Restructuring is ‘top priority’ for 9 in 10 companies

Team working together
By Isabelle Bell, CA Today

15 March 2016

Over 90% of business leaders say that restructuring their organisation is their biggest priority this year – and team-based structures are on the rise, according to new research by Deloitte.

Organisational design was rated as the top trend in Deloitte’s Global Human Capital Trends 2016 survey by 92% of executives, with many companies moving towards flatter, cross-functional team structures over traditional hierarchies.

Almost half (49%) of UK respondents said they have recently completed a restructure, while 42% are planning to or are currently undertaking the process. Just 7% had no plans to restructure, the research said.

Deloitte said that companies are increasingly shifting their structures from functional models to interconnected teams, as they strive to become more ‘agile’ and customer-focused.

Anne-Marie Malley, UK human capital leader at Deloitte, said: “Executives in this year’s survey see a need to redesign the organisation itself. UK organisations are reinventing their internal models to innovate, compete and thrive, but many issues still remain in these areas for the foreseeable future.”

What is a team-based organisational structure?

The ‘network of teams’ model organises people into cross-functional, flexible teams to work on specific business projects and challenges, with a central operations and information centre – similar to military command centres.

Businesses following this model are more like “Hollywood movie production teams and less like traditional corporations”, Deloitte says, as people come together to tackle projects then disband and move on to new assignments once the project is complete.

The top 10 global human capital trends in 2016

  1. Organisational design
  2. Leadership
  3. Culture
  4. Engagement
  5. Learning
  6. Design thinking
  7. Changing the skills of the HR organisation
  8. People analytics
  9. Digital HR
  10. Workforce management

Source: Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends 2016

Other key findings in the Deloitte research include:

Employee engagement

A lack of employee engagement is an issue currently facing 80% of UK HR and business leaders, yet  76% of UK organisations still measure employee engagement only once a year.


Over half of those surveyed said they had “weak” leadership programmes for milennials, and 59% said they companies are not ready to meet their leadership needs and succession plans.

Corporate culture

87% per cent of UK respondents rate tackling challenges with corporate culture as an “important” or “very important” priority. However, almost two-thirds of executives do not feel they are effectively driving the desired culture within their organisations.

Ms Malley said that traditional leadership structures are not producing or developing leaders fast enough in today’s companies.

She added: “Companies need to accelerate leadership development, particularly for millennials. This generation make up more than half the workforce right now, and in less than 10 years, they will make up three quarters.

“The development of technology, the varying expectations and working styles of different generational groups, and the need to cater to the employee in an increasingly competitive labour market, are all dramatically transforming the traditional world of work.”

Source: Deloitte

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