A functional structure is a commonly used in company’s and organizations around the world

Discussion # 1

Term: Functional Structure


A functional structure is a commonly used in company’s and organizations around the world. The definition of what a functional structure is “A functional structure is one of the most common organizational structures. Under this structure, the organization groups employees according to a specialized or similar set of roles or tasks.” (Davoren, 2013) The functional structure of an organization is very important to establish and operate correctly, as it the backbone of how a business is functionally structured.

Summarization of Article

The article “The Functional Structure Convergence of China’s Coastal Ports” look at the functional structure of port systems throughout China. This study looked at the transportation function throughout the costal ports of China and looked at the cargo structure was used to get cargo throughout the countries ports. The study found that transportation functional structure was very similar in terms of outbound cargo structure that was close in proximity to each other. (Wang, Wang, & Jin, 2017, p. 1) The study also found that function of the ports function of being outbound or inbound had a big impact on how their functional structure was set up. The study concluded that the” transport geography, improves our understanding of China’s port transportation system, and can provide reference for policy-makers in their port development decisions.”(Site) This articled showed how important a good functional structure is for a company and without a good functional structure in place a company is bound to struggle.

Compare and Contrast Articles

The article “Ecological Indicators” was a study done on the functional structure of the ecological integrity of stream ecosystem and their response to natural and anthropogenic disturbance. They studied used leaf bags and surber nets to simulate a disturbance to these functional structures in the ecosystems. The researched concluded that leaf bags had a more complex functional structure to withstand a natural and anthropogenic than the surber nets did. (Di Sabatino et al., 2014, p. 89) This article was different than the first article, because it looked at how China’s port functional structure was set up to operate cargo throughout its countries ports and this article looked at how ecosystems functional structure work when dealing with a disturbance.

The next article described functional structure was titled “Challenges of control in functional organization structures: Example of outsourcing sector” This articled looked at the challenges that face a business when they decide to outsource some or all of their work and the challenges that it present with functional structure. The research concluded that the key findings were company must build trust and relationships when outsource their company’s work. The main challenging this study found of functional structure and outsourcing was “knowledge management, control split and owners, new processes flows, virtual teams.” (Maciejczyk, 2016, p. 59) This article articled was different than the first one in it was looking at a functional system of a countries port systems and the other article looked at an ecosystems functional system and how it was effected by a disturbance.

The last article that I read was about brain functional structure and the article was titled “Resolving Anatomical and Functional Structure in Human Brain Organization.” This article talked about a study on the brain and how it is functional structured to do certain things for us. The “Human brain anatomy and function display a combination of modular and hierarchical organization.” (Lohse, Bassett, Lim, & Carlson, 2014, p. 1) This suggests the brain gives importance of cohesive structures, variable resolution and functional structure and in turn enables a healthy cognitive processes. The study concluded after putting the brain through multiply tests and applying different test measure to it that it “enables more focused mechanistic hypotheses for altered connectivity profiles in clinical states where network organization might be perturbed in one resolution (weak or local connections) more than in another (strong or long connections).” (Lohse, Bassett, Lim, & Carlson, 2014, p. 15) In simple terms that do to the brain functional structure it can handle multiply of different test that were thrown at it and functions just fine and in most cases function without with little to no problems at all. This article was far different than the other three that I looked at, because it was dealing with our brains and how they are functional structured to handle a variety of situations and tests.

Biblical Integration

The course scripture that goes with functional structured is found in Deuteronomy 23 and it states; “The idea seemed good to me; so I selected twelve of you, one man from each tribe. 24 They left and went up into the hill country, and came to the Valley of Eshcol and explored it. 25 Taking with them some of the fruit of the land, they brought it down to us and reported, “It is a good land that the LORD our God is giving us.” This correlates, because one person from each of their tribe’s functional structure was picked to go and spread the good news of lord.

YouTube Video Integration

The YouTube video that describes and explains what functional structure is titled “Functional Organizational Structure | Organizational Design | Mean That” Uploaded by Mean That on Sept 10, 2015. In this videos it described what functional structure is and how it is important for a business to figure out their functional structure when first starting out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Rp_62RksTw


Functional Structure is important for a business to operate effectively and efficiently. Functional structure separates business groups into functional specialties and enables the company to have separate departments that specialize in one thing. Without a sound functional structure in place, then a business will operate less effectively and efficiently and this could ultimately end up the business failing and closing its doors. Functional structure is very important to a company success and without it you have not backbone of how that business should and will function.


Davoren, J. (2013, January 5). Functional Structure Organization Strength & Weakness. Retrieved from http://smallbusiness.chron.com/functional-structure-organization-strength-weakness-60111.html

Di Sabatino, A., Cristiano, G., Pinna, M., Lombardo, P., Miccoli, F. P., Marini, G., … Cicolani, B. (2014). Structure, functional organization and biological traits of macroinvertebrate assemblages from leaf-bags and benthic samples in a third-order stream of Central Apennines (Italy). Ecological Indicators, 46, 84-91. doi:10.1016/j.ecolind.2014.06.005

Lohse, C., Bassett, D. S., Lim, K. O., & Carlson, J. M. (2014). Resolving Anatomical and Functional Structure in Human Brain Organization: Identifying Mesoscale Organization in Weighted Network Representations. PLoS Computational Biology, 10(10), 1-17. doi:10.1371/journal.pcbi.1003712

Maciejczyk, A. (2016). Challenges of control in functional organization structures:Example of outsourcing sector. Journal of Economics and Management, 25, 48-62. doi:10.22367/jem.2016.25.04

Wang, W., Wang, C., & Jin, F. (2017). The Functional Structure Convergence of China’s Coastal Ports. Sustainability, 9(12), 1-15. doi:10.3390/su9122185

Discussion # 2

Term: Training Fade-Out

Definition of term

Training is a vital element in the behavior process in transitioning into a new job or role. The skill is learned often in a hands-on style and the focus is that that skill will transfer into the job performance. However, the issue with training is that often the application piece begins to lack at some point or another, which is termed training fade-out. Within the work of Spector (2013) training fade-out is defined as the failure of learned behaviors to transition into on the job practices (Spector, 2013).


Within the work of Hoffman, Kelley, and Rotalsky (2016) it is asserted that training or service failures are inevitable, and this is grounded by the fact of human nature (Hoffman, Kelley, & Rotalsky,2016). The reality of training is that when an individual is being closely monitored on a task or skill the behavior to comply is apparent, especially if that skill or task has a direct effect on employment. Training fade-out is an issue that plagues all facets of the employment sector, as may employees have found what works best from them individually rather than the new skill. This is where behavior observation becomes a major element of the job performance evaluation of the employee.


The work of Almeida & Aterido (2015) asserts that investing into human capital can be identified as a component of individual human development (Almeida & Aterido, 2015). With this understanding investing into the training of employees to promote a mutual sense of growth for both the employee as well as the employer. When training fade-out is introduced into the training strategy there is a major cause for concern. Being that the company has invested into the employee the employee should be able and will to transition those skills or practices into everyday job application. However, when the training begins to fade-out and the employee reverts back to the way of comfortability, the investment is turned into a loss in terms of employee development as well as continued growth and success of the company.

The article presented by Mason and Bishop (2014) asserts that on the job training is an important aspect, however adult worker’s fail to upgrade skillsets to the standards as deemed necessary (Mason & Bishop, 2014). This work explains the training fade-out in a way that adult workers are simply unable to grasp the task to move forward in continued employee development. For instance, the introduction of technology to a fifty-year old adult for a job that has been manually done for the past twenty years is next to impossible. With someone standing over top of them directly providing on the job training this task appears to be able to be integrated into the tasks ahead. However, once they are released to apply the skill training fade-out takes precedence as they are grounded in manually doing the work and the new skills fade-out.

Biblical Connection

The King James Bible states in 2 Timothy 3:17 “that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works” (2 Timothy 3:17, King James Bible). With this understanding in order to perfect the craft and do work, man must be equipped with the tools to be as best as possible.

YouTube Video

The video “The Importance of Employee Training” by Corporate Culture Revolution on Youtube explains that growth is mysterious and requires many different ingredients. It further explains that ingredients for successful training and ultimately how training fade-out is able to be combatted.


Almeida, R. K., & Aterido, R. (2015). Investing in formal on-the-job training: Are SMEs

lagging much behind? IZA Journal of Labor & Development, 4(1), 1-23.


Hoffman, K. D., Kelley, S. W., & Rotalsky, H. M. (2016). Retrospective: Tracking service

failures and employee recovery efforts. The Journal of Services Marketing, 30(1), 7-10. Retrieved fromhttp://ezproxy.liberty.edu/login?url=https://search-proquest-com.ezproxy.liberty.edu/docview/1764123130?accountid=12085

Mason, G., & Bishop, K. (2014). The Impact of Recession on Adult Training: Evidence

from the United Kingdom in 2008-2009. British Journal of Industrial Relations,53(4),

736-759. doi:10.1111/bjir.12057

Discussion # 3

Term: Technology


In his literature review, Li-Hua (2007) offers a perspective on the definition of technology. He maintains that science or knowledge that is put into practical use to solve problems or invent useful tools is referred to as technology. The term technology is used broadly to explain new inventions and gadgets using recently derived scientific principles and processes. Technology is the field that applies science to solve problems with an industrial or commercial end in mind. Technology is used to simplify work effort and develop more advanced economies (Spector, 2013).

Summary of Article

Network optimization technologies help companies develop forward-looking scenarios that identify dollar-value impact and associated risks (Goldsby & Zinn, 2016). The evolution of supply chain technology, from maturing to growth to emerging technology, is further shaping the industry. “Organizations must evolve their business models to leverage the opportunities presented with the advent of these technologies” (p. 80). Companies that continue to depend on traditional supply chain technologies and models will expectedly find it increasingly problematic to stay competitive and meet customer anticipations for orders that are complete, accurate and on-time. Goldsby and Zinn (2016) conclude that technology innovation efforts should not only focus on new products but should also address business model innovations focused on the people, networks, processes, services or channels which can have a unique impact on supply chain performance.

Compare and Contrast Articles

“Maturing technologies can create dramatic improvements in efficiency and service” (Linton, 2017, p. 62). These technologies have reached their tipping point as evidenced by adoption levels expected to reach 80% to 90% by 2019. Companies holding off on deploying maturing technologies may find themselves struggling to keep pace with competitors as these technologies become industry standards. Inventory optimization, Sensors and automatic identification, Cloud computing and storage, Robotics and automation and included in the list of maturing technologies. Emerging technologies are critical for the continued development and renewal of the economy and non-economic but societally beneficial gains. Linton (2017) coined the phrase Emerging Technology Supply Chains (ETSC). He defines them as “the relationships and flows between the ‘string’ of operations and processes that initiate, evolve and develop during the determination of the art and associated techniques of doing something novel to produce value in the form of new products and new services to the ultimate consumer” (p. 63).

Today׳s supply chain professionals are overwhelmed with data, prompting new ways of thinking about how data are analyzed, produced, and organized. Gunasekaran, Papadopoulos, Dubey, et al. (2017) argue that the ever-increasing availability and growth of big data are transforming the way that organizations approach data analytics. Their findings suggest that connectivity and information sharing under the mediation effect of top management commitment are positively related to supply chain and organizational performance. Predictive analytics provide vital insights into the correlation of data but not into causality or the way the data trends in one way or another. While these analytics help leaders and key decision makers connect the dots on relationships of data points, further research is needed to understand causation and tendencies.

Heightened competition, tailored and demanding customer requirements and market structure have been driving forces for emerging technologies like Additive Manufacturing (AM), commonly known as 3D printing (Oettmeier & Hofmann, 2016). AM is an umbrella term for a group of technologies that create physical products through the addition of materials rather than by subtraction. 3D printing “refers to not one, but multiple technologies and manufacturing processes that enable users to create a tangible object from a digital three-dimensional model” (p. 951). Oettmeier and Hofmann (2016) provide a systematic analysis of the effects of additive manufacturing technology adoption on supply chain management processes and components in an engineer-to-order environment. Their findings suggest that a change from manual engineer-to-order production to AM has the potential to increase the division of labor in manufacturing. Use cases include scenarios such as customers wanting highly customized car accessories or medical advancements around implants and surgery models. It should also be noted that critics raise concerns about uses (i.e., 3D printed guns) and the certain “intellectual property issues that the increasing adoption of AM technologies will create” (Oettmeier & Hofmann, 2016, p. 962).

YouTube Integration

Technology can be viewed as an activity that forms or changes the culture. In the video produced by Amazon (2018), Alexa, an intelligent digital personal assistant, loses her voice and causes a panic where Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has to go with Plan B, which is substitute voices from celebrities Cari B, Gordon Ramsey, Rebel Wilson and Sir Anthony Hopkins in various scenes where one would typically use Alexa. Technology has become an essential accessory in our everyday lives, so much that we humans depend on it. This video is a perfect example of how the human culture is changing to rely more and more on technology. Historically, the task of looking up information consisted of searching through books, encyclopedias or other paper sources to get the limited information that was able to be found. Now, all one has to do is speak a question into a digital box and within seconds the answer is available. One might ask if this cultural shift is moving too quickly or even heading in the right direction.

Biblical Integration

Matthew 13 (NIV) describes the parable of the sower. Sowers do not limit themselves to certain soils; instead, they spread seeds everywhere, including rocks, thorns, or other soils thought to be less fertile. Oftentimes, these seeds are able to flourish into something beautiful. As Christians, we are expected to do the same. We should not be selective in whom we extend ourselves to, but rather aim to spread Christ’s message to as many people as possible. Technology lets us connect with a bigger audience than ever before. This allows God’s message to reach further than may have been possible without it.


Amazon. (2018. January 31). Alexa Loses Her Voice – Amazon Super Bowl LII Commercial. [Video File]. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/J6-8DQALGt4

Goldsby, T. J., & Zinn, W. (2016). Technology innovation and new business models: Can logistics and supply chain research accelerate the evolution? Journal of Business Logistics, 37(2), 80-81. doi:10.1111/jbl.12130

Gunasekaran, A., Papadopoulos, T., Dubey, R., Wamba, S. F., Childe, S. J., Hazen, B., & Akter, S. (2017). Big data and predictive analytics for supply chain and organizational performance. Journal of Business Research, 70, 308-317. doi:10.1016/j.jbusres.2016.08.004

Li-Hua, R. (2007). What is technology? Journal of Technology Management in China, 2(3)10.1108/jtmc.2007.30202caa.001

Linton, J. D. (2017). Emerging technology supply chains. Technovation, 62-63, 1. doi:10.1016/j.technovation.2017.04.004

Oettmeier, K., & Hofmann, E. (2016). Impact of additive manufacturing technology adoption on supply chain management processes and components. Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, 27(7), 944-968. doi:10.1108/JMTM-12-2015-0113

Spector, B. (2013). Implementing organizational change: Theory into practice. (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

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