Chapter 8 - Technology & Organizational Design

Chapter 8 - Technology & Organizational Design - Technology...

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Unformatted text preview: Technology & rganizational Design Organizational Design 1. Introduction 2. Three technology typologies Technology & social systems 3. Technology & social systems 4. Some current organizational technologies Introduction 1. Introduction a) Technology – Knowledge, techniques, tools b) Importance – Productivity – Job situation – Attitudes & behaviour – Impact on organization design aivety & hype about technology – Naivety & hype about technology • Assume technology will solve organizational problems (e.g., ERP systems) • Technology is oversold 2. Three technology typologies Joan Wood ard a) Joan Woodward – Unit of analysis: core technology of the rganization organization – Complexity of manufacturing technology • Woodward’s measure of Complexity: • Production volume + extent of process integration – 3 levels of complexity • Unit & small batch production • Mass production ontinuous process • Continuous process – Relation to organization design echnological complexity has curvilinear relation • Technological complexity has curvilinear relation with structure – Unit Æ Organic structure – Mass Æ Mechanistic structure – Process Æ Organic structure • Relation to Ashby’s Law – Unit Æ High variety of different products – Mass Æ Low variety – Process Æ High internal variety due to tech. complexity ) Charles Perrow b) Charles Perrow – Task Variety & Analyzability • Unit of analysis: work unit tasks ask Variety (# of exceptions) Task Variety (# of exceptions) Task Analyzability Low High Craft -e.g., skilled trades Nonroutine -e.g., research, new Low Mostly Organic structure product devlpmt. Organic structure High Routine-e.g., assembly line Mechanistic ructure Engineering-e.g., bridge design Mostly Mechanistic ructure – Perrow’s later work: “Normal Accidents” • Managing complex technological systems N l l t h ttl structure structure • E.g., Nuclear plants, space shuttles c) J.D. Thompsonc) J....
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This note was uploaded on 04/18/2008 for the course MANAGEMENT MSCI 311 taught by Professor Dumiering during the Spring '08 term at Waterloo.

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Chapter 8 - Technology & Organizational Design - Technology...

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