TYPES OF AUTHORITY : LINE & STAFF ROLES Thursday, Dec 18 2008 

Authority is the right to perform or command. It allows its holder to act in certain designated ways and to directly influence the actions of others through orders.

It also allows its holder to allocate the organization’s resources to achieve organizational objectives.

AUTHORITY ON THE JOB :

Barnard  defines authority as the character of communication by which an order is accepted by an individual as governing the actions that individual takes within the system.

Barnard maintains that authority will be accepted only under the following conditions:

  1. The individual can understand the order being communicated.
  2. The individual believes the order is consistent with the purpose of the organization.
  3. The individual sees the order as compatible with his or her personal interests.
  4. The individual is mentally and physically able to comply with the order.

The fewer of these 4 conditions that are present, the lower the probability that authority will be accepted and obedience be exacted.

Barnad offers some guidance on what managers can do to raise the odds that their commands will be accepted and obeyed. He maintains that more and more of a manager’s commands will be accepted over the long term if:

  1. The manager uses formal channels of communication and these are familiar to all organization members.                                                                            
  2. Each organization member has an assigned formal communication channel through which orders are received.                                                              
  3. The line of communication between manager and subordinate is as direct as possible.                                                                                                                 
  4. The complete chain of command is used to issue orders.                                     
  5. The manager possesses adequate communication skills.                                     
  6. The manager uses formal communication lines only for organizational business.                                                                                                                                
  7. A command is authenticated as coming from a manager.

TYPES OF AUTHORITY:

3 main types of authority can exist within an organization:

  1. Line Authority
  2. Staff Authority
  3. Functional Authority

Each type exists only to enable individuals to carry out the different types of responsibilities with which they have been charged.

LINE AUTHORITY:

The most fundamental authority within an organization, reflects existing superior-subordinate relationships. It consists of the right to make decisions and to give order concerning the production,sales or finance related behaviour of subordinates.

In general, line authority pertains to matters directly involving management system production, sales, finance etc., and as a result with the attainment of objectives.

People directly responsible for these areas within the organization are delegated line authority to assist them in performing their obligatory activities.

 

STAFF AUTHORITY:

Staff authority consists of the right to advise or assist those who possess line authority as well as other staff personnel.

Staff authority enables those responsible for improving the effectiveness of line personnel to perform their required tasks.

 

Line and Staff personnel must work together closely to maintain the efficiency and effectiveness of the organization. To ensure that line and staff personnel do work together productively, management must make sure both groups understand the organizational mission, have specific objectives, and realize that they are partners in helping the organization reach its objectives.

Size is perhaps the most significant factor in determining whether or not an organization will have staff personnel. The larger the organization, the greater the need and  ability to employ staff personnel.

As an organization expands, it usually needs employees with expertise in diversified areas. Although small organizations may also require this kind of diverse expertise, they often find it more practical to hire part time consultants to provide it is as needed rather than to hire full time staff personnel, who may not always be kept busy.

 

LINE – STAFF RELATIONSHIPS :

e.g. A plant manager has line authority over each immediate subordinate, human resource manager, the production manager and the sales manager.

However, the human resource manager has staff authority in relation to the plant manger, meaning the human resource manager has staff authority in relation to the plant manager, meaning the human resource manager possesses the right to advise the plant manager on human resource matters.

Still final decisions concerning human resource matters are in the hands of the plant manager, the person holding the line authority.

ROLE OF STAFF PERSONNEL:

Harold Stieglitz has pinpointed 3 roles that staff personnel typically perform to assist line personnel:

  1.  The Advisory or Counseling Role :   In this role, staff personnel use their professional expertise to solve organizational problems. The staff personnel are, in effect, internal consultants whose relationship with line personnel is similar to that of a professional and a client.                  
  2. The Service Role : Staff personnel in this role provide services that can more efficiently and effectively be provided by a single centralized staff group than by many individuals scattered throughout the organization. This role can probably best be understood if staff personnel are viewed as suppliers and line personnel as customers.                
  3. The Control Role : Staff personnel help establish a mechanism for evaluating  the effectiveness of organizational plans.

The role of staff in any organization  should be specifically designed to best meet the needs of that organization.

CONFLICT IN LINE – STAFF RELATIONSHIP:

From the view point of line personnel, conflict is created  because staff personnel tend to 

  • Assume Line Authority
  • Do not give Sound Advice
  • Steal Credit for Success
  • Fail to Keep  line personnel  informed of their activities
  • Do not see the whole picture.

From the view point of Staff Personnel, conflict is created because line personnel do not make proper use of staff personnel, resist new ideas and refuse to give staff personnel enough authority to do their jobs.

Staff Personnel can often avert line-staff conflicts if they strive to emphasize the objectives of the organization as a whole, encourage and educate line personnel in the appropriate use of staff personnel, obtain any necessary skills they do not already possess, and deal intelligently with the resistance to change rather than view it as an immovable barrier.

Line personnel can do their part to minimize line staff conflict by sing staff personnel wherever possible, making proper use of the staff abilities, and keeping staff personnel appropriately informed.

 

*****

FUNCTIONAL AUTHORITY:

Functional authority consists of the right to give orders within a segment of the organization in which this right is normally non existent.

This authority is usually assigned to individuals to complement the line or staff authority they already possess.

Functional Authority generally covers only specific task areas and is operational only for designated amounts of time. It is given to individuals who, in order to meet responsibilities in their own areas, must be able to exercise some control over organization members in other areas.

 

 

 

 


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MANAGEMENT RESPONSIBILITY GUIDE Thursday, Dec 18 2008 

7 Responsibility Relationships among Managers, as used in the Management Responsibility Guide:

  1. General Responsibility: The individual who guides and directs the execution of the function through the person accepting operating responsibility.                                                                                                                            
  2. Operating Responsibility: The individual who is directly responsible for the execution of the Function.                                                           
  3. Specific Responsibility: The individual who is responsible for executing a specific or limited portion of the function.                                          
  4. Must be Consulted: The individual whose area is affected by a decision who must be called on to render advice or relate information before any decision is made or approval is granted. This individual does not, however, make the decision or grant approval.                                  
  5. May Be Consulted: The individual who may be called on to related information, render advice, or make recommendations before the action is taken.                                                                                                                       
  6. Must be Notified: The individual who must be notified of any action that has been taken.                                                                                                               
  7. Must Approve: The individual,other than persons holding general and operating responsibility who must approve or disapprove the decision.

RESPONSIBLE MANAGERS:

Managers can be described as responsible if they perform the activities they are obligated to perform. 

Since managers have more impact on an organization than non managers, responsible managers are a pre requisite for managemetn system success.

 

The degree of responsibility that a manager possesses can be determined by appraising the manager on the following 4 dimensions:

  1. Attitude toward and conduct with subordinates.
  2. Behaviour with Upper Management
  3. Behaviour with Other Groups
  4. Personal Attitudes and Values

4 Key Dimensions of Responsible Management Behaviour 

Attitude toward and conduct with subordinates.

  • Responsible Managers take complete charge of their work groups.
  • They Pass Praise and credit along to subordinates.
  • They stay close to problems and activities.
  • They take actions to maintain productivity and are willing to terminate poor performers if necessary.

Behaviour with Upper Management:

  • Responsible Managers accept criticism for mistakes and buffer their groups from excessive criticism.                                                                                  
  • Responsible managers ensure that their groups meet management expectations and objectives.

Behaviour with Other Groups :

  • Responsible Managers make sure that any gaps between their areas and those of other managers are securely filled.

Personal Attitudes & Values:

  • Responsible managers identify with the group.
  • Put organizational goals ahead of personal desires or activities.
  • Perform tasks for which there is no immediate reward but that help subordinates, the company or both.
  • Conserve corporate resources as if the resources were their own.

RESPONSIBILITY Thursday, Dec 18 2008 

Responsibility is the obligation to perform assigned activities. It is the self assumed commitment to handle a job to the best of one’s ability.

The source of responsibility lies within the individual.

A person who accepts a job agrees to carry out a series of duties or activities or to see that someone else carries them out.

The act of accepting the job means that the person is obligated to a superior (relationship management) to see that job activities are successfully completed.

THE JOB DESCRIPTION:

An individual’s job activities within an organization are usually summarized in a formal statement called a job description – a list of specific activities that must be performed by whoever holds the position.

Unclear job descriptions Can confuse employees and may cause them to lose interest in their jobs. On the other hand, a clear job description can help employees to become successful by focusing their efforts on  the issues that are important for their position.

When properly designed, job descriptions communicate job content to employees, establish performance levels that employees must maintain, and act as a guide that employees should follow to help the organization reach its objectives.

Job activities are delegated by management to enhance the accomplishment of  management system objectives.

Management analyzes its objectives and assigns specific duties that will lead to reaching those objectives. A sound organizing strategy delineates specific job activities for every individual in the organization.

The following 3 areas are related to responsibility:

  1. Dividing Job Activities
  2. Clarifying Job activities of managers
  3. Being Responsible

DIVIDING JOB ACTIVITIES:

One person cannot be responsible for performing all of the activities that take place within an organization. Since so many people work in a given management system, organizing necessarily involves dividing job activities among a no. of individuals.

Some method of distributing these job activities is essential.

THE FUNCTIONAL SIMILARITY METHOD:

The functional similarity method is the most basic method of dividing job activities.

Management should take 4 basic interrelated steps to divide job activities in the following sequence:

  1. Examine management system objectives.
  2. Designate Appropriate activities that must be performed to reach those objectives.
  3. Design specific jobs by grouping similar activities.
  4. Make specific individuals responsible for performing those jobs.

 

FUNCTIONAL SIMILARITY & RESPONSIBILITY:

3 additional guides can be used to supplement the functional similarity method.

  1. Overlapping Responsibility should be avoided when making job activity divisions.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Overlapping responsibility refer to a situation in which more than one individual is responsible for the same activity.                                                                                                                                                                                           Generally speaking, only one person should be responsible for completing one activity.                                                                                    When 2 or more employees are unclear about who should do a job because of overlapping responsibility, it usually leads to conflict and poor working relationships. Often the Job does not get done because each employee assumes the other will do it.                                                                       
  2. RESPONSIBILITY GAP:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                A responsibility gap exists when certain tasks are not included in the responsibility area of an individual organization member. This results in a situation in which nobody within the organization is obligated to perform certain necessary activities.                                                                                                                                       
  3. Management should avoid creating job activities for accomplishing tasks that do not enhance goal  attainment. Organization members should be obligated to perform only those activities that lead to goal attainment.

Chain of Command Thursday, Dec 18 2008 

Departmentalization, Division of Labour, Span of Control and the 4th aspect of organizing effort is SCALAR RELATIONSHIPS – The Chain of Command.

Every organization is built on the premise that the individual at the top possesses the most authority and that other individual’s authority is scaled downward according to their relative position on the organization chart.
The lower a person’s position on the organization chart, then, the less authority that person possesses.
The Scale Relationship or Chain of Command is related to the unity of command.
UNITY OF COMMAND is the management principle that recommends that an individual  have only 1 boss.
If too many bosses give orders, the result will probably be confusion, contradiction and frustration –  a sure recipe for ineffectiveness and inefficiency in an organization.
Although the unity of command principle is 75 years old, it is still considered as a valid and critical one.
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Fayol recommends that a gangplank be created for a peer level communication within and across departments with structures to keep the organization updated on the information shared. 

SPAN OF MANAGEMENT Wednesday, Dec 17 2008 

After Departmentalization and Division of Labour, the third main consideration of any organizing effort is Span of Management – the no. of individuals a manger supervises.

The more individuals a manger supervises, the greater the span of management.

Span of management is also called the span of control, span of authority, span of supervision and span of responsibility.

The central concern of span of management is to determine how many individuals a manager can supervise effectively.

To use the company’s human resources most productively, managers should supervise as many individuals as they can best guide towards meeting the organization’s targets. Too few – wasting their capacity. Too many – losing effectiveness.

DESIGNING SPAN OF MANAGEMENT : A CONTINGENCY VIEWPOINT

As reported by Harold Koontz, several important situational factors influence the appropriateness of the size of an individual’s span of management:

  • SIMILARITY OF FUNCTIONS:                                                                                                                                                                                                                   The degree to which activities performed by supervised individuals are similar or dissimilar. As the similarity of the subordinates activity increases, the span of management increases and vice versa.                                                                          
  • GEOGRAPHIC CONTINUITY:                                                                                                                                                                                                                           The degree to which subordinates are  physically separated. In general, the closer subordinates are physically, the more of them managers can supervise effectively.                                                                              
  • COMPLEXITY OF FUNCTIONS:                                                                                                                                                                                                                       The degree to which worker’s activities are difficult and involved. The more difficult and involved the activities are, the more difficult it is to manage a large no. of individuals effectively.                                                                      
  • COORDINATION :                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The amount of time managers must spend synchronizing the activities of their subordinates with the activities of other workers. The greater the amount of time must be spent on such coordination, the smaller the span of management can be.                                                                                                                       
  • PLANNING:

              The amount of time  managers must spend developing management                   system objectives and plans and integrating them with the activities                   of their subordinates. The more time managers must spend on the                       planning activities, the fewer individuals they can manage effectively.

 

GRAICUNAS and SPAN OF MANAGEMENT:

V.A.Graicunas developed a formula for determining the no. of possible relationships between a manager and subordinates when the no. of subordinates is known.

Graicunas’s Formula is as follows:

C = n a (2^n)/2 + n – 1 b

C is the total no. of possible relationships between manager and subordinates, and n is the known no. of subordinates.

As the no. of subordinates increases, arithmetically, the no. of possible relationships between the manager and those subordinates increases geometrically.

DIVISION OF LABOUR & Guidelines on Coordination Tuesday, Dec 16 2008 

After Departmentalization, the second main consideration of any organizing effort is how to divide labour.

Division of Labour is the assignment of various portions of a particular task among a no. of organization members. Rather than one individual doing the entire job, several individuals perform different parts of it.

Production is divided into a no. of steps, with the responsibility for completing various steps assigned to specific individuals.

The essence of division of labour is the individuals specialize in doing part of a task rather than the entire task.

 

Advantages & Disadvantages of Division of Labour:

Several explanations are available for the usefulness of division of labour.

  • When workers specialize in a particular task, their skill at performing that task tends to increase.                                                                                            
  • Workers who have 1 job and 1 place in which to do it, do not lose valuable time changing tools or locations.                                                                 
  • When workers concentrate on performing only one job, they naturally try to make their job easier and more efficient.                                                        
  • Division of labour creates a situation in which workers need only to know how to perform their part of the work task rather than the entire process for producing the end product.

Dis Advantages of Excessive Division Of Labour:

Division of labour focuses solely on  efficiency and economic benefit and overlooks the human variable in organizations.

Work that is extremely specialized tends to be boring and therefore will eventually cause production rates to go down as workers become resentful of being treated like machines.

Managers need to find a reasonable balance between specialization and human motivation.

COORDINATION:

In a division of labour situation, the importance of effective coordination of the different individuals doing portions  of the task is obvious.

Coordination is the orderly arrangement of group effort to provide unity of action in the pursuit of a common purpose. Coordination is the means for achieving any and all organizational objectives.

Coordination involves encouraging the completion of individual portions of a task in a synchronized order that is appropriate for the overall task.

Groups need coordination for maintaining productivity.

Establishing and maintaining coordination may required close supervision of employees. Managers can establish and maintain coordination through bargaining, formulating a common purpose for the group, or improving on specific problem solutions so the group will know what to do when it encounters those problems.

 

Mary Parker Follett’s Guidelines on Coordination:

  1. Coordination can be attained with least difficulty through direct horizontal relationships and personal communications. When a coordination problem arises, peer discussion may be the best way to resolve it.                                                                                                                                     
  2. Coordination be a discussion topic throughout the planning process. Managers should plan for coordination.                                                                        
  3. Maintaining coordination is a continuing process and should be treated as such. Managers cannot assume that because their management system shows coordination today, it will show coordination tomorrow.                                                                                                       
  4. Human element is important and the communication process is an essential consideration in any attempt to encourage coordination.               
  5. Employee skill levels and motivation levels are also primary considerations for the coordination activity.

ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE Tuesday, Dec 16 2008 

STRUCTURE:

In any organizing effort, managers must choose an appropriate structure.

Structure refers to the designated relationships among resources of the management system. Its purpose is to facilitate the use of each resource, individually and collectively, as the management system attempts to attain its objectives.

ORGANIZATIONAL CHART:

An organizational chart is constructed in pyramid form, with individuals toward the top of the pyramid having more authority and responsibility than those toward the bottom.

The relative positioning of individuals within boxes on the chart indicates broad working relationships, and lines between boxes designate formal lines of communication between individuals.

AUTHORITY & RESPONSIBILITY:

The dotted line is not part of the organization chart but has been added to emphasize the chart’s pyramid shape. The locations of the positions also indicate broad working relationships.

FORMAL & INFORMAL STRUCTURE:

Formal structure is defined as the relationships among organizational resources as outlined by Management. It is represented primarily by the Organization Chart.

Informal Structure is defined as the patterns of relationships that develop because of informal activities of organization members. It evolves naturally and tend to be molded by individual norms and values and social relationships.

DEPARTMENTALIZATION & FORMAL STRUCTURE:

Department is a unique group of resources established by management to perform some organizational task. The process of establishing departments within the management system is called DEPARTMENTALIZATION.

FUNCTIONAL DEPARTMENTALIZATION:

The most widely used basis for establishing departments within the formal structure is the type of work functions (activities) being performed within the management system.

Functions are typically divided into major categories like  marketing, production and finance, etc.,

 

PRODUCT DEPARTMENTALIZATION:

Organization structure based primarily on product departmentalizes resources according to the products being manufactured. As the company grows and as their product range grows, it becomes increasing difficult for management to coordinate activities across the organization.

Organizing on the lines of products and product groups permits the logical grouping of resources across the organization.

GEOGRAPHICAL DEPARTMENTALIZATION:

Structure based primarily on territory departmentalizes according to the places where the work is being done or the geographic markets on which the management system is focusing.

The physical distances can range from quite short (between 2 points in the same city) to quite long ( between 2 points in the same state or different states or countries or continents).

As market areas expand and the work locations increase, the physical distances between places can make the management task extremely cumbersome. To minimize this problem, resources can be departmentalized according to the territory.

 

CUSTOMER DEPARTMENTALIZATION:

Structure based primarily on the customer establishes departments in response to the organization’s major customers.

This structure,of course, assumes that major customers can be identified and divided into logical categories.

 

MANUFACTURING PROCESS DEPARTMENTALIZATION:

Structure based primarily on manufacturing process departmentalizes according tot he major phases of the process used to manufacture products.

 

*** FORCES INFLUENCING FORMAL STRUCTURE***

According to Shetty & Carlisle, the formal structure of a management system is continually evolving.

4 Primary forces influences this evolution:

  1. Manager
  2. Task
  3. Environment
  4. Subordinates

The evolution of a particular organization is actually the result of a complex and dynamic interaction among these forces.

MANAGER:

Each manager perceives the organizational problem in a unique way. Naturally, knowledge, experience, background and values influence the manager’s perception of what the organization’s formal structure should be or how it should be changed.

TASK:

Task includes the degree of technology involved in performing the task and the task’s complexity. As task activities change, a force is created to change the existing organization.

ENVIRONMENT:

Environment include the customers and suppliers of the management system, along with existing political and social structures.

SUBORDINATES:

Sub ordinates include the needs and skill  levels of subordinates.

Changes in the environment or subordinate dynamics can effect a change in the organization.

ORGANIZING – 16 General guidelines by Henri Fayol Tuesday, Dec 16 2008 

Organizing is the process of establishing orderly uses for all resources within the management system.

Here, Orderly signifies the emphasis on the attainment of management system objectives and assist managers not only in making objectives apparent but in clarifying which resources will be used to attain them.

IMPORTANCE OF ORGANIZING:

The organizing function is extremely important to the management system because it is the primary mechanism mangers use to activate plans.

Organizing creates and maintains relationships between all organizational resources by indicating which resources are to be used for specified activities and when,where, and how they are to be used.

A thorough  organizing efforts helps managers to minimize costly weaknesses, such as duplication of effort and idle organizational resources.

If there were to be an organizing department, it’s responsibilities will include:

  • Reorganization plans that make the management system more effective and efficient.
  • Plans to improve managerial skills to fit current management system Needs.
  • An advantageous Organizational climate within the Management System.

 

Henri Fayol developed 16 general guidelines for organizing resources:

  1. Judiciously prepare and execute the operating plan.                        
  2. Organize the human and material facets so that they are consistent with objectives, resources and requirements of the concern.                                                                                                                 
  3. Establish a single component, energetic guiding authority i.e. a Formal Management Structure.                                                                    
  4. Co-ordinate all activities and efforts.                                                                     
  5. Formulate clear, distinct and precise decisions.                                          
  6. Arrange for efficient selection so that each department is headed by a component, energetic manager and all employees are placed where they can render the greatest service.                                   
  7. Define duties.                                                                                                               
  8. Encourage initiative and responsibility.                                                         
  9. Offer fair and suitable rewards for services rendered.                              
  10. Make use of sanctions against faults and errors.                                       
  11. Maintain discipline.                                                                                           
  12. Ensure that individual interests are consistent with the general interests of the organization.                                                                            
  13. Recognize the Unity of Command.                                                              
  14.  Promote both material and human coordination.                                                                                                                  
  15.  Insitute and Effect Controls.                                                                          
  16.  Avoid regulations, red tape and (excessive) paper work.                                                   

 

5 Step Organizing Process:

  1. Reflect on Plans and Objectives.
  2. Establish major Tasks.
  3. Divide major tasks into subtasks
  4. Allocate resources and directives for subtasks.
  5. Evaluate the results of implemented organizing strategy.

METHODS OF SALES FORECASTING Thursday, Dec 11 2008 

Modern Managers have several different methods available for Sales Forecasting.

Popular methods are:

  1. Jury of Executive Opinion Method
  2. The Salesforce Estimation Method
  3. Time Series Analysis Method

Jury of Executive Opinion Method:

In the Jury of executive opinion method of Sales Forecasting, appropriate managers within the organization assemble to discuss their opinions on what will happen to sales in the future.

Since these discussion sessions usually resolve around hunches or experienced guesses, the resulting forecast is a blend of informed opinions.

A similar, forecasting method, which has been developed recently is called the DELPHI Method. Delphi Method also gathers, evaluates, and summarizes expert opinions as the basis for a forecast, but the procedure is more formal than that for the jury of executive opinion method.

The Delphi Method has the following steps:

  1. STEP 1 – Various Experts are asked to answer, independently and in writing, a  series of questions about the future of sales or whatever other area is being forecasted.                                                      
  2. STEP 2 – A summary of all the answers is then prepared. No expert knows, how any other expert answered the questions.       
  3. STEP 3 – Copies of summary are given to the individual experts with the request that they modify their original answers if they think it necessary.                                                                                                    
  4. STEP 4 – Another summary is made of these modifications, and copies again are distributed to the experts. This time,however, expert opinions that deviate significantly from the norm must be justified in writing.                                                                                        
  5. STEP 5 – A third summary is made of the opinions and justifications, and copies are once again distributed to the experts. Justification in writing for all answers is now required.   
  6. STEP 6 – The forecast is generated from all of the opinions and justifications that arise from step 5.

 

SALES FORCE ESTIMATION METHOD:

The Sales Force Method is a sales forecasting technique that predicts future sales by analyzing the opinions of sales people as a group.

Salespeople continually interact with customers, and from this interaction they usually develop a knack for predicting future sales.

As with the jury of executive opinion method, the resulting forecast normally is a blend of the informed views of the group.

The sales force estimation method is considered very valuable management tool and is commonly used in business and industry throughout the world.

This method can be further improved by providing sales people with sufficient time to forecast and offering incentives for accurate forecasts.

Companies can make their sales people better forecasters, by training them to better interpret  their interactions with the customers.

 

TIME SERIES ANALYSIS METHOD:

The time series analysis method predicts the future sales by analyzing the historical relationship between sales and time.

Although the actual number of years included in a time series analysis will vary from company to company, as a general rule, managers should include as many years as possible to ensure that important sales trends do not get undetected.

 

Other complex sales forecasting methods include:

  • Statistical Correlation Method
  • Computer Simulation Method

 

Do you need support in Sales Forecasting for your organization? Do you need some support in beating the Sales Forecasts?

 

MANAGEMENT INNOVATIONS

managementinnovations2020@gmail.com; manojonkar@gmail.com;

919375970812

PLANNING TOOLS Thursday, Dec 11 2008 

The planning tools are techniques managers can use to help develop plans.

2 of the most important tools are:

  1. Forecasting
  2. Scheduling

FORECASTING:

Forecasting is the process of predicting future environmental happenings that will influence the operation of the organization.

Although sophisticated forecasting techniques have been developed only rather recently, the concept of forecasting can be traced at least as far back as Fayol.

The importance of forecasting lies in its ability to help managers understand the future makeup of the organizational environment, which, in turn, helps them formulate more effective plans.

HOW FORECASTING WORKS:

e.g: William C. House in describing the Insect Control Services Company, has developed an excellent illustration of how forecasting works.

In general, Insect Control Services forecasts by attempting to do the following:

  1. Establish relationships between Industry Sales and National Economic and Social Indicators.                                                                      
  2. Determine the impact government restrictions on the use of chemical pesticides Will have on the growth of Chemical, biological and electromagnetic energy pest control markets.       
  3. Evaluate Sales Growth Potential, profitability, resources required, and risks involved in each of its market areas (Commercial, industrial, institutional, governmental and residential)                                                                                                            
  4.  Evaluate the potential for expansion of marketing efforts in geographical areas of the country and abroad.                                          
  5. Determine the likelihood of technological breakthroughs that would make existing product lines obsolete.

TYPES OF FORECASTS:

Various types of forecasts includes:

Economical, Technological, Social  Trends, Sales Forecasting etc.,

Although a company’s complete forecasting process should, and usually does, include all these types of forecasting, sales forecasting is considered the key forecast for a company.

A Sales forecast is a prediction of how high or low sales of the organization’s products and/or services will be over the period of time in reference.

It is the Key forecast for organizations because it serves as the fundamental guideline for planning.

Only after the sales forecast has been completed can managers decide, for example, if more salespeople should be hired, if more money for plant expansion must be borrowed, or if layoffs and cutbacks in certain areas are necessary.

Managers must continually monitor forecasting methods to improve them and to reformulate plans based on inaccurate forecasts.

SCHEDULING:

Scheduling is the process of formulating a detailed listing of activities that must be accomplished to attain an objective, allocating the resources necessary to attain the objective, and setting up and following timetables for completing the objective.

Scheduling is an integral part of every organizational plan.

Two popular scheduling techniques are Gantt Charts and PERT – Program Evaluation and Review Technique.

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