What Is the Purpose of Bureaucracy?

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Bureaucracy seeks to arrange bureaus and departments in an organized manner for the sake of efficiency. Supporters believe bureaucracy enhances the development of modern civilization, and it is a necessary function within governments.

Bureaucracy is based on a hierarchical structure in which people are given certain tasks to complete. For instance, employees and departments fall under administrative heads that designate duties accordingly, which maintains cohesion within an organization. Bureaucratic rules also govern the pensions and salaries of employees. Bureaucracy is especially important in large organizations to ensure consistency.

Bureaucracy instills discipline and maintains authority in a collective manner. Bureaucracy also plays a vital role in the area of regulation. Regulators prevent negative actions that can lead to drastic consequences.

Bureaucracy has been an important element in history. For example, Confucius instituted bureaucratic principles to promote harmony in such areas as religion and politics. Potential applicants in ancient China were tested to ensure they were qualified for certain government jobs.

Bureaucracy is meant to prevent favoritism and reward people based on merit. In the modern world, managers use bureaucracy to promote employees and train new workers to perform well in the workplace. Bureaucracy is also more efficient in a globalized society where disseminating information in a digital format is necessary to decrease paperwork. Bureaucracy also maintains relationships in an age of globalization.