MHR chapter 4.docx

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19 Mar 2012
Chapter 4
Organizing work for strategic success
- Organizations are composed of one or more employes who perform a variety of duties
- Organizational structures refer to the formal relationship among jobs in an organization
- Organizational chart is similar to the balance sheet where it shows the current structure of the
organization at a specified moment in time, the chart discloses the title of the manager’s role
and the type of departments established. The lines that connect to each other disclose who is
accountable to who and shows the chain of command in the organization. The cons of the
organizational chart is that it does not disclose information regarding actual communication
patterns, degree of supervision, amount of power and authority or specific duties and
- When designing an organization, we must choose a structure that complements the goals of the
- The relationships between people and tasks must be set up in a way where the organizations
will be able to achieve its goals efficiently and effectively through the use of an inspired
- Strategic advantage can occur when carefully deciding which employee should be responsible
for which duty
- Flatter organizations are characterized by managers who have a lot of authority over employees
as there are fewer levels of management, because of this they cannot monitor all of them at
once therefore these employees must be responsible while in the work environment
- In a bureaucratic structured organization, it takes on a top-down management approach, it
consists of many levels, and hierarchical communication channels and career paths, there are
highly specialized job with specific job descriptions and there is a focus on independent
- In a flat organization, it takes on a decentralized management approach, there are few levels
and multi directional communication, generally defined jobs associated with a general
description of the responsibilities and there is a focus on teams and product development
- In a matrix organization, there are two aspects to each job which are functional and product.
Finance personnel for product b are responsible to both the finance executive and the product b
Job design
- Job design is the process of organizing work into tasks that are job specific
- The strategy and the type of organization influences how jobs are designed
- Effective job design takes into account human and technological factors
- Job is a collection of interrelated activities and duties
- Job is entitled to an individual or may include a number of people in the office
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- The responsibilities and tasks of the job need to be clear to avoid confusion with other jobs and
should involve natural units of work that are similar and related as this reduces problems that
will occur and increase productivity
- Position is a job that has multiple tasks to perform and is accountable for a lot of things
- It is common for managers to divide work into smaller portions so that they may be converted
into jobs so they can be completed by employees
Job specialization
- Experts began to notice a positive relationship between job specialization and productivity and
- Work simplification was derived from the idea of scientific management where they increased
efficiency by simplifying the work that had to be done into highly specialized, iterated tasks that
will maximize productivity.
- Work simplification is an approach that is most effective in a consistent workplace and will be
most effective with employees who are diagnosed with intellectual disabilities or those who lack
training or education
- Work simplification is not effective in uncertain environments where change constantly occurs
where unstructured problems are run into often, or if employees demand a challenge in their
job as they are unsatisfied with the easy tasks, if left ignored they may leave the company or
demand a higher income to compensate for their disssatisaction
- The scientific management introduced the study of work
- Industrial engineering is a field of study that involves examining the way work is accomplished
and sets a time limit to improve efficiency
- Industrial engineers are those who examine, identify and determine the time it takes to
accomplish a job, from there they decide which, if any elements can be improved, combined,
rearranged or wiped out to reduce time needed to finish the job
- Emphasis on industrial engineering may cause employees to feel neglected or inferior
- In order for job design to effective, it must satisfy the individual’s psychological and
physiological needs
Behavioral aspects of job design
- Job enlargement/horizontal loading is when workers are given tasks that require the same level
of responsibility as their original tasks to increase the number of tasks they must perform. This
reduces the repetitiveness of the job and fatigue by expanding the job cycle and demanding the
worker to use more of their skills
- Job rotation is when employees are shifted from one occupation to another where they will be
performing another task. Workers feel motivated, are more efficient an experience more task
variety, the company benefits from having employees capable of performing each other’s job
- Job enrichment is seen as the best approach to motivate workers by introducing purposeful
tasks to make an employee feel satisfied or rewarded from their job. Job enrichment involves
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granting employees more independence and responsibility by allowing them to take on a more
significant role in the decision making process
- Pg 88 ways to enrich jobs
- Job enrichment is not universally applicable as some prefer less challenging tasks and fail if the
employees do not possess the required skills/abilities/knowledge to meet the demands of the
Team based job designs
- Logical extension of job enrichment and the job characteristics model has been the increasing
use of team based job designs which focuses on assigning a team rather than an individual
meaningful work to do
- Team members are given the authority to decide how they will approach the tasks
- Team based designs are more effective in flat organizaations and matrix organizations
- Organizations are starting to use virtual teams which is where team members are able to work
together efficiently and effectively regardless of their location and the boundaries of time and
using software to make meetings more productive
Ergonomic aspects of job design
- For a job to be effectively designed, companies must take into consideration the physiological
needs and health and safety issues when designing a job
- Ergonomics looks for ways to integrate and accommodate the physical needs of workers into
the design of job. The goal of ergonomics is to adapt the job system to accommodate human
characteristics which consequently reduces the amount of errors that occurs in products, the
damage to equipment, number of accidents due to poor job design
- When designing jobs, we must take into consideration ergonomics in the sense of how we can
accommodate the needs of employees in the job
- People who are satisfied with the physical work environment are more satisfied with their job
Increasing job flexibility
- Companies are struggling with challenges such as rapid product and technology change, global
competition, deregulation, political instability, demographic changes and a shift to a service
economy which increased the need for the company to be more responsive, flexible and
- Changes made work more cognitively complex, team based and collaborative, more dependent
on social skills, more dependent on their abilities in terms of use of technology and more time
pressued, more mobile and less dependent on geography. Because of this companies focus on a
person’s skills in job analysis, hiring and compensation management instead of a specific set of
duties and tasks
Nature of job analysis
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