How to make a functional organizational chart


Among the different organizational chart formats that exist, the functional organizational chart is one of the most widespread. This provides a graphic representation of the functions performed in a company and the functional relationships between the various employees. This organizational chart is therefore a good way to understand how a company works.

What is a Functional Organizational Chart?

The functional organization chart is an organizational structure based on the different functions of a company. It makes it possible to represent the employees and the functions they occupy as well as the roles and responsibilities associated with them. In this type of organization chart, the company is presented as a hierarchical structure.

The functional organization chart is a tool that organizes the functions within the company according to the purpose of the job or post. It can also have sub-categories that fall under a particular function. This type of organization chart is structured with the managers at the top and the other collaborators at the bottom. Schematically, it is represented as follows:

  • First, we find the leader of the company at the forefront of the organizational chart.
  • Then, the organization chart is divided into different services or departments: production, sales, human resources, marketing, operations, research and development, etc.
  • Finally, just below the services, the different work teams are detailed.

In general, the functional organization chart is graphically schematized vertically. This is why it can also be considered as a vertical flowchart. However, what characterizes the functional organization chart is its orderly appearance. Indeed, it is a structural representation which is organized according to the specific skills of each employee, which provides a global approach to the company.

Thanks to the functional organization chart, we can see that an employee receives orders from a competent person in a particular area without there being any real hierarchical link. This is how the company works with the interacting missions. The functional organization chart also makes it possible to identify the members of a project team who are outside the hierarchical links. It then gives employees a precise idea of ​​the people they should contact and the responsibilities of the employees taking part in the project.

The interest of a functional flowchart

The creation of a functional organization chart makes it possible to define specific functions for each department and for each employee working in each department. This provides a global and clear vision of the different positions that exist in a company as well as the specific function of each area. The functional organization chart has the advantage of being easy to understand for all employees who work for the company, whether on site or externally. To be understandable, it also highlights the purpose of the functions, roles or services.

The functional flowchart can be used for different use cases:

  • optimization of the organization and operation of a company;
  • welcoming a new employee;
  • better understanding of interprofessional relationships;
  • response to various issues;
  • identification and analysis of malfunctions.

The functional organization chart is above all a tool that finds all its usefulness in large companies. Indeed, the structure of companies of this size does not always include all employees, but is based on the functions of specific positions.

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How to create a functional organization chart?

  1. Identify business functions and services
  2. Collect information from each employee and teams
  3. Fill in the information collected in the organization chart
  4. Design a visual flowchart
  5. Create a clear and readable organizational chart
  6. Validate the organization chart
  7. Choose your distribution method
  8. Update it regularly

Identify business functions and services

The first step in creating a functional organizational chart is to list all the functions and departments that exist within the company. It is also important to identify the relationships between each of these elements.

Collect information from each employee and teams

The next step consists in collecting a certain amount of information concerning the employees and the work teams. It is a question of discussing with the collaborators in order to know the names, roles and responsibilities of each one as well as the person in charge of each service. This will also be an opportunity to obtain information on the functioning of the work teams.

In addition, you have to remember to take a photo of each employee. All this data will be used to determine the information that should appear on the organizational chart. The collection of information can take place in a chronological order coinciding with the hierarchical order of the organization chart, starting with the management and then descending to the following levels.

Fill in the information collected in the organization chart

After having gathered all the information related to the employees and their position, it is necessary to communicate on the functional organization chart. The data that must appear there are the surname and first name of each employee, their position and the department in which they work. The identification of the hierarchical links of the organization chart is done according to the distribution of the personnel.

Design a visual flowchart

It should not be forgotten that the functional organization chart is above all a visual tool. First of all, the photos of the employees must be inserted in the organization chart. It will help everyone easily put a face to a name and get to know each other better. Special attention should also be paid to the choice of different colors and shapes to be used to visually represent services and links. These colors and shapes, and in particular the arrows or lines illustrating the relationships, must imperatively be explained in a legend.

Create a clear and readable organizational chart

For the functional organization chart to be perfectly understandable for all employees, it is essential to ensure its readability. This document must therefore be presented in a clear and airy manner without too much information. The ideal for large companies is to opt for the creation of a global organizational chart. Then, a more detailed organizational chart must be made for each service.

Validate the organization chart

Once completed, the functional organization chart must be validated by the management of the company. Validation can also be done with each service.

Choose the distribution mode of the flowchart

The next step is to determine how the functional flowchart will be disseminated. Internal, external: it may be accessible to company employees, but also to outsiders such as customers, suppliers, partners, and even the general public. The distribution channels will also have to be defined and the file format studied according to each of them: posting on a website, PDF download on an intranet or even printing in a welcome booklet.

Regularly update the organization chart

Finally, it is necessary to take into account the fact that each company is regularly confronted with changes in terms of staff: arrivals, departures, internal transfers. As a result, the functional organization chart can quickly become obsolete. Faced with such changes, it is therefore necessary to think about regularly updating the organization chart. The date of update must also appear on the last updated version of the organization chart.

Wrap up

Charts are great ways to display how your business is organized graphically. The key to a good functional chart is to keep it as simple as possible and not to allow interdepartmental rivalries to arise accidentally. Furthermore, the software you buy to create functional charts should be at a good price, have excellent reviews and work well with your existing software. If you follow these recommendations, your available chart will improve the efficiency of your workplace.

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