What is the 7-S Framework?

The 7-S Framework, also known as the McKinsey 7S Framework, describes seven essential factors that influence the effectiveness of an organization. The seven factors are: strategy, structure, systems, skills, staff, style, and shared values. Each of the factors influences the others and must be aligned with them to create a successful organization.

How did the 7-S Framework come about?

The 7-S Frameworkis a management model developed in the early 1980s by employees of the management consulting firm McKinsey. In analyzing various successful companies, seven elements were identified that are essential for the success of a company.

What are the seven core variables of the 7-S Framework?

The seven elements of the 7-S Frameworkcan be divided into hard and soft factors. The hard factors (strategy, structure and systems) are easier to grasp and analyze compared to the soft factors (skills, staff, style and shared values).

  1. Strategy Strategy is the long-term goals and plans of an organization. Choosing and implementing the right strategy influences the success of the company and can give the organization a competitive advantage.

  2. Structure The term "structure" refers to the hierarchical structure within an organization. The structure of an organization defines the responsibilities.

  3. Systems Systems are used to coordinate the workflows and processes within the organization. An optimal process design ensures, for example, a reduction in the resources used and costs incurred.

  4. Skills The skills are the abilities and competencies of the employees. Each employee has certain skills that are used for the benefit of the company and its success.

  5. Staff Staff are the employees of the organization. Motivated and qualified staff can have a significant positive impact on the success of the company.

  6. Style Style refers to the corporate culture and corporate style. The style or leadership style is the way in which actions are taken with employees and decisions are made and communicated.

  7. Shared Values The shared values define the organisations key beliefs that form the core of its corporate culture.

You will find further explanations of terms in our glossary