Formal organization has its own specific function or functions. A university for example has the main function of promoting education. But it also promotes artistic, literary, athletic and other interests of the members.The principal function of the church is religion but it also promotes charitable, ethical, athelitic, recreational, educational and other activities. Thus the formal organization may have its latent as well as manifest functions.
The formal organization has its own norms or rules of social behavior.Certain conduct are appropriate in certain organization. Formal organization lays down procedure to be followed by the members.
Members of an organization have different statuses. Statuses imply division of labor. The division of labor is characterized of all organizations and in a sense, organization is synonymous with the division of labour.Organized actions in a formal organization are possible because of division of labor. It contributes to the efficiency of the organization. Division of labor leads to specialization.
The formal organization creates authority. Where there is no organization there is no authority where there is no authority there is no organization. Authority is one of the most significant criterions of organization.
Bureaucracy refers to the administrative aspect of the formal organization. It refers to the arrangement of the organization designed to carry out its day to day business. It is represented by a hierarchy of officials who are assigned different responsibilities and provided with different statuses and roles.
The formal organization is based on rationality. The rationality of formal organizations has two sources- the predominance of rules that have been devised to help achieve definite results and the systematic reliance on knowledge in the operation of the organization. The formal organizations are relatively permanent. Some organizations last for longer time while others perish within a short period of time.