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Sonic Healthcare and Organisational Theories Assessment 1 Answer

Assignment 1: approx. 1000 words (20%)

Companies that view hierarchy as the only way to map and structure formal relationships—or, indeed, the only way to get things done—are finding the current environment paralyzing. (McKinsey Quarterly, May 2020) – talking about the current pandemic.

Please select a health organisation of your choice and briefly describe its organisational structure - also include the type and size of the organisation.

Select a major problem that the organisation was facing BEFORE the pandemic. Explain what intervention could have been or would be relevant to the situation and why and justify your answer (you may talk about group or team function, governing problems, etc.) – use any relevant information covered in the first 5 modules, or be brave and add something ´new and interesting´ but closely connected.

What system model or organisational theory was or would be most appropriate to the organisation and why?

Briefly outline how the impact of the pandemic has affected that situation – problem, intervention, model/theory.

Use relevant supporting literature to assist your arguments – use proper referencing style – 5-10 references.

Remember that you have only 1000 words so get to the point quickly. No need to describe the history of the organisation or go into details. Also, no need for an intro to the assignment. For privacy reasons, it is better not to name the organisation.

If you are currently NOT working for an organisation, your job is to find an organisation on the internet and explore the same issues – a problem the organisation faced before the pandemic, what system model or organisational theory would be most appropriate and why, and how COVID-19 has changed the situation.

The marking criteria for this assignment are:

Marking criteria:

 Paper Structure (30%)

 Organisation: Structure is important to present information effectively and to express arguments in a logical and systematic way. Was the paper well organised in a manner consistent with academic/consultancy paper writing?  Did the paper conform to the word limit?  (10%) 

 Expression: Higher written communication skills include an ability to write in a clear style, with appropriate grammatical structure and vocabulary, correct spelling and punctuation, and well-structured sentences. Was the written expression of an acceptable standard?  (10%)

 Citations and List of References: Whenever you quote, or use an idea or data from a source, you must indicate its origin. Did the paper include an adequate list of references with properly cited sources?  (10%) 

 Paper Content (70%)

 Sources: Were sources used to strengthen the argument where required? Was background reading and knowledge of the relevant theories evident in the paper?  (20%)

 Descriptive Content: Descriptive content provides the reader with the understanding of the situation. Were the descriptive aspects of the topic dealt with sufficiently?  (20%)  

 Analytical Content: To rise above the basic level, a paper needs sound analytical content and a logical flow. Was this evident in the paper? Was there sufficient evidence of application of the concepts and theories of this unit? (30%)  

Total: 20/100


Sonic healthcare and Organisational theories


The forthcoming report is entirely based on the influence of the structural formation of an organisation that can help the authorities of that company to mitigate some major challenges that influence its business growth in the highly competitive market. Therefore, Sonic Healthcare is taken into account for analysing the issue that was faced by the company before the impact of Covid-19. Apart from that, some interventions along with organisational theories that could be helpful or help the company to mitigate such challenges are discussed briefly in the forthcoming discussion.

The organisational structure of Sonic Healthcare including its type and size

Sonic Healthcare is one of the renowned healthcare companies’ group as it is a parent company of various subsidiaries around the world (Sonic Healthcare, 2020a). The headquarter of this organisation is located in Sydney, Australia. After the establishment in 1987 Sonic Healthcare achieved growth significantly and become the third-largest medicine company around the globe (Sonic Healthcare, 2020b). Under the supervision of its CEO and leaders, Sonic Healthcare aimed to provide good quality services to its vendors to achieve growth in the business. However, it is also found that Sonic Healthcare is the largest diagnostic companies around the world. This organisation is divided into three parts pathology, radiology and clinical services. Sonic Healthcare has 900 pathology specialists. Alongside this, the organisation has 36000 people (Sonic Healthcare, 2020b). According to the statistics, the organisation provides excellent and high-quality Services to 100million people annually (Sonic Healthcare, 2020b).

 Organisational structure of Sonic Healthcare

Figure 1: Organisational structure of Sonic Healthcare 

Source: (The official board, 2020)

The size of the company is very big as it is the parent company of multiple subsidiaries which spread their arms into so many regions across the world. According to the quarterly report of McKinsey, the organisations which follows the hierarchical structure and manage the formal relationship to its stakeholders can easily mitigate crucial challenges that can hamper the organisational growth of that firm. Sonic Healthcare also follows the hierarchical structure in which the Board members includes the CEO, Directors, chairman. Apart from that, in the second row of this structure CFO, ED and secretary is included (The official board, 2020). Therefore, it can be argued that Sonic Healthcare is capable to address such a typical situation that can negatively impact on the business growth of the company by formulating excellent strategies.

The major challenge faced by Sonic Healthcare before Covid-19

Sonic Healthcare has a hierarchical structure although it suffered from crucial issues in the field of Human Resource management. Before the impact of coronavirus, the high management authorities of Sonic Healthcare are concerned about its HRM as the reviews delivered by its employees are not positive for the business growth of the company. According to the reviews of employees, they did not want to recommend this company to anyone else as there is no chance is provided to the employees regarding career growth (Indeed, 2020). Apart from that, another employee of the company revealed that the trainers of that organisation have refused to train that employee. Also, the vice-president of Sonic Healthcare did not help him (Indeed, 2020). According to this discussion, it can be argued that HR department professionals are not good enough in providing training to employees as well as there is no chance is given concerning career growth. Within an organisation career growth, opportunities and employee’s engagement need to be focused by the authorities of that company (Sumathi, 2017). In regards to this, the higher authorities of the company need to pay attention to the needs and requirements of employees.

In the view of scholars, an individual can deliver optimum performance regarding a specific job although, the decision making, planning, organising of tasks crucially depends on the engagement of team members (Forsyth, 2006). Therefore, an organisation needs to focus on Team Building intervention to mitigate some HRM-related challenges. Also, three management approaches including managing, leading and coaching of the team can increase and enhance the effectiveness of the team (Staniforth& West, 1995). Henceforth, by developing excellent team an organisation can address its HRM issues. Sonic Healthcare should utilise the Team Building intervention to address the issue of employee’s demotivation and turnover. Team building could be very beneficial for the company to comply with its employees with law and legislation of Sonic Healthcare. Moreover, by developing a team with highly skilled and diverse employees Sonic Healthcare could be able to mitigate the issues of HRM as employees will easily adopt changes within the organisation.

Application of McGregor Theory X and Theory Y

According to some authors, managers should not focus on housekeeping issue but need to focus on employee’s motivation level to assist the firm to achieve growth (Daft,2006). As per the crucial situation faced by Sonic Healthcare, it can be argued that the authorities should utilise the aspects of McGregor Theory X and Theory Y to address the issue. According to this theory, managers are two types one of them which complies with theory X and another one with theory Y (Prottas&Nummelin, 2018). 

 Theory X and Theory Y

Figure 2: Theory X and Theory Y

Source: (Iedunote, 2017)

The manager follows the concept of Theory X keep the pessimistic view to its employees whereas, managers follow Theory Y are optimistic. Thus, the managers of Sonic Healthcare could utilise Theory Y to mitigate the prior issue. Theory Y Managers can allow employees to engage in decision making and also empower them to remain self-motivated. Therefore, employees could be responsible and accept the changes that take place within the company.

Impact of Covid-19 on HRD of Sonic Healthcare

Covid-19 entirely devasted the process of Sonic Healthcare in the field of radiology (Scott, 2020). However, the organisation is typically trying to reposition them in the market to sustain its business. The pandemic also disrupts the preliminary issue present within the company as nowadays the entire workforce of the company working collaboratively to serve the affected people of Covid-19 (Sonic health plus, 2020). The coordination level of Sonic Healthcare is also improved as every member of the company is committed to anticipating this challenge by collaboratively worked with each other. Henceforth, the aforementioned discussion is justified that by building a team and organisation can mitigate HRM issues proficiently.

 Transformational leadership

Figure 3: Transformational leadership 

Source: (Cherry, 2020)

However, it can be argued that to prevent the impact of Covid-19 on the business operations of Sonic Healthcare the authorities of the company need to consider Transformational leadership theory to increase the working efficiency of the team. Transformational leadership theory demonstrates that in this leadership style leaders identify the required changes and guide its fellow members to adopt that change proficiently (Wright& Pandey, 2010). By developing committed members Sonic Healthcare can easily mitigate this issue.


As per the above discussion, it can be concluded that Sonic Healthcare critically suffered from HRM issues that hamper the operational efficiency of the company. However, some effective and efficient organisational theories such as McGregor Theory X and Theory Y along with Transformational leadership theory would be very helpful for Sonic Healthcare to address the HRM issues by developing a strong team with diverse members. Henceforth, the organisation should consider these theories to sustain its business growth in the hazardous situation of Covid-19.

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