Freedman, who walked out on the Eagles to become Bolton manager five years ago, has been given a wide-ranging brief by chairman Steve Parish.
The club legend knows Palace inside out and Parish believes he can play a key role supporting their new Dutch coach. Parish said: “This is a position I have been looking to fill for a while — someone to work with the manager, myself and head of recruitment Tim Coe on all the footballing aspects of the club.
“I'm delighted that Dougie has agreed to accept the position and look forward to continuing Crystal Palace's progression to become a solid Premier League club with the right infrastructure."
Freedman, 43, out of work since he was sacked by Bolton in 2014, has maintained close links at Selhurst Park.