The differences between a horizontal structure and a vertical organization are considerable, … Does chemistry workout in job interviews? Org Chart Creator provides the best org charting service. 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In effect the CEO added a third layer to the management hierarchy.To better manage growth and diversification of the firm, he made the hierarchy taller. As a result of information overload, managers might suffer the constraints imposed by bounded rationality. In tall hierarchies there is more turf (more centers of power and influence) and thus more voices arguing against change. REVIEW QUESTIONS: suggested answers. The phenomenon is familiar to anyone who has played the game “telephone.” In this game players sit in a circle; somebody whispers a message to the next person, who then whispers the message to the next person, and so on around the circle. Third, decentralization permits greater flexibility—more rapid response to environmental changes. As this example illustrates, growth in the number of layers in a hierarchy is driven by the size of an organization and the number of different activities it undertakes. Consider a firm that manufactures components in California and performs final assembly in Seattle. Instead those decisions are decentralized to local marketing managers, who are more in tune with the German market. New, emerging organizational structures differ from the traditional ones. Vertical differentiation The location of Centralization decision making responsibilities with in the structure of organization Decentralization IM@ 2011 The business was a small factory that made wood products for the construction industry, such as doors, window frames, and stairs. Robbins (1990), who summarizes structure into complexity, cen-trality, and formality. One cause of inertia in organization is that to protect their turf and perhaps their jobs, managers often argue for the maintenance of the status quo. The organization consists of the top manager and a The simple structure has as its key part the strategic apex, uses direct supervision, and employs vertical and horizontal centralization. First, centralization can facilitate coordination. Most healthcare institutions utilize a functional organizational structure (Understanding Healthcare Management, n.d.). Horizontal differentiation: The degree of task specialization across the hierarchy. Third, when local adaptation is important, decentralization is typically favored. Conflict turns many organizations negative. Those changes are for example complex multinational relationships, an increasing variety of information, capital and material flows as well as price pressure and increasing competition due to the elimination of national boundaries. Differentiation: Differentiation is the process by which an organization allocates people and resources to organizational tasks and establishes the tasks and authority relationships that allow the organization to achieve its goals. Note that managers can influence the visibility of subunit performance and the extent of decentralization through organization design, thereby limiting the impact of organization size and diversity on the size of a management hierarchy. What is the complexity? The process of delayering was a standard feature of Jack Welch’s tenure at General Electric, during which he laid off 150,000 people, reduced the number of layers in the hierarchy from nine to five, and simultaneously increased General Electric’s profits and revenues. Similarly, production activities may be centralized at key locations to eliminate duplication, attain economies of scale, and lower costs. Second, centralization can help ensure that decisions are consistent with organizational objectives. Organization structure can be thought of in terms of three dimensions: Vertical Differentiation in Organizational Structure. Similarly, Microsoft performs major development activities for its Windows operating system at its Redmond corporate campus, but the company has decentralized responsibility for marketing and sales to local managers in each country and region where it does business. This might be achieved by centralizing production scheduling at the firm’s head office. As at Nucor, achieving a flat hierarchy requires decentralization of responsibility for many decisions to lower-level managers who run autonomous self- contained units (in Nucor’s case, individual steel plants). If these units are managed on an arm’s-length basis, with topmanagement intervening in subunit operations only when performance goals are not met, the top managers can handle a wide span of control, which makes a flat organization feasible. The establlishment of integrating mechanisms, which are mechanisms for coordinating subunits. The idea behind employee empowerment is that if you give employees more responsibility for their jobs they will work harder, which increases productivity and reduces costs. This is why many high-technology firms operate with a greater degree of decentralization than firms operating in more stable and predictable environments. Discuss the roles of vertical and horizontal differentiation as they relate to organizational structure. To avoid being stretched too thin and losing control, they tend to add layers to the management hierarchy, hiring more managers and delegating some decision-making authority to them. In positive organizations leaders do the work necessary to integrate differentiated systems. Adding more levels in the hierarchy is a response to the problems of control that mount when a manager has too much work. A firm’s vertical differentiation determines where in its hierarchy the decision-making power is concentrated. Soon he was too busy to perform all the tasks he had been doing. Delayering: Reducing the Size of a Hierarchy Given the disadvantages associated with tall hierarchies, many firms attempt to limit the size of the management hierarchy. By doing so the manager may get access to more resources, earn performance bonuses, or avoid sanctions for poor performance. A vertical organization structure is one that relies on managers to command and control their employees' work. We return to this issue in Chapter 9 when we discuss control systems. This cost the agency crucial hours in the early part of the disaster, which significantly slowed its response and meant that the relief effort was less effective than it might have been. Similarly, Jeffery Immelt, the head of GE’s medical systems business under Welch, had 21 direct reports (Immelt replaced Welch as CEO). The process did not stop here. Other things being equal, the more layers there are in a hierarchy, the more opportunities there are for people to deliberately distort information. In the structure, each person is supervised by the one directly above him. Copyright OrgCharting 2004-2016; All Rights Reserved. For example, a company could have a group working in information technology, another in marketing and another in finance.Each department has a manager or director who answers to an executive a level up in the hierarchy who may … In other words, as an organization gets larger it tends to become taller. The vertical organizational structure is a strict hierarchical structure with power emanating from the top to the bottom. Horizontal Differentiation in Organizational Structure. General Introduction to Vertical Organizational Structure. Vertically structured organizations have clear lines of authority, with quicker decision making and better designation of tasks to employees. Centralization of important decisions minimizes the chance of this occurring. The Dow chemical company is located is the second quadrant titled Symmetric. https://www.upcounsel.com/functional-organizational-structure 3. D. human resources component. FEMA officials apparently felt that they had to discuss relief efforts with their superiors before proceeding. 2. Top 10 facts why you need a cover letter? A property or characteristic of the organizational structure. Thus by giving store managers the ability to set prices and make stocking decisions, Wal-Mart’s top managers can hold local store managers accountable for the performance of their stores, and this increases the ability of top managers to control the organization. In addition, as organizations grow they often start to undertake more activities— expanding their product lines, diversifying into adjacent activities, vertically integrating, or expanding into new regional or national markets. A business owner is typically at the top of a vertical chain of command. Thus at Wal-Mart, although purchasing decisions are centralized so the firm can realize economies of scale in purchasing, routine pricing and stocking decisions are decentralized to individual store managers, who set prices and choose the products to stock depending on local conditions. FEMA, the federal agency responsible for disaster response, was widely criticized for being very slow to help the hundreds of thousands of mostly poor people who had been made homeless. In a management context, if crucial information has to pass through many layers in a tall hierarchy before it reaches decision makers, it may get distorted in the process. Problems in Tall Hierarchies Several problems can occur in tall hierarchies that may result in lower organizational efficiency and effectiveness. By centralizing decision making, a firm can avoid the duplication of activities that occurs when similar activities are carried on by various subunits within the organization. The more responsibility subunit managers have for decisions that impact subunit performance, the fewer excuses they have for poor performance and the more accountable they are. Decentralization vests decision-making authority in lower-level managers or other employees. Nucor, forexample, has only four layers in its hierarchy, yet it is the largest steelmaker in the United States. Nucor, for example, has 25 divisions. Employees can clearly monitor their roles and duties. 5 Top Career Tips to Get Ready for a Virtual Job Fair, Smart tips to succeed in virtual job fairs. It then passes on those savings to consumers in the form of lower prices, which lets the company grow its market share and profits. Third, centralization can avoid duplication of activities by various subunits within the organization. A key element of his strategy was to transform General Electric into a leaner and faster-moving organization—which required delayering. When looking at the composite structure of the organization, it appears to have high vertical differentiation. In effect, the CEO added another layer to the management hierarchy to cope with growth. Do you have employment gaps in your resume? As we have seen, vertical differentiation is concerned with the location of decision-makingresponsibilities within an organization. Delayering is based on the assumption that when times are good, firms tend to expand their management hierarchies beyond the point of efficiency. Are important strategic and financial decisions pushed down to operating units, or are they concentrated in the hands of top managers? Decentralization gives top management time to focus on critical issues by delegating more routine issues to lower-level managers and reducing the amount of information top managers have to process, making them less vulnerable to cognitive biases. In contrast, sales decisions tend to be more decentralized because economies of scale are less of a consideration here. How many layers are added is also partly determined by the span of control managers can effectively handle. For several days while thousands of homeless people huddled in the New Orleans Superdome, lacking food and adequate sanitary facilities, FEMA was nowhere to be seen. A third problem with tall hierarchies is that they are expensive. They do it because they are committed to what is best for the organization (Quinn, Letters to Garrett: pg. 1. Vertical differentiation, which refers to the location of decision-making responsibilities within a structure (that is, centralization or decentralization) and also to the number of layers in a hierarchy (that is, whether the organizational structure is tall or flat). Centralization. B. formal organizational structure of the company. There are additional advantages and disadvantages to consider with vertical integration as well. (Thomas, 2014) Based on this information I created a matrix organizational structure that incorporates holacracy in several departments. The vertical organizational structure also has lots of disadvantages. Span of Control The term span of control refers to the number of direct reports a manager has. Businesses in this area rate high on both horizontal and vertical differentiation. Employees are motivated to work hard to achieve a higher level. The width and height of the hierarchy. 8 At Google, for example, lower-level employees are givenexplicit permission to develop new business ideas and the right to lobby top managers for the funds to develop those ideas. Thus tall hierarchies tend to be slower to change. The firm was soon successful and business grew, so the CEO hired more employees. This change has involved a shift in perspective from the commonly adopted vertical organizational structure to flat type of organizational structure. Typology and Configuration. One example of quality-based vertical differentiation is to have a line of computers that have all the same features, but different quality parts. To the extent that information is distorted, senior managers will make decisions on the basis of inaccurate information, which can result in poor performance. The thousands of State Farm Insurance Company agents' offices scattered throughout the United States are an example of: A)vertical differentiation B)spatial differentiation C)a tall structure with narrow spans of control D)departmentation by product Such decentralization of strategy making would not be found in firms operating in a more stable and predictable environment, such as the automobile industry. Microsoft felt that having six divisions in the company led to confused sales, marketing, and product development efforts and that greater centralization was required to harmonize efforts. Forms of differentiation: • Horizontal differentiation • Vertical differentiation 5. 13 Delayering has also been prompted by the realization that large firms can function withrelatively flat structures if their organization architecture is designed correctly. Before you determine whether your organizational structure should be vertical or horizontal, you need to understand the differences between the two frameworks. If disruptions within the supply chain occur, then the entire operation is put at-risk until the supply chain can be restored. 6 This can put the firm at a competitive disadvantage. First, decisions regarding overall firm strategy, major financial expenditures, financial objectives, and legal issues are centralized at the senior management level in most organizations. The same may also be true of purchasing decisions. At this point he hired help—a factory manager to supervise employees and plan production, a sales manager and three other salespeople to seek business, an accounts manager to manage the books, and a purchasing manager to buy lumber. Are production and marketing decisions centralized in the offices of upper-level managers, or are they decentralized to lower-level managers? The balance between vertical and horizontal differentiation represents one of the main challenges for organizational design, which defines mechanisms of control, decision-making and activity coordination that are essential for organizational goal achievement (Jones, 2009). First, top management can become overburdened when decision-making authority is centralized. C. control systems and incentives in place. There are arguments for both centralization and decentralization. Ltd. Wisdomjobs.com is one of the best job search sites in India. By the time the message has been transmitted by a number of people, it becomes distorted and the meaning starts to change (this can have amusing consequences, which of course is the point of the game). The objective here is to understand why organizations have the structure that they do. By "structure" I mean things like degree and type of horizontal differentiation, vertical differentiation, mechanisms of coordination and control, formalization, and centralization of power. This is the degree to which a decision making authority in the organization is centralized. It's your ultimate org chart tool which is advanced, easy and affordable. Horizontal differentiation is high. How wide is the subject of some debate, but it seems that good managers can effectively handle as many as 20 direct reports if the circumstances are right.In sum, as organizations grow and undertake more activities, the management hierarchy tends to become taller. It is often painful work. A second aspect of vertical differentiation refers to the number of levels in an organization’s hierarchy. Horizontal differentiation, which refers to the formal division of the organization into subunits. First, there is a tendency for information to get accidentally distorted as it passes through layers in a hierarchy. These activities may need to be coordinated to ensure a smooth flow of components to the assembly operation. Major strategic decisions, for example, are often centralized to make sure the entire organization is pulling in the same direction. Larger community hospital staff and services are laid out in tall vertical differentiations to display a clear cut chain of command for the range of services provided. In another example, Microsoft recently reduced the number of divisions in its organization from six to three, thereby centralizing decision making in fewer senior managers, in an attempt at greater coordination. What is the structure or Vertical differentiation in a company? With more businesses to manage the CEO found that he was once again stretched, so he created four divisions: the wood products factory, the home builder, the brick factory, and the equipment rental company. The CEO then managed the general managers and focused his attention on issues that cut across businesses, while the general managers manage people within their businesses. Vertical Organization Structure. Jack Welch believed that the key to successful delayering is to move fast (thereby eliminating lingering uncertainty among managers concerning their job security) and to reward and promote managers who thrive within the new structure, thereby indicating the management style that will be favored, Principles Of Management Interview Questions, All rights reserved © 2020 Wisdom IT Services India Pvt. Formalization is about rules and processes that prescribe people's behaviour. 15 signs your job interview is going horribly, Time to Expand NBFCs: Rise in Demand for Talent, Designing Structure: Vertical Differentiation - Principles of Management. Although the choice between centralization and decentralization depends on the circumstances being considered, a few important generalizations can be made. Differentiation is normal and it causes conflict. 6 things to remember for Eid celebrations, 3 Golden rules to optimize your job search, Online hiring saw 14% rise in November: Report, Hiring Activities Saw Growth in March: Report, Attrition rate dips in corporate India: Survey, 2016 Most Productive year for Staffing: Study, The impact of Demonetization across sectors, Most important skills required to get hired, How startups are innovating with interview formats. Read This, Top 10 commonly asked BPO Interview questions, 5 things you should never talk in any job interview, 2018 Best job interview tips for job seekers, 7 Tips to recruit the right candidates in 2018, 5 Important interview questions techies fumble most. This is about horizontal and vertical differentiation or creating units in different geographies. Often firms seeking to transform their organizations centralize power and authority in a key individual (or group) who then sets the new strategic direction for the firm and redraws organization architecture. See handouts page for more information on organizational structure. Just as centralization is one way of maintaining control in an organization, decentralization is another. Over time the CEO decided to enter other businesses that were related to the wood products industry, including home building, a brickmaking business, and a construction equipment rental company. The bureaucratic inefficiencies associated with a tall hierarchy become evident only when the competitive environment becomes tougher, at which time managersseek to delayer the organization. Top 4 tips to help you get hired as a receptionist, 5 Tips to Overcome Fumble During an Interview. Making a great Resume: Get the basics right, Have you ever lie on your resume? When decisions are decentralized to lower-level managers, those managers may make decisions at variance with top managers’ goals. With a chain of command well defined, decisions usually move from the top down through layer by layer, and people at … The disadvantage of vertical integration is that it reduces the amount of diversification that an organization can access. As they grow, however, managers find that there is a limit to the amount of information they can process and the control they can exert over daily operations. 5. Frequently it makes sense to centralize some decisions and decentralize others, depending on the type of decision and the firm’s strategy. Organization structure can be thought of in terms of three dimensions: 1. This is significant because we know that although adding layers to an organization can reduce the workload of higher-level managers and attenuate control loss, tall hierarchies have their own problems. Second, motivational research favors decentralization. What are avoidable questions in an Interview? Fourth, by concentrating power and authority in one individual or a management team, centralization can give top-level managers the means to bring about needed major organizational changes. Organizational structures may be inherently weak or chief executives may create personality-organization constellations that adversely affect employees. In a decentralized structure, decisions are made closer to the spot by individuals who (presumably) have better information than managers several levels up a hierarchy. Once the new strategy and architecture have been decided on, however, greater decentralization of decision making normally follows. How Can Freshers Keep Their Job Search Going? Vertical Differentiation Please use an example. Vertical differentiation, which refers to the location of decision-making responsibilities within a structure (that is, centralization or decentralization) and also to the number of layers in a hierarchy (that is, whether the organizational structure is tall or flat). The examples structure is based an oil and gas refinery, which is quite similar to chemical plant. Fourth, decentralization can result in better decisions. The hurricane flooded much of New Orleans and resulted in a mandatory evacuation of the city. In general, a multinational organization (MNO) is an enterprise that owns several production units in different countries. There are advantages and disadvantages to a vertical structure. This enables store managers to respond quickly to changes in their local environment, such as a drop in local demand or actions by a local competitor. To run each division he appointed a general manager.
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