Organizational structure

The organizational structure refers to that division within a company or educational, governmental and other organization, to establish limits and competencies between employees or members.

In other words, and as its name implies, it is about setting a structure within which it is organized, be it a hierarchy between jobs or a number of departments with specific tasks.

An organizational or organizational structure is represented graphically through an organization chart . It is a scheme in which you can see how the company has been segmented according to the levels of hierarchy or dependency between a department / position and others.

Characteristics of the organizational structure

Among many of the characteristics of the organizational structure are fundamentally the following:

  • It helps to optimize the general activities of the company by creating departments or improving those that already were, since it may be necessary to have a department for each type of task and thus achieve more productivity.
  • It has the flexibility of being centralized or decentralized , everything will depend on whether there is a board of directors that makes decisions (centralization) or whether each department has the autonomy to decide what, how and when to carry out its own activities.
  • The structure is based on collaboration and coordination between its units.
  • Not only does it aim to organize work groups, but its bases are focused on achieving objectives set at specific times, according to its own resources.
  • It may have an informal nature in the work dynamics, but its establishment is formal and must be respected.


There are four types of organizational structures:

Linear structure

It is one in which there is a boss and subordinates, so it is common in small companies. It is centralized, so that, in addition to dictating the rules and tasks, the boss receives reports from the employees. Normally the activities of companies with this organization are of rapid execution, since the decisions do not have to wait for the approval of a group of people.

Functional structure

Its division depends on the specialization of the employees. A graduate in advertising will be assigned to the advertising and marketing department, for example, and thus all people will be integrated into the groups where they can stand out the most. It is common in medium and large companies.

Staff structure

It is the structure that includes advisors and consultants in its organization. Decisions and relationships between departments or employees will be influenced by the opinion of these professionals who are outside the company’s payroll.

Matrix structure

This matrix structure refers to the creation of work groups that develop projects. For example, it is common for engineering project companies to handle this type of organization. There is a general project leader or supervisor, but possibly each work area also includes another supervisor who answers to the first.

Examples of organizational structure

The following are examples of organizational structure of companies or even departments within a company:

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