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Span of management also called span of control/supervision indicates the

number of people directed or managed effectively by a single executive or

supervisor. Stated differently, it refers to the number of subordinates
reporting directly to a single manager who is accountable for their activities.
Thus, if a general manager has 5 managers reporting to him directly in a
firm employing 10,000 employees, the span of management of the general
manager is 5 not 10,000.
Following variables must be considered in establishing the span of
3. Similarity of functions.
4. Geographical closeness of subordinates.
5. Complexity of functions.
6. Direction and control required by subordinates.
7. Coordination required.
8. Organizational assistance received by supervisor.
Span of control
Span of control (sometimes called span of management) refers to the number of
workers who report to one manager. For hundreds of years, theorists have searched for
an ideal span of control. When no perfect number of subordinates for a manager to
supervise became apparent, they turned their attention to the more general issue of
whether the span should be wide or narrow.
A wide span of management exists when a manager has a large number of subordinates.
Generally, the span of control may be wide when:
The manager and the subordinates are very competent.
The organization has a well-established set of standard operating procedures.
Few new problems are anticipated.
A narrow span of management exists when the manager has only a few subordinates.

The span should be narrow when:

Workers are located far from one another physically.
The manager has a lot of work to do in addition to supervising workers.
A great deal of interaction is required between supervisor and workers.
New problems arise frequently.
Keep in mind that the span of management may change from one department to another
within the same organization.
Following are the factors affecting which determine the span of
ii. Ability of the executive .
iii. Time available for supervision
iv. Nature of work
v. Capacity of subordinates
vi. Effectiveness of communication
vii. Control devices
viii.Organizational assistance available to the manager
ix. Degree of supervisory coordination needed
x. Geographic proximity
xi. Similarity of functions
Departmentation means “group of activities and employees into departments.” It is,
as Allen wrote a means of dividing the large and monolithic functional organization
into smaller , flexible administrative units.
Departmentation, therefore, refers to the organizational device of classifying the
activities or operations of an undertaking into functionalised categories.
Departmentation, limits the number of persons to be managed by inducting them
into different departments. Thus, ensuring suitable span of control.

Process of Departmentation
Departmentation is done through the following processes:
f) Identification of tasks or duties.
g) Analysis of details of each task.
h) Description of the functions.
i) Entrusting the group of functions to separate specialist heads and providing them
suitable staff.
j) Delineation of scope of authority and responsibility of departmental heads.
Departments can be made on the basis of:
• Functions, e.g., sales, production, personnel, planning, transport, etc.
• Products, e.g., air-conditioners, accounting machines, electronic
calculators, etc.
• Territory, region, or geographical area, e.g., Northern railway, Western
railway etc.
• Customer, e.g., wholesaler, retailer, government.
• Process.
• Appropriate combination of any of these types.
• Taking advantage of specialisation: Division of labour should permit
persons to become specialists in specific types of work.
• Facilitating control: Departmentation should be thought of in terms of
effectively regulating and evaluating the operation of the varied activities of the
• Aid to coordination: Departmentation should not create insoluble problems of
• Balancing the costs: Pattern of departmentation should not imply top heavy
expenditure on capital equipment, establishment, incidental expenses, etc.
• Preparation for departmentation : There should be sufficient preparation
before deparmentation is decided upon.
Function wise Departmentation
In most companies, unless they are giant corporations, this is the form of the
organization. The departmental heads will report to the Chief Executive. A typical
department, will have the following structure:
Managing Director
Production Manager
• Production Planning Manager
•Production Engineering Manager
•Industrial Engineering Manager
•Maintenance Manager
•Works Superintendent

Product wise Departmentation
Product wise departmentation is resorted to where specialisation is required in
respect of specific products of the company. For example , a company may deal with
eight or nine product lines, e.g., chemicals, drugs, foodstuffs, cosmetics, etc. and
each under a separate division, e.g., Chemicals Division, Foodstuffs Division, etc.

Territorial or Geographical Departmentation

Such departmentation is especially attractive to large-scale enterprise or others
having activities physically or geographically spread out. Such departmentation is
proper when its purpose is to encourage local participation indecision-making and to
take advantage of certain economies of localised operation.

Departmentation by Customers
Departmentation by Customers places greater emphasis on the customers and
distinguishes one type from the other. For example, the division could be industrial
buyers, whole-sellers, government, and pubic undertakings, agriculturists, etc.