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Wide Span Of Control (B.S)

Asked by missymckay | Mar 7, 2006 | AS Level > Business Studies > Revision
can someone please tell me all the advantages and disadvantages of a wide span of control with some evaluation if you can please, flat organisational structure)
SZPoints: 3 | Difficulty: Average | Comments: 1 | Answered (goto answer)

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markerus, 7 Mar, 2006 @ 18:32
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A wide span of control forces managers to develop clear goals and policies, delegate tasks effectively, and select and train employees carefully. Since employees get less supervision, they tend to take on more responsibility and have higher morale with a wide span of control. On the other hand, managers with a wide span of control might become overloaded with work, have trouble making decisions, and lose control over their subordinates.

Wide spans of control result in flat organizations. A wide span of control is most appropriate when:

  1. The work is routine.
  2. Subordinates are highly trained.
  3. The supervisor is highly capable.
  4. The jobs are similar and performance measures are comparable.
  5. Subordinates prefer autonomy to close supervisory control.

The advantages of wide span of control are:
  • There are less layers of management to pass a message through, so the message reaches more employees faster
  •  It costs less money to run a wider span of control because a business does not need to employ as many managers
The advantages of a narrow span of control are:
  • A narrow span of control allows a manager to communicate quickly with the employees under them and control them more easily
  • Feedback of ideas from the workers will be more effective
  • It requires a higher level of management skill to control a greater number of employees, so there is less management skill required


Karen Yuen
Karen Yuen
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