From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
A working group, or working party, is a group of experts working together to achieve specified goals. The groups are domain-specific and focus on discussion or activity around a specific subject area. The term can sometimes refer to an interdisciplinary collaboration of researchers working on new activities that would be difficult to sustain under traditional funding mechanisms (e.g., federal agencies).
The lifespan of a working group can last anywhere between a few months and several years. Such groups have the tendency to develop a quasi-permanent existence when the assigned task is accomplished; hence the need to disband (or phase out) the working group when it has achieved its goal(s).
A working group's performance is made up of the individual results of all its individual members. A team's performance is made up of both individual results and collective results. In large organisations, working groups are prevalent, and the focus is always on individual goals, performance and accountabilities. Working group members do not take responsibility for results other than their own. On the other hand, teams require both individual and mutual accountability. There is more information sharing, more group discussions and debates to arrive at a group decision.
Examples of common goals for working groups include:
- creation of an informational document
- creation of a standard
- resolution of problems related to a system or network
- continuous improvement
Working groups are also referred to as task groups, workgroups, or technical advisory groups.