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Requisite Organisation and Levels of Work: A Real Life Example

Updated on February 5, 2013

I have written a couple of hubs about requisite organisation and how this can assist managers within a leadership framework to increase staff accountability, authority and performance. In this hub I will demonstrate how I used the framework with my General Manager and an external consultant to fix my sales structure to enable to the teams to focus on the member through combining servant leadership with requisite organisation.

In 2011 Sales and Marketing conducted a review of the departments sales distribution structure and found it was almost requisite, but that a few areas that had roles reporting to roles within the same level of work and this is the story of how it was corrected.

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Retail Distribution and LoW

During the initial scans of the organisation in 2008 only one department within the organisation was found to have a requisite structure. This was the Retail Distribution sales force that is located within the Sales & Marketing Department of the Group. Being a sales division there was a strong natural requisite structure with front line sales people and supervisors within Level 1, transactional Regional and Contact Centre Managers at Level 2 and a single Senior Manager at Level 3 with a single Level 4 General Manager.

During 2011 the General Manager and the Senior Manager invited the external consultant to review the structure of the business to ensure that it remained requisite. The scan showed that while the division remained mostly requisite that three positions had become non-requisite since the original work in 2008. These positions were the role of Senior Sales & Service Consultant, Retail Contact Centre Operations Co-ordinator and Retail Operations Manager.

Since the initial scan the Retail team had embraced the concept of Servant Leadership. This philosophy enables the team to focus on the firm’s mission, vision and strategic intent of the organisation which is to serve the member and to deliver exceptional products and services. This philosophy complements the vision and mission by putting the member first, the staff member second and profit/shareholders third. This was always at top of mind when reviewing the structure and LoW of each role throughout the process.

Senior Sales Consultant

The first area that was realigned was the role of Senior. This was a legacy position where each team required an ‘administrator’ to manage the manual paperwork and associated activity for the shop or contact centre team. This role over the past few years had become largely redundant due to changes in technology and processes. The scan reviewed that this position was confusing to staff as the Senior was seen as the first line of supervision, however it had no accountability or authority. Further, the position did not add value to the role of serving the member as it was back office activity. On this basis the position has ceased with all incumbents changing their title to Retail Sales Consultant and serving the member. All ACC=AUTH for frontline supervision now resides with the Sales Team Manager for each team. Further the Level 1 structure has now moved from a Low 1 (Retail Sales Consultant), Mid 1 (Senior) & High 1 (Manager) to a Low 1 (retail Sales Consultant) and High 1 (Sales Team Manager) in each frontline team.

Contact Centre Operations Manager

The second area that was reviewed was the role of Retail Contact Centre Operations Co-ordinator. The role was deemed as a High 1 position and reported directly to the RCC Manager Level 2 position. This was a newly created role to help the Level 2 Manager to work on the business with the Level1 Co-ordinator dealing with the Team Managers and people issues. Prior to the scan the Co-ordinator was becoming frustrated with the role due to having a significant amount of accountability but no authority as this resided with the Level 2 Manager. Requisite Organisation teaches us that the Level 2 Manager has the responsibility for Level 1 Supervisors and we moved quickly to correct this. As a result we took the opportunity to restructure the Retail Contact Centre to focus on serving the member and to ensure that Contact Centre activity resides within the area to enable requisite outcomes. The changes were:

  • Ceasing the contract on the RCC Operations Co-ordinator and calling a new position ‘Web & Outbound Manager’ that has TIRR authority for Team Manager development. This is a high Level 1 position. It also enabled all contact centre activity (web & outbound with inbound) to be managed by the same functional area.
  • All 6 Team Leaders became Team Managers and report directly to the Level 2 Manager
  • Development of an Administration & Compliance team within the RCC with a High Level 1 Manager
  • Removal of a Help Desk team from the RCC into the Operations Team for department wide support, not just RCC support.

This change has meant that the RCC is now entirely focussed on the member and achieving their sales results while being requisite.

Retail Operations Manager and Team

The final change was within the Retail Operations Team. In the past the team were responsible for a mixture of department wide support and product silos. With the restructure occurring in the RCC there was an opportunity to also restructure this team and to create a high potential vacancy for talent pool management.

The first activity that came out of the scan was the LoW for the incumbent in the Retail Operations Manager position. This individual is a solid Level 2 who had a preference for Retail sales activity. The scan revealed that the person would be better suited to an on the road role rather than a cross functional activity that this area was moving towards. As a result the person was transferred into a Level 2 Regional Retail Manager position. This created a vacancy where the Management team could deploy a high capability individual who was at the Level 2/3 hinge for future talent pool development. This is an important change for a team that while being requisite did lack potential Level 3 leaders for the organisation at this stage, but does have a pipeline of potential Level 3 Managers in 3-5 years time.

Another factor in this restructure was moving all silo activity from this team so that they would only work on cross functional activity. In part this was in preparation for the deployment of a new IT system for Group. Activity in Web and Shop Buying were moved out of the team with activity in Product Training and Help Desk now complimenting Business Improvement, Reporting and Sales Training within the Retail Operations Team. So, not only is the structure requisite, but so is their activity as a team.

Final Thoughts

What this demonstrates is that while a division can be naturally requisite there is a need from time to time to review this structure, question some of the roles and to remind oneself of the primary intent of the organisation. For this team it is to serve the member within a requisite structure.


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