Organizational modelling in business analysis

An organizational model describes how an organization is arranged. The goal of an organizational unit is to unite a group of people to achieve a common goal. It is used to define the roles, responsibilities, and
reporting structures in an organization.

An organizational model is a chart which shows the grouping of the organizational units. They describe the following:

  1. Who is in the group.
  2. Who reports to whom in the group.
  3. The functional role for each member of the group.
  4. The association and dependencies between the unit and other units or stakeholders.

Organizational modelling has different components, which include:

1. Types of organizational models:
There are three main organizational models and they are:
Functionally-oriented: in this type of model, the organizational employes are grouped together based on their areas of expertise.

Functional organizations are beneficial because they can help with cost management, reduce work duplication and inspire uniformity of processes within the organization. But they can also lead to communication and collaborative problems.

Market-oriented: this is the arrangement of the organization into marketing groups so that they may assist specific customer groups, geographical regions, projects, or processes .

Market-oriented structures allow the organization to fulfill the needs of its customers, but it is susceptible to process inconsistencies and duplication of effort.

The matrix model: in this model type both the functional and market-oriented organization models were merged into one. So each functional area and product, service, or customer group has a manager.

These managers are in charge of employee performance, process improvements and product and services management across multi-functional areas.

This model has the advantage of increased efficiencies but it could also lead to increased employee dissatisfaction because they are reporting to two managers (i.e. the functional and product managers) with differing organizational objectives.

Matrix Organizational Model

2. Roles: An organizational unit has a number of established roles. Each role requires a specified set of skills and knowledge, has certain responsibilities, does specific tasks, and has specific relationships with other roles in the organization.

3. Interfaces: each organizational unit has interactions with other organizational units. Interfaces include communication with people in other roles and work products received from or sent to other units.

4. Organizational charts: The organizational chart is used in organizational modelling and while there are no universally accepted standard for organizational charts, there are some protocols that most organizational charts should follow.

These protocols are:

Boxes are used to depict the following:
a. Organizational unit: An organizational chart can combine organizational units and people, teams and divisions.
b. Roles and people: the people within an organization should be give a role.

• A line is use to depict:
1. Lines of reporting: these are the people accountable between units. A solid line usually indicates a direct authority, while a dotted line indicates
information transfer or a temporary authority. Lines of reporting show
the relationship between a manager and an organizational unit.

5 Influencers: the business analysts has to identify informal lines of authority, influence, and communication which may not be shown in the typical organizational chart.

An influencer is anyone who is has important information or directs and advises other stakeholders.

The business analyst can ask the stakeholders open ended questions such as “Who can I ask…” in order to identify influencers. Identifying influencers is essential in communication planning and user acceptance.

Organizational modelling has both its strengths and limitations, which include:


  • Knowing the stakeholders and influencers roles in the organizational model can assist helps project team members with user support.
  • Future initiatives may benefit from knowing who was involved in this project and what their roles were.


  • Organizational models have to be regularly maintained or they would become outdated and obsolete.
  • It could be difficult and time consuming to identify influencers and when they are identified they may conflict with other people in the organizational chart.