Organizational Structure of MSD St. Louis

Topics: Board of directors, Trustee, Corporate governance Pages: 6 (1138 words) Published: October 9, 2014

Organizational Structure of MSD St. Louis
Natasa Margraf-White
September 1, 2014
Cedrina Charbonnet

Organizational Structure of MSD St. Louis
The structure of an organization is the foundation for which the functionality of a company is based. It establishes a chain of command, indicating the different levels of responsibility in regards to the hierarchy of the company, the delegation of duties and the decision making process that is utilized. For business large and small there are three general structure types to consider; vertical, horizontal, and matrix with each having their own strengths and weaknesses. For most the use of these structures is dependent on the size and complexity of the business and most often a company will incorporate different aspects of two or more structures. The concept of using aspects from multiple structures is something that can be viewed at MSD, a city municipality responsible for the “interception, collection and treatment of wastewater, as well as stormwater management”. (“MSD Responsibilities”, 2014) MSD’s Organizational Structure

As established MSD is an organization that utilizes multiple structures to maintain a functioning business, however the core organizational structure is vertical. The vertical structure as establish by Bateman and Snell (2011, p. 278) pertains to the “authority within an organization, the board of directors, the chief executive officer, and hierarchical levels, as well as issues pertaining to delegation and decentralization.” At MSD this is reflected by the establishment of several levels of authority, including a board of trustees, rate commission, CEO and corresponding directors and last management staff. The trustee board members are appointed three by the city mayor and three by the city county and are responsible for looking out for the interest of the customers, not of MSD. Additionally the board is also responsible for electing an individual for the position of CEO and corresponding directors. The next level of authority is with the 15 members of the rate commission, each from a different organization and all of which regulate and proposes changes to the rates for wastewater, stormwater, and taxes to the board of trustees. From this point it is the companies CEO, company directors for each major department and assistant directors. The next level of authority falls in line with a more horizontal structure with each major department containing sub-departments each with their own manager and assistant. Incorporated into this second minor structure is the use of project managers, then lastly all remaining employees.

The use of the vertical structure creates limitations at each level, limiting the influence and control available at each level and establishes the individual responsibilities of each party. Instead of one person having control and responsibility of all functions of the business, it is divided into departments, such as human resources, finance, engineering, general counsel, information technology, and secretary treasurer. Each of these departments is run by a team of managers, who report to a director, and follows back to the CEO and board of trustees. Unlike a matrix structure which has employees reporting to multiple members of management, employees are only required to report to the project manager who is then responsible for corresponding with other departments. Since MSD utilizes aspects from two structures, it would suggest that large more complex and diverse companies require the use of both a hierarchal structure as well as functional departmentalization. Unlike a simple mom and pop operation that relies on the decision of the store owner, larger companies require smaller departments to distribute the work load. Information and operations that center on employees work performance; personal information and pay are generally handled by human resources....

References: MSD Responsibilities (2014). Retrieved August 30, 2014, from
Organization Overview (2014). Retrieved August 30, 2014, from
Bateman, T.S. & Snell, S.A. (2011). Management: Leading & Collaborating in a competitive world. (9th ed.) New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Irwin.
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