Project Management Organizational Structures Paper

1200 words - 5 pages

A series of related jobs that are focused toward a major solution is a project. Projects take time, money, people, and other resources to perform successfully. Project management usually controls these resources as well as planning the project and allocating resources where needed. Before a project is started, management decides which organizational structure will be used to run the project. There are three organizational structures that can be chosen from consisting of the Functional, Matrix, and Pure Project structures. Each of these has their advantages and disadvantages in structuring a project. Project managers are in charge of initiating, planning, executing, controlling and closing the project. Prior to beginning a project the manager needs to decide which organizational structure is the best fit to run the project at hand. Choosing which organizational structure to use largely depends on the size of the company, what is trying to be accomplished, and what resources are available. This paper will examine the three primary organizational structures mentioned above and the situation in which each structure would be the best method to manage a project team.In the functional project management organizational structure, "the project is assigned to the functional unit that has the most interest in ensuring its success or can be most helpful in implementing it" (Mantel & Meredith, 2006). This organizational structure has been considerably one of the oldest methods used however, remains one of the most successful. The functional method is best used when applied to routine work functions and to support the value of work standards. Under this organizational structure projects are usually assigned into two different ways consisting of assigning a project to a functional manager who coordinates with others to contribute or assigning the project to different departments who each complete their portion of the work and report to the department managers. Consequently, "organizational behavior is important because the functional employees at the interface position find themselves reporting to more than one boss, a line manager [assigned to control resources] and a project manager for each project they are assigned to" (Kerzner, 2006).The functional structure has both advantages and disadvantages. Advantages include a higher flexibility in using the staff through other required contributions, employees may be switched back and forth between related projects, individuals may be grouped for a larger depth of knowledge, the functional division serves as a "base of continuity" in the event an individual chooses to withdraw from the project, and the functional field serves as a huge advancement to those who have remained with a the project through a successful completion (Mantel & Meredith, 2006). On the contrary, this structure is not very effective when used on more complex projects and when viewing employee recognition. The individual accountability...

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