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Project Manager Training: Pros & Cons of a Strong Matrix Organizational Structure PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 25 February 2010 02:39

By: Daiv Russell


Before 1970, larger business organizations generally were systematically structured so that there were departments of employees in which a team of workers answered to a functional or line supervisor, and these divisions were called silos. A matrix organization is one in which an attempt has been made to successfully rearrange the structure in order to instead create various workable teams for project management.

Categories of the matrix organizations come in several spectra. The goal and focus of each is to provide a balance of power between manager's and their functional needs in particular. The three primary matrices layer in three categories: The Weak Matrix, Strong Matrix, and Balanced Matrix organizational structure. This mini-treatise, will address the overall benefits and drawbacks of the Strong Matrix organizational structure in the article.

Strong Matrix Organizational Structure

Because of the problems encountered in the silo structure, a strong matrix structure was put in place with the project managers being responsible for supervising the workers. Responsibility for the administration of human resources was left in the hands of the line managers. Under this arrangement the project manager can effectively manage the project without having to be concerned with human resource issues.

I have personally experienced this work environment and organizational structure finding it very satisfying. As Project Manager, I successfully led the project team with authority over project related tasks while not having to be concerned with functions that were not project related. I did not have to devote time and energy to performance reviews, employee contracts, training needs, vacations, etc. These functions were managed by a staff manage allowing me to focus on project priorities.

After staffing requirements are laid out by the project manager, the functional manager will provide resources and training. Gantt Charts are used and resource plans are developed to determine organization among the individuals working on the project. Sometimes, it is necessary for staff to move to another project. This will only happen after it is approved by the project manager.

While project managers cooperate with functional managers, the project manager is primarily responsible for every detail related to the project. Hence, in this matrix structure, the project manager has primary authority and responsibility.

About the Author


Daiv Russell is a marketing and management consultant with Envision Consulting in Tampa, Florida. Learn more about matrix management structure at Choose the right Project Management Software and optimize your Gantt Chart Use


(ArticlesBase SC #341490)

Article Source: - Project Manager Training: Pros & Cons of a Strong Matrix Organizational Structure

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 07 April 2010 01:28