Project Management Structure
A Project Management Structure could be seen as the chain of command and control within an organization telling how reporting relationships are utilized in a given organization.
Essential to the success of any project team is the construction management structure. Structuring an organization or any project team invariably supports the work being executed. Construction management teams that are not aligned impact the outcome of the project negatively because the organizational structure influences the construction management, hence telling on how the project is run. Non-structured projects often lack guidance leading to less success. To have a perfectly executed plan, there must be an organized management structure to oversee the whole operation. This structure consists of the personnel and methods put in place to accomplish set goals.
The current classification of project management organization structures are as follows:
1. FUNCTIONAL STRUCTURE
In a functional organizational structure, decision making on budgets and schedules are made solely by the technical manager who has significant expertise in the same field. This means the general contractor has little or no authority. Some organizations do not even have the post of a project manager. What is found though is that the work is divided into various departments available such as the human resource, sales, administration, engineering, and technical department, etc. and directives are sent to the contractor project management via the heads of the departments.
Characteristics of this type of structure are that the workers are equipped with skills solely for their respective departments hence leading to greater efficiency since everyone knows who is going to be accountable for any issue gone wrong as responsibility is predetermined. Contrary to this though, such work may become tediously repetitious over time resulting in reduced enthusiasm and loyalty to the contractor Project Management.
2. PROJECT-BASED STRUCTURE
The Project-based Organizational Structure is the direct opposite of the functional organizational structure although their work functions still group staff. In this case, an independent best general contractor team is formed, and the team’s Management is distinctively separated from other units. There is a provision for separate staff and resources, and the best general contractor is granted free implementation of the project, authority, and jurisdiction over the building company project’s budget, schedule, and the project team. The manager stays at the top of the hierarchical structure giving directives. Upon the completion of the project, the project team is disbanded, and resources are directed to other areas of importance.
i. Project team decision is developed within the project since the reaction time is short.
ii. Individuals involved have clear responsibilities and they work with strong power and high cohesion.
iii. Multiple leadership is avoided since only the building company’s construction manager is reported to.
i. There is a loss of scalable economies whenever the management has several projects to execute.
ii. There is no continuity for the project member once the construction project is completed.
3. MATRIX STRUCTURE
Matrix Organizational Structure can be said to be a hybrid of both the functional and project-based structures. The matrix organizational structure can be found in-between the practical and project-based types depending on the type of matrix structure in use. Strong matrix structure, for instance, can be likened to the project-based structure as the responsibility for the project is carried by the best general contractor, but if a Weak matrix structure is employed the authority is returned to the functional manager (hence a useful composition). Also, in a balanced matrix structure, equal power and freedom are shared between both the technical and project manager.
The matrix Structure is the go-to method in an ever-changing environment as it promotes greater efficiency, helps the organization respond to client demands or changes faster. This is easily achieved as both Project, and functional managers complement each other because while the project manager horizontally exhibits project authority, the technical manager vertically does the same moving downwards. As an example, the general contractor could be taking care of the contractor project schedule or budget while the functional manager outlines and distributes responsibilities and oversees the performance of equipment.
i. Redundancy is reduced as resources can be shared in multiple projects.
ii. The work at hand is focussed upon as the project manager gives it more attention.
i. There is a probability for the occurrence of tensions between the project manager and the functional manager.
ii. The occurrence of competition for scarce resources and conflicts between both structures.
iii. There is sometimes dilly-dallying in the project as a result of conflicting orders from the two bosses (project manager and functional manager).
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