Cross functional team can be defined as a team where people from different domains or functions form or join a team to achieve a common outcome or solving a problem. Cross functional team is better for an organization as employees with different set of knowledge, skills and capabilities become a part of the team and hence problem solving becomes easier.
For e.g.- A team can consist of professional from marketing, finance, operation and human resources when the organisation is looking for a greenfield operation in a particular location.
Advantages of cross functional team
• A cross functional team helps to leverage the knowledge of various professional fields to arrive at a common solution
• It helps to breakdown complex task which otherwise can be cumbersome and time taking
• It helps in pooling of resources and sharing of technical knowhow so that the objective is achieved
• It helps to leverage the knowledge of the professionals so as to impart the knowledge to newcomers and the people working on a project
• It helps to create a knowledge sharing platform which can also lead to knowledge management
Disadvantages of cross functional team
• Presence of a large no professional from various domain can lead to friction between the team members and hence decrease productivity
• Many a times the presence of a large no of team members hampers sharing of resources which can hamper the functioning of the team.
• A large no professional in the team can have ego issues and hence it can be difficult to arrive at common solution
• Many a times in a cross functional team a person can have dual reporting one to the project head and one to his respective domain manager which can lead to confusion among the employees.
Cross functional team in respect to Organisational Structure
In relation to organisational structure cross functional team can be found in matrix type structure where people are expected to report to both domain head and project leader. In the modern world with the advent of internet we have seen professional across various geographies converging and coming together to achieve a common goal.