Posted on 27th February 2018

Organisational Structures - What They Are and Why They Are Important

Organisational Structures - What They Are and Why They Are Important

Organisational structure is a common term used in the business industry that essentially refers to your business size and style. It is crucial that you are aware of your organisational structure and cater your recruitment strategy around it in order to attract high calibre candidates.

So, what are the main organisational structures? you may ask.

1. Hierarchical Organisations

The Hierarchical Organisational Structure is the most traditional, especially in larger organisations, as it is made up of rankings which are commonly referred to as the ‘chain of command’.

Employees tend to be ranked within this structure, with the chief director at the top and workers at the bottom. Roles within the companies are clearly defined and it is easy to identify where they rank within the structure.

Positives Negatives
The structure of authority is clear. Communication tends to stick within departments rather than company-wide.
Leadership structure creates motivation for employees to get a promotion. Businesses may find it harder to introduce procedures or change.

2. Flat Organisations

Flat organisations are very different to hierarchical and are more suited to companies that have no ‘chain of command’. Therefore, a flat organisational structure is better suited towards smaller companies where everyone seems to communicate with one another, company-wide.

Positives Negatives
Communication is more wide-spread amongst all departments in the company. There may be confusion of who to turn to with an issue or request.
Decisions can be made a lot easier with less people involved and employees are more likely to gain responsibilities within their roles. Promotions and growth are not as achievable in comparison to hierarchical.

3. Flatarchies

Flatarchies is a very interesting organisation structure as it is a combination of both flat and hierarchical. Companies with this kind of structure are either: more hierarchical with ad-hoc teams for flat structures; or they have flat structure and form ad-hoc teams that are more structured in nature.

With that being said, companies with this type of structure seem to be more dynamic in nature and are thought to be a bit more flexible without constant structure.

Positives Negatives
Flexibility is more apparent due to being a combination of the two most common structures. Structure is not always constant and may have negative effects on employees and the business.
Employees are able to learn new skills from their peers and share their own knowledge. Flatarchies is seen as more temporary structure and is not said to be long-lasting.

4. Holacratic Organisations

The final organisational structure to consider is Holacratic. This is governance structure which can be characterised as a distribution of power among self-organising businesses, rather than top-down authority in the traditional, hierarchical structure.

Holacratic organisations provide a flat management structure which distributes authority, with the main goal being to ensure that those responsible for completing work are given the chance to determine how they are going to carry out the tasks at hand.

Positives Negatives
It is a modern and innovative structure. Employees can take on multiple roles in one job with this structure so confusion may occur or employees may feel overwhelmed.
Employees are going to gain new skills and knowledge when it comes to self-organisation. As a result of utilising many different characteristics, confusion may occur when carrying out a simple task.

Which one are you?

Have any struck a chord with you? Or would you have already referred to yourself as one of the four? Whatever the case may be, it is important that your recruitment strategies are of high-quality and suit your business’ needs.

If you are still unsure or would like to find out any more information, please feel free to call us on 0121 222 5599 for an informal discussion or send us an email to

Wright Solutions have over twenty years experience in the HR sector and work personally to provide high-calibre candidates for specialist executive roles in human resources and learning and development, for all organisational structures.

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