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By Prof. Davies
 Control, or controlling, is one of the managerial
functions
like planning, organizing, staffing and directing.
It is an important function because it helps to
check the errors and to take the corrective
action so that deviation from standards are
minimized and stated goals of the organization
are achieved in a desired manner.
 According to modern concepts, control is a
foreseeing action whereas earlier concept of
control was used only when errors were
detected. Control in management means setting
standards, measuring actual performance and
taking corrective action.
 1. Setting Performance Standards:
 The first step in the process of controlling is
concerned with setting performance
standards. These standards are the basis for
measuring the actual performance.
 Thus, standards act as a lighthouse that
warns & guides the ships at sea. Standards
are the benchmarks towards which efforts of
entire organisation are directed. These
standards can be expressed both in
quantitative and qualitative terms.
 2. Measurement of Actual Performance:
 Once the standards have been determined,
the next step is to measure the actual
performance. The various techniques for
measuring are sample checking, performance
reports, personal observation etc. However,
in order to facilitate easy comparison, the
performance should be measured on same
basis that the standards have.
 Following are some of the ways for measuring
performance:
 (a) Superior prepares a report regarding the
performance of an employee.
 (b) Various ratios like gross profit ratio, debtor
turnover ratio, return on investment, current ratio
etc. are calculated at periodic intervals to measure
company’s performance.
 (c) Progress made in areas like marketing can be
measured by considering the number of units,
increase in market share etc.
 (d) In small organisations, each unit produced can be
checked personally to ensure the quality standards.
 (e) In large organisation, the technique of sample
checking is used. Under this technique, some pieces
are checked at random for quality specifications.
 3. Comparing Actual Performance with
Standards:
 This step involves comparing the actual
performance with standards laid down in
order to find the deviations. For example,
performance of a salesman in terms of unit
sold in a week can be easily measured
against the standard output for the week.
 4. Analysing Deviations:
 Some deviations are possible in all the
activities. However, the deviation in the
important areas of business needs to be
corrected more urgently as compared to
deviation in insignificant areas. Management
should use critical point control and
management by exception in such areas.
 (a) Critical Point Control:
 Since it is neither easy nor economical to
check each and every activity in an
organisation, the control should focus on Key
Result Areas (KRAs) which act as the critical
points. The KRAs are very essential for the
success of an organisation. Therefore, the
entire organisation has to suffer if anything
goes wrong at these points. For example, in
a manufacturing organisation, an increase of
7% in labour cost is more troublesome than
an 18% increase in stationary expenses.
 (b) Management by Exception:
 Management by exception or control by
exception is an important principle of
management control. According to this
principle, an attempt to control everything
results in controlling nothing. Thus only the
important deviations which exceed the
prescribed limit should be brought to the
notice of management. Thus, if plans provide
for 3% increase in labour cost, deviations
beyond 3% alone should be brought to the
notice of the management.
 5. Taking Corrective Action:
 The last step in the process of controlling
involves taking corrective action. If the
deviations are within acceptable limits, no
corrective measure is required. However, if
the deviations exceed acceptable limits, they
should be immediately brought to the notice
of the management for taking corrective
measures, especially in the important areas.
1. Reflecting Organizational Needs
 All control systems and techniques should
reflect the jobs they are to perform. There
may be several control techniques which
have general applicability such as,
budgeting, costing, etc.
2. Forward Looking
 Control should be forward looking. Though
many of the controls are instantaneous, they
must focus attention as to how future actions
can be conformed with plans.
 3. Promptness in action
 An ideal control system detects deviations
promptly and forms the manager concerned
to take timely actions.
 4. Pointing out Exceptions at Critical
Points
 Control should point exception at critical
points and suggest whether action is to be
taken for deviations or not some deviations
in the organizations have no impact while
others, through very little in quantity, may
have great significance. Thus control system
should provide formation for critical point
control and control on exception.
 5. Objectives
 The control should be objective, definite and
determinable in a clear and positive way. The
standards of measurement should be
quantified as far as possible. If they are not
quantifiable, such as training effectiveness
etc. they must be determinable and
verifiable.
 6. Flexible
 Control should be flexible so that it remains
workable in the case of changed plans,
unforeseen circumstances or outright
failures.
 7. Economical
 Control should be economical and must be
worth its costs. Economy is relative, since
the benefits vary with the importance of the
activity, the size of the operation, the
expense that might be incurred in the
absence of control and the contribution the
control system can make.
 8. Simple
 Control system must be simple and
understandable so that all managers can use
it effectively.
 9. Motivating
 Control system should motivate both
controller and controlled.
 10. Reflecting
 The control system should reflect
organisational pattern by focusing attention
on positions in organisation structure through
which deviations are corrected.
Controlling
Controlling
Controlling

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Controlling

  • 2.  Control, or controlling, is one of the managerial functions like planning, organizing, staffing and directing. It is an important function because it helps to check the errors and to take the corrective action so that deviation from standards are minimized and stated goals of the organization are achieved in a desired manner.  According to modern concepts, control is a foreseeing action whereas earlier concept of control was used only when errors were detected. Control in management means setting standards, measuring actual performance and taking corrective action.
  • 3.  1. Setting Performance Standards:  The first step in the process of controlling is concerned with setting performance standards. These standards are the basis for measuring the actual performance.  Thus, standards act as a lighthouse that warns & guides the ships at sea. Standards are the benchmarks towards which efforts of entire organisation are directed. These standards can be expressed both in quantitative and qualitative terms.
  • 4.  2. Measurement of Actual Performance:  Once the standards have been determined, the next step is to measure the actual performance. The various techniques for measuring are sample checking, performance reports, personal observation etc. However, in order to facilitate easy comparison, the performance should be measured on same basis that the standards have.
  • 5.  Following are some of the ways for measuring performance:  (a) Superior prepares a report regarding the performance of an employee.  (b) Various ratios like gross profit ratio, debtor turnover ratio, return on investment, current ratio etc. are calculated at periodic intervals to measure company’s performance.  (c) Progress made in areas like marketing can be measured by considering the number of units, increase in market share etc.  (d) In small organisations, each unit produced can be checked personally to ensure the quality standards.  (e) In large organisation, the technique of sample checking is used. Under this technique, some pieces are checked at random for quality specifications.
  • 6.  3. Comparing Actual Performance with Standards:  This step involves comparing the actual performance with standards laid down in order to find the deviations. For example, performance of a salesman in terms of unit sold in a week can be easily measured against the standard output for the week.
  • 7.  4. Analysing Deviations:  Some deviations are possible in all the activities. However, the deviation in the important areas of business needs to be corrected more urgently as compared to deviation in insignificant areas. Management should use critical point control and management by exception in such areas.
  • 8.  (a) Critical Point Control:  Since it is neither easy nor economical to check each and every activity in an organisation, the control should focus on Key Result Areas (KRAs) which act as the critical points. The KRAs are very essential for the success of an organisation. Therefore, the entire organisation has to suffer if anything goes wrong at these points. For example, in a manufacturing organisation, an increase of 7% in labour cost is more troublesome than an 18% increase in stationary expenses.
  • 9.  (b) Management by Exception:  Management by exception or control by exception is an important principle of management control. According to this principle, an attempt to control everything results in controlling nothing. Thus only the important deviations which exceed the prescribed limit should be brought to the notice of management. Thus, if plans provide for 3% increase in labour cost, deviations beyond 3% alone should be brought to the notice of the management.
  • 10.  5. Taking Corrective Action:  The last step in the process of controlling involves taking corrective action. If the deviations are within acceptable limits, no corrective measure is required. However, if the deviations exceed acceptable limits, they should be immediately brought to the notice of the management for taking corrective measures, especially in the important areas.
  • 11. 1. Reflecting Organizational Needs  All control systems and techniques should reflect the jobs they are to perform. There may be several control techniques which have general applicability such as, budgeting, costing, etc.
  • 12. 2. Forward Looking  Control should be forward looking. Though many of the controls are instantaneous, they must focus attention as to how future actions can be conformed with plans.
  • 13.  3. Promptness in action  An ideal control system detects deviations promptly and forms the manager concerned to take timely actions.
  • 14.  4. Pointing out Exceptions at Critical Points  Control should point exception at critical points and suggest whether action is to be taken for deviations or not some deviations in the organizations have no impact while others, through very little in quantity, may have great significance. Thus control system should provide formation for critical point control and control on exception.
  • 15.  5. Objectives  The control should be objective, definite and determinable in a clear and positive way. The standards of measurement should be quantified as far as possible. If they are not quantifiable, such as training effectiveness etc. they must be determinable and verifiable.
  • 16.  6. Flexible  Control should be flexible so that it remains workable in the case of changed plans, unforeseen circumstances or outright failures.
  • 17.  7. Economical  Control should be economical and must be worth its costs. Economy is relative, since the benefits vary with the importance of the activity, the size of the operation, the expense that might be incurred in the absence of control and the contribution the control system can make.
  • 18.  8. Simple  Control system must be simple and understandable so that all managers can use it effectively.  9. Motivating  Control system should motivate both controller and controlled.
  • 19.  10. Reflecting  The control system should reflect organisational pattern by focusing attention on positions in organisation structure through which deviations are corrected.