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The structure of a company can be represented in many different ways. Data can either be presented as rows and columns in a Google spreadsheet (or other software), or it can be expressed visually, making it easier to understand the relationships between team members and the overall hierarchy of the company. Organizational charts, as the name suggests, serve exactly this purpose - they visually and clearly display the hierarchy of a company or organization. They can even include other important information about employees, such as their contact details, roles or even a profile photo.
Organization charts are also known under different names such as Org Charts, Organograms, Organogram Charts or Hierarchy Charts.
Needless to say, it is up to each company to decide which structure it chooses. Some lean towards a more traditional type where the hierarchy is clearly defined, others opt for a more modern leadership style and keep their organization flat, where employees are more involved in the decision-making process.
These are the three classical types of an organizational chart:
The hierarchical type is the most traditional form of the organizational chart and probably comes to mind when you think about this topic. It describes a situation where one person or group is at the very top of the hierarchy and the others are below. This hierarchy makes it very clear to whom the person is subordinate and who is under them.
Imagine a team that reports to multiple managers. A hierarchical diagram would be useless in such a case. Matrix - a type of organizational chart that helps create a more flexible work environment - serves exactly that purpose, to enable clearly defined cross-functional teams.
Organizational charts with very little or no levels in most cases describe the flat hierarchy in which employees are more powered to make decisions and come up with innovative ideas.
Organizational charts are an important part of clearly explaining to whom individual team members report and how they fit into the company hierarchy. They can serve multiple purposes, such as resource planning or hiring, and aim to improve internal communication.
Modern development is not about building everything from scratch. The JointJS team equips you with plenty of ready-to-use demo apps that can serve as a boilerplate and radically reduce your development time. Start a free 30-day JointJS+ trial, get the source code of the Organizational Chart application, and go from zero to a fully functional app in no time.