a country specific manager; however, many variations of the international matrix exist. In the example, an employee from the Finance Department will also become a member of the Sales and Marketing Department.