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Background to the Study

Organizational structures developed from the ancient time of hunters and collectors in tribal organizations through highly royal and clerical power structures to industrial structures and today’s post-industrial structures. As pointed out by Lawrence B. Mohrthe (1997) early theorists of organizational structure, Taylor, Fayol, and Weber (1990) “saw the importance of structure for effectiveness and efficiency and assumed without the slightest question that whatever structure was needed, people could fashion accordingly. Organizational structure was considered a matter of choice… When in the 1930s, the rebellion began that came to be known as human relations theory, there was still not a denial of the idea of structure as an artifact, but rather an advocacy of the creation of a different sort of structure, one in which the needs, knowledge, and opinions of employees might be given greater recognition.” However, a different view arose in the 1960s, suggesting that the organizational structure is “an externally caused phenomenon, an outcome rather than an artifact.


The definition of an organization has changed during history along with deferent components involve in an organization which have developed. When business leaders and managers set objectives and goals of the organization, the next step would be to design an adequate structure together with the proper and suitable strategies together and make use of them to achieve objectives. Organizational structure is formal system of reporting relationships that controls and coordinates employees and keeps them motivated to go for organizational objectives (AndrjzA,Hucznski and David A, Buchanan, 2007)

An organizational structure is also the factor which determines the allocation of both resources and responsibility in an organization within its deferent departments and individuals. Organizational structure as a path to achieve the organizational vision which can be used as a standard policy, and lastly, to measure the performance of the organization supervisory or junior management in charge with the implementation of policies.

 Very early organizational structures were often based either on product or function (Oliveira & Takahashi, 2012). The matrix organization structure crossed these two ways of organizing (Galbraith, 2009; Kuprenas, 2003). Others moved beyond these early approaches and examined the relationship between organizational strategy and structure (Brickley, Smith, Zimmerman, & Willett, 2002).    This approach began with the landmark workof AlfredChandler (1962, 2003), who traced the historical development of such large    American corporations likeDuPont, Sears, and General Motors. He concluded from his study that an organization’s strategy tends to influence its structure.  Hesuggests  that  strategy  indirectly determines such variables as the organization’s tasks, technology,  and  environments,  and each  of  these  influences the  structure  of  the organization

The term organizational structure refers to the formal configuration between individuals and groups regarding the allocation of tasks, responsibilities, and authority within the organization (Galbraith,1987;Greenberg,2011).

Organization structures are considered to be the anatomy of the organization that provides a foundation within which organizations function. The structure of organizations affects or models the behaviour of its employees who become products of organizational structures in either a positive or negative manner. Thus, structural deficiencies may affect employee’s behaviour and performance negatively which adversely impacts organizational performance.

Problem Statement

The problem with the Cameroon Development Cooperation (CDC) is the organizational structure they use and work with. How limited the resources are and even how employees are ranked and how they should work in teams and in what type of relationship they can work with other employees.

When profitability or performance of a business is low, most managers first look at issues like methods of production, manpower, equipment, production cost, and so on. Very few of them perceive the cause of this poor performance to be as a result of the organizational structure. The decision-making process of firms, the span of control, the delegation of tasks, reporting relationships, supervision and follow up, the ease of communication between employees, and even the alignment of offices all depend on the type of organizational structure that the firm decides to choose.

In most developing countries, the study of how employees react towards these structures and how they perform under these structures can show how important it really is for organizations to implement the correct structure for the specific environment the organization is working in. When looking at factors such as the organizational structure itself, employees’ performance and the factors influencing the organizational structures, decentralization and centralization, one can identify if there is any relationship between the structure chosen and the worker’s performance (Clark, 2011).The organizational structure affects worker’s performance through sales volume (turnover), output (quality product) and profitability (how profitable).

The organizational structure of a business is the framework that facilitates communications and efficient work processes. When business problems emerge, signs often exist within the design or components of the organizational structure.  In some cases, these signs can be early indicators of significant problems that need to be addressed. Such business problems that often arise as a result of poor organizational structure the company is using include low productivity, unequal workload (that is unequal distribution of work to workers), unclear lines of communication, lack of teamwork, slow decision-making, and lack of innovation (International Journals of Scientific Research and Publications, Volume 3, Issue 10, October 2013). These problems can have significant repercussions on the success of the business concern.

Research Questions

1.3.1 General research question

What is the the effect of organizational structure on organizational performance in Cameroon?

1.3.2 Specific research questions

  1. What is the relationship between a clearly stated hierarchy and organizational performance?
  2. What is the impact of job design on organization performance
  3. What’s the relationship between Job design and organizational performance

1.4 Objectives of the Study

1.4.1 Main research objective

The main objective of this study will be to assess the the effect of organizational structure on organizational performance in Cameroon.

1.4.2 Specific objectives

And the specific objectives are;

  1. To identify the impact of clearly defined hierarchy on employees’ performance.
  2. To investigate the impact of job design on organization performance.
  3. To examine the relationship between Job design and organizational performance

1.5 Hypothesis of the Study

The hypothesis of this study is stated below:

H01: Organizational structure has a significant impact on employee performance.

H01: Organizational structure has no significant impact on employee performance.

H02: Clearly defined hierarchy has a great impact on employees’ performance.

H02: Clearly defined hierarchy does not have a great impact on employees’ performance.

H03: Job design has a significant relationship with organizational performance

H03: Job design has no significant relationship with organizational performance


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