Tier Structure – Definition

Cite this article as:"Tier Structure – Definition," in The Business Professor, updated May 6, 2019, last accessed August 7, 2020, https://thebusinessprofessor.com/lesson/tier-structure-definition/.


Tier Structure Definition

Literarily, tier refers to a series of rows or layers, a level or grade in the hierarchy of an organization or system. A tier structure describes a system with distinct levels or layers, this term can be used in diverse industries, for many projects or developments. In the arrangement of a tier system, one level must be completed or accomplished before another commences. That is during the phase of a project or any development, each level must be undertaken separately from the other.

A Little More on What is a Tier Structure

The three-tier system is the most common tier structure, this is a system with three distinct levels which are independent of one another. These three levels may refer to the multitier architecture as seen in a computing system which contains the presentation tier, domain logic tier and data storage tier. Three-tier system can also be seen in distribution of goods which involves the producer, retailers and distributors. An educational system involving the primary, middle and high school is also an instance of three-tier system.

Multitier architecture can occur in software engineering, in this type of system, the data presentation, application processing and data management are all operated independent of one another. Through the separation of these three distinct levels, developers are able to create flexible applications with specific modifications that users can use over again. A three-tier architecture has three levels which are the presentation tier, domain logic tier and data storage tier.

A three-tier system of alcohol distribution include the importers or producers, the distributors and the retailers. These three tiers have a thing in common which is alcohol distribution. The producer sells to the distributors who resells to retailers before it is finally sold to the consumer. In the United States, the three-tier system of alcohol distribution was set up after the repeal of prohibition. With the structure of this system, only retailers can sell to consumers.

The three-tier system also occurs in the education sector where we have the primary level school which is the first school, the middle school and the high school. These three tiers are three distinct school types that operate separately and independently. It is compulsory that children begin their education in the first school which is the primary school and they cannot move to the second tier without completing the first. Also, each tier of education has an age requirement which is decided by the local authority.

References for Tier Structure

Academic Research on Tier Structure

Ownership, two-tier board structure, and the informativeness of earnings–Evidence from China, Firth, M., Fung, P. M., & Rui, O. M. (2007). Journal of accounting and public policy, 26(4), 463-496.

A Two–Tier Wage Structure in a Nonunion Firm, McFarlin, D. B., & Frone, M. R. (1990). Industrial Relations: A Journal of Economy and Society, 29(1), 145-154.

A politically feasible social security reform with a two-tier structure, Yamada, T. (2011). Journal of the Japanese and international economies, 25(3), 199-224.

Clustering data streams on the two-tier structure, Wang, Z., Wang, B., Zhou, C., & Xu, X. (2004, April). In Asia-Pacific Web Conference (pp. 416-425). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.

B/S 3-tier system structure mode [J], Zhi-gang, L. S. J. L. (2002). Journal of Hebei Institute of Technology S, 1.

Research on Software Design Based on B/S 3-Tier Structure [J], Hong-weia, Z. H. A. O., & Chang-mingb, Q. I. N. (2011). Research and Exploration in Laboratory, 7, 020.

Design and Implementation of Online Contributions Management System Based on Three-tier Structure of. net Technology [J], Yu-honga, L. I. U., & Qib, Z. H. A. O. (2008). Journal of Nanchang University (Natural Science), 6, 020.

Employee perceptions of the effects of a two-tier wage structure, Heetderks, T. D., & Martin, J. E. (1991). Journal of Labor Research, 12(3), 279-295.

Research of Integration Platform Facing to Three-tier Structure Information System [J], Ming, W., Feng, H., & Hui, W. (2011). Microcomputer Applications, 27(3), 23-26.

Random assignments on preference domains with a tier structure, Liu, P., & Zeng, H. (2017).

The design of the multi-tier structure warehouse management information system under the B/S mode, Hang, S. U., & Sheng-chuo, Z. E. N. G. (2009). Logistics Engineering and Management, 3, 016.


Was this article helpful?