Jones (2012) defines organizational technology as “the combination of skills, knowledge, abilities, techniques, materials, machines, computers, tools, and other equipment that people use to convert or change raw materials, problems, and new ideas into valuable goods and services” (p. 240). In describing how technology impacts organizational design, the textbook and other required readings discuss the theories of Joan Woodward, Charles Perrow, and James D. Thompson, each of whom offers a way of explaining how technology influences optimal structure of organizations.
In a paper of at least 6 – 8 pages (excluding title and references pages), describe how technology (as defined by Jones, 2010) can increase organizational efficiency. Compare and contrast the technology models and theories of Woodward, Perrow, and Thompson. Explain the concepts of technical complexity, task variability and analyzability, and task interdependence. Apply these concepts to the operations of:
a. a large life insurance company
b. a drive-through coffee house
c. a videogame production company
d. a solar technology company
Identify the type of organizational structure you would expect to find in each of these four types of organizations, and explain why. Reference three sources in addition to required course readings.
Jones, G. R. (2012). Organizational theory, design, and change (7th ed.). Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: ISBN-10: 0132729946, ISBN-13: 978-0132729949
Klein, L. (2006). Applied social science: Is it just common sense? Human Relations, 59(8), 1155-1172. (ProQuest Document ID: 1143895141)
Technology Typology – Charles Perrow’s Model: http://www.provenmodels.com/41/technology-typology/charles-b.-perrow
This page on the ProvenModels website provides an overview of Charles Perrow’s model of technology in organizations, and complements material in the textbook.
Technology Typology – James D. Thompson’s Model: http://www.provenmodels.com/40/technology-typology/thompson
This page on the ProvenModels website provides an overview of James D. Thompson’s model of technology in organizations, and complements material in the textbook.
Technology Typology – Joan Woodward’s Model: http://www.provenmodels.com/39/technology-typology/woodward
This page on the ProvenModels website provides an overview of Joan Woodward’s model of technology in organizations, and complements material in the textbook.