The idea of the matrix organization structure is to enable faster response and adaptation to a complex world.
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. This is mainly applied in large projects or product development processes, and hiring employees from different disciplines.
The Matrix Organization structure is where the individuals are grouped simultaneously by different operational perspectives. It is inherently complex and flexible, making it more suited for large companies operating in different regions and industries.
It is more dynamic than functional Management that it allows project team members to share informations more readily across task boundaries, and it also allows increase in knowledge.
The matrix organizational structure brings the employees and managers together to work on a specific goal which makes it atypical. This structure is a combination of the functional and projectized structures. The former divides departments within a company by the functions performed, while the latter divides them by products, customers or geographical location.
The Benefits of Matrix Organization Structure
- Efficient Information Exchange:
The departments in this type of structure can work closely together and communicate with each other more frequently to get issues resolved. There are effective lines of communications that exist in the organization for quick decision making.
People from the different departments can collaborate to implement and execute strategies. This specialized information exchange allows managers to respond quickly to the needs of the customers and the organization business goals.
- It Increases Motivation:
The matrix organization structure encourages democratic leadership style which incorporates the input of project team members before managers make decisions. This contributes valuable information that leads to employee satisfaction and increased motivation.
Every decision made by the manager is based on the employees’ point of view.
- It Has Internal Complexity:
Due to the complexity of the matrix organization structure, some employees may be confused as to who their supervisor is. This structure has dual authority and this may cause division among the employees and managers.
Miscommunication may result to dissatisfaction and ineffective management.
- It Is Expensive To Maintain and There May Be Internal Conflict:
Matrix organization is expensive mainly because of dual management.
It may also lead to unhealthy competition between the managers when it comes to choosing of employees. There could also be scarcity of resources that may lead people competing to get it. It is how people work together that determines the success or failure of the organization.
Using matrix organization structure would also
- improve the ability to access all the resources;
- enhance coordination across the organization;
- give faster decentralized decisions;
- improve access to diverse range of skills and perspectives of the employees and the managers;
- provide more multi-skilled workers; and lastly
- increase communication and coordination across the business.
Most of these are about improving the way people work together and breaking down traditional barriers to cooperation.
A Matrix organization structure introduces, or at least recognizes, the real life complexity of actual business environment. This includes geography, or the location of the project execution, refers to the responsibilities and account abilities of the project team members; the used technology that makes the business unit more effective and efficient.
However, a matrix organization structure also introduces a higher level of internal complexity and some additional people management challenges, so there must be significant advantages to a matrix organization structure that outweigh the matrix people management challenges.