Division of labor

Division of Labor Division of labor is a managerial concept that refers to the specialization of cooperating individualstasked with the duty of performing specified tasks, roles and responsibilities within an organization or a particular setting. Division of labor exists in both industrial settings as well as bureaucratic settings. As such, both perspectives adopt a different approach to the concept of division of labor.
Industrial division of labor refers to the narrow specialization of tasks within a production process. As such, industrial division of labor enables each worker to perfect his or her skill in a given line of production, or a particular production process, whereby he or she ends up as a specialist in doing one thing. Workers gain more experience while performing these tasks, especially those working on an assembly line. It is imperative to note that division of labor was a major motive force that spurred economic growth during the traditional industries era. However, the terms of trade have changed with the invention of the new era of mass customization, which requires very short change over times and multiple skills, as division of labor has now become a lot more flexible. In fact, it has acquired a new name, whereby it’s termed as specialization of labor, and as such, requires workers to specialize in a given item in the line of production.
The professional bureaucrat is chained to his activity by his entire material and ideal existence. “ The individual bureaucrat is thus forged to the community of all the functionaries who are integrated into the mechanism,” slide 5
A good example of industrial division of labor is the workers at a candy factory. Each worker has a particular task assigned to him or her. One worker may be in charge of monitoring the caramel. Another worker may be in charge of monitoring the chocolate. A third worker may be in charge of the packaging process. As such, the three workers put their efforts together to bring about a sweet candy, multiplying the productivity of the company. However, in the event one of these workers feels that his or her work is no longer essential in making up the product, he or she becomes alienated from the process of labor.
“ Adam Smith: The division of labour … is not originally the effect of any human wisdom … It is the necessary, though very slow and gradual consequence of the propensity to truck, barter and exchange one thing for another,” Early Writing 369.
On the other hand, bureaucratic division of labor refers to the breakdown of a specific task into component parts in which case different people are assigned to work on the different parts of each task. Bureaucracy is the process of carrying out community action into rationally ordered actions, and as such, division of labor provides an exquisite avenue for appropriate rationalization of tasks.
“ Bureaucracy is the means of carrying community action into rationally ordered action (228). Once administration has been completely bureaucratized, its power is unshatterable.” Slide 4.
Bureaucratic division of labor is similar to industrial division of labor in the sense that both sectors divide a single task into numerous smaller tasks, which are then assigned to a single individual to work on depending on his or her experience and specialty. In addition, both ensure there is enhanced productivity and efficiency throughout the production process as division of labor enables more workload to be done within the organization, as well as enhance specialization of persons in a given line of work. The difference in industrial division of labor and bureaucratic division of labor is the motive. In the first case, division takes place to enhance efficiency and productivity. In the latter case, division occurs to enhance transparency and spread work outlay to different people within a bureaucratic society, such as a government.