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In 1971, Starbucks was founded on a love for coffee and 42 years later you can still go in and expect the same delicious cup of steaming hot coffee from your local store, served to you from a friendly face. Starbucks mission is “to inspire and nurture the human spirit – one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time. Today, with more than 18,000 stores in 62 countries, Starbucks is the premier roaster and retailer of specialty coffee in the world. And with every cup, we strive to bring both our heritage and an exceptional experience to life.” They offer the best roasted coffee, handcrafted beverages; coffee experience products, excellence service and innovation, plus they are dedicated to produce a great coffee experience to customers. (Starbucks, 2011)

The purpose of this paper is to discuss and analyze Starbucks’ organizational structure and the best form of organizational structure that best fits Starbucks with an emphasis on Job description and Job Specification for a Starbucks employee. I will also try to determine the form of departmentalization that should be used, as well as whether centralization or decentralization of power should be used in light of the recent financial struggles they’ve had. Lastly, I will attempt to determine which organizational configuration best fits Starbucks. Job description is defined as “a formal lists of tasks and duties” and Job specification is defined as “a list of eligibility requirements or qualifications needed to perform a job” (Reilly, Minnick & Baack. 2011). These definitions will be used in creating a position for a new employee.

Job Description: If you love coffee and helping people than you just might be perfect for this job! At Starbucks, we strive to provide a much needed service in today’s busy world. At Starbucks you can learn all about different coffee beans from all over the world and help in developing a great working team. You will be trained in what it means to thoroughly enjoy your job, the people you work with in a clean and safe environment and to enjoy working with the best coffee you can imagine.

Job Specification:
Develop a working knowledge of all products we offer.
Maintain a clean and friendly store.
Maintain a professional attitude and your composure should the store become busier than usual.
Anticipates customer and store needs. Be Flexible with shifts and days that you can work.
Starbucks should be using is departmentalization by geographic region. Starbuck locations are all over the United States. Starbucks uses a matrix configuration by combining divisional and functional structures. Divisional structure is used in multi-product or multi-market operations. Starbucks fall into this structure by having so many different beverages and items on the menu. When putting out so many different items one has to specialize in those items. Starbucks trains their employees to know every item inside and out. You cannot have one person who can make one drink and nit another. They use functional structure to stay organized activities such as coordination, supervision and task allocation. With 18,000 stores it takes many teams to stay updated of everything that is going on in the market. Starbucks hires people who specialize in marketing strategy to keep them on top of the market.

The form should be changed in the stores that serve lunch because the structure of the work changes. It becomes more of a machine bureaucracy in that it is highly routine in making drinks as well as sandwiches and salads. When you have to repeat something many times you are working like a machine. Starbucks has decentralized authority because they created decision-making for each manager. There are also lots of stores around the world and each store has different from the authority, managers, and customers. This also allows for employees to be able to give their thoughts, opinions, and ideas. If the company uses their ideas they are rewarded. It also allows for the lines of communication to stay open between employees and managers which allows for a friendly working environment.

Starbucks is making sure that it is here to stay. By surrounding itself and its team members with the best training and communication they stand out against all competitors. Yes, other will try to stand up against the designer coffee label but when it comes down to it Starbucks is finding new ways to stay at the top. With being in different regions they have created an evening atmosphere where you can drop in after work, with friends, after yoga, by yourself, after a long day or after a great day. The food is amazing. The wine selection is simple and smart. Starbucks will change the structure of the business as many times as it takes to make it work for them. You never know they may create things that work for them that do not work for other coffee shops.


Reilly, M., Minnick, C., & Baack, D. (2011). The five functions of effective management. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc. https://starbucks.com

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