Difference Between Line Organization And Functional Organization

10 Differences Between Line and Functional Organization [Explained]

Difference Between Line Organization and Functional Organization

Line organization means the direct flow of authority from the top level to lower-level management whereas the functional organization of various activities is divided into different departments based on specialization.

The major difference between line organization and functional organization are as follows:

Basics of
Line OrganizationFunctional Organization
MeaningIn the line organization, only top-level management has
the sole authority to take any decision,
as such, it is possible to take a quicker
A functional organization is a structure where all
activities of an organization divided into
various functions and each function is entrusted
to a functional specialist.
NatureLine organization is a simple type
of an organization where there is a clear line
of authority from top to bottom level.
A functional organization is comparatively complex
type of organization and there is a lack of
a clear line of authority.
Unity of
In a line organization each subordinate
has only one superior to command
In a functional organization every subordinate
has several superiors to command him.
AuthorityHere is a centralized authority and
subordinate levels have no authority
to make a decision.
Here is a decentralized authority and
functional specialists have the authority to make
a decision of their own department.
Only line authority is involved
in management, hence it is
more economic.
Functional specialists are in every
the department, hence it is a costly type
of organization.
It is essential to gather suggestions and
information from functional specialists, as
such, it is not possible to take a quicker
In a line organization, the main
executives are overburdened.
They have to involve in both
executives and operational
There is no provision
of functional specialist
for specific work.
Every specific work of every department
is entrusted on a functional
of work
In a line organization, the main
executives are over-burdened.
They have to involve in both
executives and operational
In a functional organization, works are
divided among functional specialists, hence
the workload on top-level management is
This organizational structure is suitable for
large-scale organizations.
It is easy to maintain coordination
among all the members involved in
the organization.
It is difficult to maintain coordination
as every functional specialist performs
functions independently.
SuitabilityThis organization is only suitable
for small and medium scale
This organizational structure is suitable for
large scale organizations.
Line and Functional Organization Differences

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