What are the 4 Types of Coordination in Organizations? – Explained!

iii. Internal Coordination

iv. External Coordination

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i. Vertical Coordination:

Vertical coordination is the coordination between different levels of the organization to ensure that all levels of organization are in harmony with the organizational policies and programmes. This is achieved through delegation of authority by directing and by controlling.

ii. Horizontal Coordination:

Horizontal coordination is the coordination between departments on the same level of managerial hierarchy. Coordination between production and marketing departments at the same level or organizational hierarchy is an example of horizontal coordination. This is achieved by forming cross-functional teams and self-managed teams.

iii. Internal Coordination:

Vertical and horizontal types of coordination, if carried out within an organization, are called internal coordination. Internal coordination is achieved through following techniques:

Coordination through Effective Supervision:

Supervision ensures harmonious and reciprocal performance of subordinates. It also synchronizes and coordinates subordinates’ efforts both among themselves and in relation to other groups. Such collaborative efforts of individuals and groups to achieve organizational objectives are possible through coordination, which again is best achieved through supervision.

Coordination through Organizational Process:

Suitable organizational process achieves coordination. Proper grouping of activities, assignment of job to the subordinates, proper authority delegation, etc., are parts of the organizational process, which helps in achieving coordination.

Coordination through Personal Contact:

Another important technique of achieving coordination is through personal contact. Personal contact reciprocally relates one function with another and this is achieved through the development of interpersonal and horizontal relationships of people working in the organization. This promotes cooperation and collaboration due to mutual understanding; hence, coordination through personal contact is significant for realizing the objectives of an organization.

Coordination through Effective Communication:

Transparency through communication achieves coordination. Keeping people in the organization informed time to time about the internal and external changes is essential to make them understand the changed situation arid coordinate their efforts to achieve intended goals. Communication can be made through letters, documented procedures, reports, bulletins and also through personal behaviour of managers.

Communication does the important task of dovetailing information for the benefit of the organization. People react to the communication quickly, provided it is properly coordinated. This is why effective communication is considered to be an important technique of coordination.

Coordination by Group Meetings:

Henry Fayol pointed out that lack of coordination is more visible when each department knows nothing about others or fails to relate them to the organization as a whole. This is primarily for the existence of water tight compartments for the traditional hierarchical structure, where people lack initiative and loyalty.

To eliminate such a situation, coordination is essential which can be best achieved by periodic group meetings and conferences of departmental heads. Group meetings help people to understand the organizational needs better.

It helps them to exchange ideas, know about plans and activities of their department and so also the organization as a whole. Proper coordination, therefore, is best achieved through group meetings, and this is why group meetings are considered to be an important technique of coordination.

Coordination through Liaison Officers:

Particularly for large organizations, direct personal contact of managers of various units and functions may not be very frequent. Such gap is often filled by the organizations through liaison officers. Therefore, also by appointing liaison officers, an organization seeks to achieve coordination.

iv. External Coordination:

Success or failure of an organization also depends on number of external forces. No organization can operate in isolation, it has to continuously interact with dynamic environmental forces and devise its strategies to respond to such forces to survive.

External coordination facilitates such process by integrating the organization with the dynamic external forces. For effective external coordination, an organization at the outset has to know what the pertinent external forces are.

After such identification, the organization has to analyse their potential impact and take suitable remedial to preventive measures to cope with the same. Important external forces may be the changing expectations of stakeholders (like suppliers, customers, investors, employees or even the society) or changing competitive situation, technological advancement, changing government policies and regulations, etc.

To facilitate external coordination, a number of techniques are adopted by an organization. New management concepts like, customer relationship management (CRM), which aligns organization with the customers, supply chain management (SCM), which increases market share and multiply customer satisfaction, etc., have now been developed for more effective external coordination.

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