Matrix organization structure

The Matrix Organization Structure can deliver this, provided people have the skills to make the matrix work. This is a type of organizational structure which facilitates a horizontal flow of skills and informations.

Matrix organization structure

In contrast to most other organizational structures, which arrange managers and employees by function or product, matrix management combines functional and product departments in a dual authority system. In its simplest form, a matrix configuration may be known as a cross-functional work team, which brings together individuals who report to different parts of the company in order to complete a particular project or task.

Even when a company does not label its structure a matrix system or represent it as such on an organization chart, there may be an implicit matrix structure any time employees are grouped into work teams this does not normally include committees, task forces, and the like that are headed by someone other than their primary supervisor.

The earliest models emphasized efficiency of process through managerial control. Described as "mechanistic," those systems were characterized by extensive rules and procedures, centralized authority, and an acute division of labor.

They sought to create organizations that mimicked machines, and usually departmentalized workers by function, such as finance and production. Important theories during that era included German sociologist Max Weber's ideal bureaucracy, which was based on absolute authority, logic, and order.

During the s and s, new ideas about the structure and nature of organizations began to surface. Inspired by the work of thinkers and behaviorists such as Harvard researcher Elton Mayo, who conducted the famed Hawthorne Experiments, theories about management structure began to incorporate a more humanistic view.

Those theoretical organizational structures were classified as "organic," and recognized the importance of human behavior and cultural influences in organizations. While the mechanistic school of thought stressed efficiency and production through control, organic models emphasized flexibility and adaptability through employee empowerment.

From a structural standpoint, mechanistic organizations tended to be vertical or hierarchical with decisions flowing down through several channels. Organic models, on the other hand, were comparatively flat, or horizontal, and had few managerial levels or centralized controls.

Matrix Management and Structure - duties, benefits

Many proponents of organic organizational theory believed it was the solution to the drawbacks of mechanistic organizations. Indeed, mechanistic organizations often stifled human creativity and motivation and were generally insensitive to external influences, such as shifting markets or consumer needs.

In contrast, companies that used organic management structures tended to be more responsive and creative.

However, many organizations that adopted the organic approach also discovered that, among other drawbacks, it sometimes lacked efficiency and personal accountability and failed to make the most productive use of some workers' expertise.

As an alternative to basic organic structures, many companies during the mids embraced a model that minimized the faults and maximized the benefits of different organic management structures, as discussed below.

Possibly the first application of what would later be referred to as the "matrix" structure was employed in by General Chemicals in its engineering department. In the early s a more formalized matrix method called "unit management" was implemented by a large number of U.

Not untilhowever, was matrix management formally recognized. NASA developed a matrix management system for its space program because it needed to simultaneously emphasize several different functions and projects, none of which could be stressed at the expense of another.

It found that traditional management structures were too bureaucratic, hierarchical, slow-moving, and inflexible. Likewise, basic organic structures were too departmentalized i. NASA's matrix solution overcame those problems by synthesizing projects, such as designing a rocket booster, with organizational functions, such as staffing and finance.

Despite doubts about its effectiveness in many applications, matrix management gained broad acceptance in the corporate world during the s, eventually achieving fad status. Its popularity continued during the s as a result of economic changes in the United States, which included slowing domestic market growth and increasing foreign competition.

Those changes forced many companies to seek the benefits offered by the matrix model.

The Advantages of Matrix Organizational Structure |

Most organizational structures departmentalize the work force and other resources by one of two methods: Functional organizations are segmented by key functions. For example, activities related to production, marketing, and finance might be grouped into three respective divisions.

Within each division, moreover, activities would be departmentalized into subdepartments. The marketing division, for example, might encompass sales, advertising, and promotion departments.

The chief advantage of functionally structured organizations is that they usually achieve a fairly efficient specialization of labor and are relatively easy for employees to comprehend.

In addition, functional structures reduce duplication of work because responsibilities are clearly defined on a company-wide basis. However, functional division often causes departments to become short-sighted and provincial, leading to incompatible work styles and poor communication.

Companies that employ a product or divisional structure, by contrast, break the organization down into semiautonomous units and profit centers based on activities, or "projects," such as products, customers, or geography.

Regardless of the project used to segment the company, each unit operates as a separate business. For example, a company might be broken down into southern, western, and eastern divisions.

Or, it might create separate divisions for consumer, industrial, and institutional products. Again, within each product unit are subdivisions.

Matrix organization structure

One benefit of product or project departmentalization is that it facilitates expansion because the company can easily add a new division to focus on a new profit opportunity without having to significantly alter existing systems.

In addition, accountability is increased because divisional performance can be measured more easily. Furthermore, divisional structures permit decentralized decision making, which allows managers with specific expertise to make key decisions in their area.Matrix management is commonly used in organizations to share resources, a.k.a.

employees, across functions. In a matrix management system, an individual has a primary report-to boss while also working for one or more managers, typically on projects. Problems of Matrix Organizations.

Stanley M. Davis; Paul R. Lawrence; consider that no well-run organization would adopt a matrix structure without the longer run expectation that, at a given.

Use 'matrix organization' in a Sentence

The matrix organization structure is a combination of two or more types of organizational structures, such as the projectized organization structure and the functional organization two types of organizational structures represent the two extreme points of a string, while the matrix organization structure is a balance of these two.

An organizational structure that facilitates the horizontal flow of skills and is used mainly in the management of large projects or product development processes, drawing employees from different functional disciplines for assignment to a team without removing them from their respective positions..

Employees in a matrix organization report on day-to-day performance to the. Jun 30,  · In a matrix organizational structure, functional managers are not pulled from their comfort zones and areas of expertise to manage projects that require a specific skill set.

Organizational structure is one of the keys to maximizing efficiency and productivity at your workplace, and it can have tangential benefits such as boosting employee motivation. The matrix.

The Advantages of Matrix Organizational Structure |