Organization as a System

A system, in the simplest form, can be defined as a set of different components that work together to achieve a common objective. Typically, a system will be organized to ensure there are inputs and processes to convert such inputs into outputs. Similarly, an organization is an institution comprising of departments, divisions, and units that work together to achieve the organization’s goals and objectives. These departments and units are set up as per their functions, such as accounting, marketing, production, and management. The focus of this essay is to discuss how different departments in an organization contribute to processing the inputs into outputs that are useful and competitive in the market.

            Input is the first component of any system. For any organization to achieve its goals, it must have inputs in terms of raw materials, money, technology, and people (Zerfass, & Volk, 2018). The organization’s departments have to come into play in providing these essential inputs. The procurement department, in partnership with the production department, will be responsible for sourcing raw materials. Accounting and finance departments will ensure there is enough working capital to purchase such materials, while the human resource department will ensure a competent workforce is available. It can be seen that these departments act as subsystems to the organization and there has to exist interrelationship and interdependence among these subsystems for the organization to function.


            Another interrelationship of these subsystems is at the processing level. Wilensky (2015) argued that all organizations are in the business of either creating a new product or adding value to an existing product. In either case, there must be a process involved. The quality of the service or the product that an organization provides largely depends on the quality of its processes. At this level, the production department has to work closely with the research and development department to ensure there is continuous improvement to the production process. This is important if the organization is to remain relevant and competitive to the market. Again, there is a high interdependence between departments in this level of production.

            A system cannot be complete without the output. This is the outcome of all the activities and processes in an organization and any other system. This outcome will be in the form of a service or product. Marketing and sales departments are the key subsystems at this level. A product or service is only of value to the organization if it is accepted by the consumers and the environment at large. An organization that has excelled in business is the one that can meet the needs of its customers while remaining friendly to the surrounding environment. An organization will use the feedback from its customers, employees, and any other stakeholder to improve on its service delivery (Ahmady, Mehrpour, & Nikooravesh, 2016). All these parties play an important role in the organization and its functions. 

            In conclusion, an organization is a system that has several units that collectively work together to achieve the organization’s goals. As discussed, all the subsystems are equally important and the organization needs every one of them to be complete. Therefore, an organization is a system with subsystems such as departments, divisions, and units that are highly interrelated and interdependent in all the functions of an organization.

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Ahmady, G. A., Mehrpour, M., & Nikooravesh, A. (2016). Organizational structure. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences230, 455-462.

Wilensky, H. L. (2015). Organizational intelligence: Knowledge and policy in government and industry (Vol. 19). Quid Pro Books.

Zerfass, A., & Volk, S. C. (2018). How communication departments contribute to corporate success. Journal of Communication Management.