McDonald’s Restaurant Chain’s Organizational Structure

Organizational structure is of extreme importance for the effectiveness and efficiency of operations. Some types of organizations require a rigid hierarchy, while others can be more flexible with the structure. Thus, scholars identify two different types of organizational structures: mechanistic and organic (Hunsaker, 2018). Mechanistic organizational structure is the most common type where employees work separately while receiving orders down from the command chain (Hunsaker, 2018). The organic structure allows more horizontal communication and allows employees from different departments to work together on various tasks. The present paper examines the organizational structure of a McDonald’s restaurant and discusses its classification based on the division of work, organizational structure chart, and organizational design.

The organizational structure of McDonald’s restaurants is vertical to help employees grow in their careers. The organizational chart is provided in Figure 1 below. According to the structure, the head of the restaurant is the restaurant manager who reports to the general manager. The restaurant manager ensures the top quality of service, oversees activities in the kitchen, controls payrolls, schedules and trains personnel, resolves complaints, ensures adequate stock of supplies, and manages the cash register (JD&RE, n.d.). Assistant managers help the restaurant manager fulfill the duties by conducting inventories, educating staff, resolving issues with customers, and consistently demonstrating actions and behaviors that set an example to other employees (Smart Recruiters, n.d.). Shift running managers coordinate people, products, and equipment to ensure a safe, consistent, profitable, and smooth running shift (SCRIBD, n.d.). Floor managers delegate assignments, fill in for absent employees, and ensure customers have a pleasant experience in the establishment (“Restaurant Floor Manager,” 2019). Finally, crew members cook and served the food and clean the restaurant when directed by managers.

MacDonald’s has a performance division design, which is dividing the markets based on their performance. The core principles of the company are responsible leadership, inclusiveness, progressiveness, and local integration (McDonald’s, 2020). The organization works using the principle of freedom within a framework. Therefore, every restaurant is a unique organization with individual rules, traditions, and work division. The principle of freedom within the framework is often translated to the organizational design of every restaurant. While the organizational structure has a transparent vertical design, in the heart of everyday work, all employees communicate informally. Mangers communicate with crew members and among each other regularly to deliver the best service with maximum efficiency.

Considering the discussion presented above, it is difficult to classify McDonald’s restaurants’ organizational structure as either organic or mechanistic. In mechanistic organizations, company-wide decisions are made by designated employees (Hunsaker, 2018). Such organizations have a strict hierarchy, which is present in McDonald’s restaurants. However, in mechanistic organizations, people rarely work together, and written communication prevails, which is not common for McDonald’s. Thus, it seems that the restaurants have an organic organizational structure, as people often share responsibilities and collaborate using oral communication daily. The descriptions of jobs of different classes of managers in McDonald’s restaurants have many similar points, which means that they are often interchangeable, and the structure is only a formality used for payroll purposes. Moreover, managers are often required to change for the missing employees, which implies that managers often do the work of crew members. Such a structure helps McDonald’s restaurants create a family atmosphere in the workplace, where everyone has similar rights and responsibilities. McDonald’s teams are flexible and can work under any circumstances.


Hunsaker, E. (2018). . BizFluent. Web.

JD&RE. (n.d.). McDonalds manager job description. Web.

McDonald’s. (2020). Our values. Web.

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SCRIBD. (n.d.) . Web.

Smart Recruiters. (n.d.). Assistant manager. Web. 

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