Organisation and Management Structures

Modified on Mon, 07 Aug 2023 at 09:50 AM

Organisational Structure
Organisational structure is the name of the system used within an organisation to define levels of authority within an organisation. It identifies the roles, the teams, and the reporting lines for each position within the organisation.

Different levels of authority are often referred to as a hierarchy which means some positions have more decision-making authority within the organisation than others. Usually the more senior a position (the higher in the organisation hierarchy) the more authority is attached to that position and often more staff or volunteers who report to that position.

Management Structure
What a Board (including volunteer board members) does is governance; what the staff or volunteers do is management. The functions are separate and different, but they should operate in partnership.

The Committee of Management or Board
The committee of management, sometimes also called the board of an incorporated association has total authority, under the law, until some of that authority is given away (delegated) to others. It is at the head of the group or organisation’s structure of governance.

Final decisions on important issues must always pass by the committee of management or board. It is up to the committee of management or board to create the other organisational structures that will make it possible to carry out the mission.

The Chief Executive Officer
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) (may also be known by other titles such as General Manager, Chief Executive or other equivalent tile within the organisation) and the committee of management share responsibility for leadership within the group or organisation but they fulfill this responsibility in different ways. While the board has ultimate power and carries most of the legal responsibility for the group or organisation’s actions, the CEO’s power is more immediate, involving day-to-day influence.

The Leader of Volunteers
For many volunteer engaging organisations a specific leader of volunteers role will be in place to provide management andsupport for the organisation’s volunteer team.

Even if it’s not a stand alone role, an assigned member of staff or a senior volunteer may be appointed as a primary person for volunteers to liaise with, take instruction from and raise any concerns or issues.

Leaders of volunteers are generally responsible for ensuring an organisation has enough volunteers to fulfill its mission.

For more information on Organisation and Management Structures please download the Quick Guide

Quick Guide

This downloadable resource has been developed under the National Volunteer Management Activity project.


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