Specialisation of Labour

When you are training new employees it is important to keep your organisations specialisation (or division) of labour in mind. Specialisation of labour refers to the way organisational jobs are divided and subdivided to ensure that they are properly completed. As a manager you may be responsible for breaking a task down into parts and then assigning each part to a different individual.

Specialisation of labour has its benefits and drawbacks. On the one hand you will have a highly specialised workforce in which each person, responsible for only one task, can contribute his very best work. Because employees are allowed to specialise they are more likely to work efficiently and get more done.

On the other hand, you can’t overuse the idea of specialisation. If an employee is only allowed to do one repeatedly he will easily become tired – both physically and mentally. When fatigue sets in he will suddenly become more likely to make mistakes. He’ll also become bored with his job and will begin to start calling out more frequently.

If you want to ensure that individuals have specialised tasks than you need to build those tasks into a complete job description. In order to remain productive and safe you’ll need to stay away from specialising simple tasks alone!

Thanks again,

Sean

Sean McPheat

Managing Director

MTD Training   | Image courtesy of Big Stock Photo

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Originally published: 27 July, 2009



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