Division of work, being concerned with the allocation of activities in order to achieve economies of effort, does not automatically provide for coordination.
The needs and facilitation of coordination is seen as being influenced by two principal items:
- the degree and type of division of work
- the environment of the organization.
To satisfy this need two principal types of coordination are used:
- coordination by plan wherein long-term, fixed plans and schedules are used
- coordination by feedback, where provisions are made for the flow of information about the work being coordinated.
Coordination is seen as the task of facilitation linked activities.
The process has two fundamental elements:
- determination of adequate programs for these activities
- communication to signal what program is to be used or the conditions for which a program is necessary and when action is needed.
Faced with a need for action, an individual might have a range of conditions to contend with in selecting a program; from those where programs are available, complete, and detailed to those where a program will have to be developed either through searching somewhere else for it, adapting an existing one, or creating a new one.
Communications are seen to have a wide range of forms from the specific, precise instruction or order, to the general information about the state of the organization and its environment.
The existence of these wide variations and the basic elements of coordination suggest the need for multiple means of achieving coordination from which the most acceptable element or a combination of them can be chosen.
The essential task in providing coordination is to find the best combination of these possibilities that can satisfy the coordinative needs of the organization.
Coordination is essentially an organizational problem. The extend and magnitude of the coordinative task is substantially influenced by other organizational decisions.
The task itself can be accomplished by a number of combinations of several different means.