Factors Affecting Organisational Structure-process of structuring-LIBRARAY MANAGEMENT
A manager has to design a structure that will best suit the specific requirements of his organisation. Designing an organisation structure is a continuous process. Any change in factors which impinge upon the design of an organisation will necessitate a change in the structure to suit the new conditions. Some of the factors which affect organisational structures are environment, technology and the psychological. characteristics of workers. An organisation is continuously interacting with its environment in terms of drawing inputs from it and providing it its outputs. All organisations operate within an environment which comprises economic, social, cultural, political and legal sub-systems. A change in any of these sub-systems may force change in the design of the structure. The more responsive your organisation is to changes in the environment, the more favourable will be its public image and the greater the chances of its survival and success. Most libraries and information centres operate in complex and changing external environments which produce new challenges. The second factor affecting the structure of an organisation is the technology that is adopted. With the introduction of automation and computerisation, new organisational structural designs are necessitated. Libraries have been adopting a host of technologies like computers, compact storage, telecommunications; recognition technology, reprographics, micrographics, etc., and their impact on the organisational structure is enormous.
Many have felt that hierarchical structures can no longer satisfactorily meet the challenges of technology in libraries. But no other structure is established as a norm even though network and matrix structures are occasionally or rarely discussed in the literature of librarianship. The changes necessitated are redefining jobs and redesigning existing departments to suit the new technological process. Above all, today the greatest impact of technology is on the manner in which people collect, receive and use information: Lastly, the changing psycho-social characteristics of the workers - like greater demand for leisure time and formal recognition of unions - which lead to the introduction of the five day week, etc. are equally important in deciding the organisational structure. The three factors that we have discussed so far are external to the organisation and its management. However, there are some attitudes and values of the management which have a critical bearing on the structure of an organisation. Most important, of these are the management's attitude towards the issues of decentralisation and delegation of authority and the role and function of line and staff personnel. Also affecting the organisational structure are the scalar principle and span of control (discussed below).