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while attending night school to earn a degree in computer engineering stan wilson wo 639061

While attending night school to earn a degree in computer engineering, Stan Wilson worked for Morlot Container Company (MCC) as an assembly line supervisor. MCC was located near Wilson’s hometown and had been a prominent employer in the area for many years. MCC’s main product was milk cartons that were distributed throughout the Midwest for milk processing plants. The technology at MCC was stable, and the assembly lines were monitored closely. MCC employed a standard cost system because cost control was considered important. The employees who manned the assembly lines were generally unskilled workers who had been with the company for many years; the majority of these workers belonged to the local union. Wilson was glad he was nearly finished with school because he found the work at MCC to be repetitive and boring, even as a supervisor. The supervisors were monitored almost as closely as the line workers, and standard policies and procedures existed that applied to most situations. Most of MCC’s management had been with the company for several years and believed in clear lines of authority and well defined responsibilities. Whereas he knew he had performed well against the company’s standards, Wilson also knew that there probably would be little opportunity for advancement or significant compensation increases. After receiving his degree, Wilson went to work in the research and development department of Alden Computers, a 5 year old company specializing in educational computer systems for elementary schools. The company was customer oriented and willing to tailor its computer systems to the needs of the end users. The customization of its systems, combined with continual changes in technology, resulted in a job shop orientation in the company’s production facility. The employees who assembled Alden’s systems were skilled technicians who worked closely with the engineering staff. Wilson was gratified by the respect and authority his newly acquired knowledge and skills afforded him at Alden. If changes were required in his area of expertise, Wilson often made recommendations about how the work should proceed and was involved in decisions on new product development. The company’s management team frequently ‘‘rolled up its sleeves’’ and worked alongside the technicians when production problems arose; the lines of authority were sometimes difficult to distinguish, and decisions were often made by the expert on the spot. Wilson believed that his skills were appreciated at Alden, and he would be fairly compensated for his professional expertise.


a. Morlot Container Company and Alden Computers represent two different types of organizational structures. In terms of each of the following points, explain how MCC differs from Alden Computers.

1. General organizational structure and climate

2. Bases of authority

3. Evaluation criteria

4. Bases of compensation

b. Both structures have potential benefits or can create problems. Discuss the features of the structure used by

1. Alden Computers that might benefit MCC.

2. Alden that might create problems for Alden.

3. MCC that might benefit Alden Computers.a

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