Functional Authority

809 WordsMar 14, 20134 Pages
FUNCTIONAL AUTHORITY: Functional authority consists of the right to give orders within a segment of the organization in which this right is normally non existent. This authority is usually assigned to individuals to complement the line or staff authority they already possess. Functional Authority generally covers only specific task areas and is operational only for designated amounts of time. It is given to individuals who, in order to meet responsibilities in their own areas, must be able to exercise some control over organization members in other areas. : Functional Authority: Staff's ability to initiate actions within a given area of expertise. Functional Authority allows decisions to be implemented directly by the staff. In an…show more content…
Delegation of Functional Authority One can better understand functional authority by thinking of it as a small slice o the authority of a line superior. A corporation president, for example, has complete authority to manage a corporation, subject only to limitations placed by such superior authority as the board of directors, the corporate charter and by laws, and government regulations. In the pure staff situation, the advisers on personnel, accounting, purchasing, or public relations have no part of this line authority, their duty being merely to offer counsel. But when the president delegates to these advisers the right to issue instructions directly to the line organizations that right is called functional authority. The four staff and service executives have functional authority over the line organization with respect to procedures in the fields of accounting, personnel, purchasing, and public relations. What has happened is that the president, feeling it is unnecessary to clear such specialized matters personally, has delegated line authority to staff assistants (or managers) to issue their own instruction to the operating department. Of course, subordinate managers can use the same device, as in the case of a factory superintendent who delegates to cost, production control, and quality control supervisors the functional authority to prescribe procedures for the
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