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Pfizer Case Study (Case Study Sample)

This sample was a case study on Pfizer. The first part addressed how the new system at Pfizer, dubbed Office of the Future, which allowed employees to outsource support and routine tasks to Indian companies, had enhanced organizational performance. The first part of the paper discussed how the components of organizational design, including work specialization, chain of command, departmentalization, decentralization, span of control, and formalization had improved as a result of the new system. The second part discussed how the new system had improved employee motivation, engagement, and productivity. source..
Pfizer Case Study Student’s Name Institutional Affiliation Pfizer Case Study Question 1 Pfizer’s senior director of organizational effectiveness has developed a strategy to improve employee productivity by outsourcing routine tasks. With the new Office of the Future (OOF) system, employees can outsource support work to Indian companies, allowing them to focus on the more important tasks that create value for the company, such as innovation, strategy, and critical thinking. The new system has significantly cut the time employees spend performing routine activities and has enhanced organizational performance. In light of the elements of organizational design, the new approach has positive and negative structural implications for Pfizer. The components of organizational design are work specialization, chain of command, departmentalization, centralization versus decentralization, span of control, and formalization. The new approach has enhanced work specialization. Initially, employees were performing their primary tasks in addition to clerical activities, creating little scope for specialization. With the new system, however, employees can focus on high-value and complex activities. Every employee will become specialized in their core area of activity. The central aim of work specialization is that one individual does not perform the entire job. The task is broken down into several steps, and a specific person completes each step. This saves time, improves employee productivity, and enhances the quality of output (Burton et al., 2015). Thus, the new approach introduced by Mr. Cohen will increase employee and organizational performance. However, Mr. Cohen should ensure that employees are given the opportunity to learn other crucial tasks, for example, through employee rotation, because too much specialization leads to repetitive tasks, making employees less motivated. The new approach has flattened the chain of command. The OOF has delegated the power to secure jobs, assign resources, deliver output, and manage project timelines without prior direction or approval from their managers. They can also manage invoices and directly pay for the work from their cost center and provide feedback on the process and work done. This has reduced the workforce’s reliance on their supervisors, enabling faster communication and decision-making. It has created a dynamic environment where employees are more flexible in performing tasks, increasing the efficiency and performance of Pfizer’s workforce. Regarding centralization versus decentralization, the OOF has created a more decentralized organization. In a centralized organization, decision-making power is concentrated at a single point, usually the top management (Burton et al., 2015). Executive managers make decisions with little or no input from subordinates. Decentralization entails allowing lower-level employees to make decisions and provide input for key decisions. Pfizer is a large organization with thousands of employees performing distributed and specialized tasks. Employees have a better understanding of problems and are better equipped to solve them than top managers. By increasing decentralization, the newly introduced system could facilitate diversification, motivate subordinates, and enable quicker and better decisions. This will reduce the burden on mid and top-level management. Additionally, it will allow employees to gain a thorough knowledge of the assignments under their control, which will enhance organizational effectiveness. Departmentalization is the division of organizational functions according to responsibilities or job specialization, such that common tasks are handled by the same team (Robbins et al., 2019). Departments can be grouped by geographical location, product line, customers, functions. The newly introduced system at Pfizer has led to a rigid departmentalization. Routine tasks are outsourced to enable employees to focus on the more valuable work that requires skill and specialization. Pfizer has a matrix departmentalization based on functions and geographical location. Although not clearly set out in the organizational structure, the company has established an outsourced routine tasks department located in India. The benefits of departmentalization are that it would enhance operational clarity and speed (Weiss, 2007). It has clarified the allocation of assignments and organizational responsibility, eliminating duplication of tasks and making it easier for management to determine the appropriate employees for each task. Thus, individuals and teams can perform assignments faster. However, the new approach has a negative implication with regard to departmentalization in that it may lead to staff having narrow viewpoints due to specialization. Employees may not be knowledgeable about all areas and operations of the organization as some of the tasks they perform have been outsourced. The new system also an implication on the span of control, which refers to the number of employees under a manager's supervision. Since employees have greater autonomy in decision-making, they will require less supervision leading to a larger or wider span of control. Moreover, employees are performing core tasks that require knowledge application and creative thinking – tasks that do not require close supervision. For example, under the new system, a manager who was supervising twenty subordinates can now manage thirty or forty employees. The wider span of control has a negative impact on employee performance because managers are no longer available to provide individualized support and leadership to their subordinates (Ross, 2021). Another element of organizational design is formalization. Formalization is the extent to which tasks are standardized and the degree to which organizational rules and procedures guide the behavior of employees (Burton et al., 2015). In a highly formalized organizational structure, employee behavior is strictly bound by rules and codes of conduct, and the staff has little freedom in deciding what to do, how to do it, and when to do it (Robbins et al., 2019). Additionally, inputs are standardized, resulting in a uniform and consistent output. Pfizer’s new approach entails a lower degree of formalization as employees have greater freedom in their work performance. The low formalization will lead to greater efficiency in goal achievement by employees. Question 2 The new system encourages specialization but has a low degree of formality and standardization. It has enhanced the decision-making ability of employees and encouraged lateral and upward communication. Staff members have increased independence over the performance of tasks, as they can manage the whole process of having routine assignments performed while they concentrate on the core organizational problems. The new system's objective is to achieve a higher level of innovation, knowledge creation, and critical thinking by employees, and this requires a less rigid structure to allow employees to cultivate ideas.   The new system will, therefore, increase employee motivation and engagement. When employees have greater independence in performing their jobs, they are more committed to work and the organization. They put their best efforts into the tasks they are responsible for. It also increases employee satisfaction leading to positive growth (Singh, 2013). The new approach has created a flexible working environment for Pfizer employees, which will enhance their commitment and job satisfaction and consequently making them more motivated. Pfizer’s employees are Harvard graduates, which means they are highly skilled. Performing clerical and repetitive tasks which are more clerical meant that although they were highly skilled, their knowledge and skills were not put to work. This can lead to employees feeling unde...
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