Directions: Read Chapter 2 entitled, “Organizing and the Human Element.” Prepare your answers for a 5 point quiz that will contain some of the following questions:
1) What are the advantages of having an organizational chart?
2) Discuss the factors under which an organization should be considered for decentralization?
3) What are 4 important factors that should be considered in determining the number of people to be supervised by an individual?
4) List and explain the difference methods (structures) of organization?
5) What are the categories of functions of a typical engineering department?
6) What are at least 5 functions of a typical engineering department?
7) Explain the four ways in which an engineering manager can be displaced from his position.
Organizing and the Human Element
An organizational chart outlines levels of authority, helps in assigning responsibilities to organizational staff, facilitates the identification of strong or weak control areas, serves as a basis of issuing out directives, and helps improve channels of communication in the organization. It also simplifies functions of the management while simultaneously serving as reference documents and a framework for scheduling and budgeting.
Several factors can lead to decentralization. For instance, it can happen when the organization engages in project-oriented or labor-intensive operations, when operations can be separated or the operations engage in diversified operations, and in situations where there is need for entrepreneurial initiative, commitment and drive as well as prompt response time.
Amongst the important factors than need to be considered when determining the number of juniors to be assigned to an individual include the coordination degree required, availability of organizational help, the nature of work carried out and similarities of roles, and the supervisor’s level of involvement.
Organizational structures can be based on products. In this case, the types of products offered being by the organization matter. In terms of function, choice of structure depends on various organization functions such as accounts and administration. In terms of project dimension, structure entails the grouping of staff and activities depending on their interrelatedness. On the basis of territory, organizational structures are grouped based on geographic location or regions. Lastly, matrix organizational structures combine both the elements of project and functional approaches.
The categories of a typical engineering department include the product development category, the administrative category, liaison, services and drafting and lastly, research and analysis.
The functions of a typical engineering department include progress reporting, sourcing for new engineering ideas, provision of analytical services, carrying out tests and evaluations, constructing models, and liaising with external stakeholders such as clients.
A manager can be displaced from the managerial position due to underperformance. This can happen through several ways, for example, center displacement whereby the member maintains his office and title while junior staff members are transferred to another department. Another example is east displacement, whereby the manager is moved to another lateral position but with the same salary. North displacement is a situation whereby the manager is promoted to a senior position, while south displacement occurs when the manager is demoted to a lower position. Lastly, west displacement is manifested through a request for the manager to exit the company.