ERIC Number: ED216409
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-May
Reference Count: 0
A Comparative Analysis of Organizations' Communication Structure: Organizational Technology and Outcomes as Determinants of Internal Communication.
James, Anita C.; DeWine, Sue
C. Perrow's research has suggested that analyzing organizations according to technology (or process) and raw material (or outcome) can provide valuable information about organizational communication behaviors and patterns. His scheme for classifying organizations suggests a continuum that places organizations with "variable" technologies (unanalyzable with unstable outcomes) at one extreme, "comparable" organizations (average variability and stability) in the center, and "routine" organizations (analyzable technology and uniform outcomes) at the other extreme of the continuum. To determine the validity of this system of classification, the International Communication Association's Communication Audit was administered to three organizations representing the three types on the continuum. The audit elicited information from employees of the three organizations concerning (1) information received, (2) information sent, (3) follow up activities, (4) sources of information, (5) timeliness of information, (6) communication relationships, (7) organizational outcomes, and (8) channels of information. The results showed significant differences between the two organizations at either end of the continuum, lending support to the contention that organizational structure and outcome have an impact on internal communication processes and indicating the value of Perrow's scheme in analyzing communication data from technologically diverse organizations. (FL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Communication Association (32nd, Boston, MA, May 2-5, 1982).