Difference Between Supervisor vs. Manager

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Main Difference

Due to many similarities in the roles of supervisors and managers, people find it quite difficult to differentiate it between the supervisor and the manager. At the same time, people are often up with the question that whom out of them have more authority and have the power to hire or fire the employees. A supervisor is the team head, which makes him above the regular employees. The main task supervisor has to perform is the overseeing the team under his observance and the completion of tasks and assignments with keeping in view the time limit. The supervisor is assigned to the lower level management as he has a team of employees working under. On the other hand, the manager holds the middle or the upper-level management and has the hands on all the available resources of the organization. A manager looks out the whole unit including the supervisor; he has authority to hire or fire any employee.

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Comparison Chart

SupervisorManager
Management
The supervisor is assigned with lower level management.The manager is assigned to the middle or top level management.
Key RoleThe supervisor works along with his team and subordinates, and oversees them.The manager himself doesn’t get to work; he is associated with qualities of planning, leading, organizing and motivating.
AuthorityManager overpowers the supervisor.As the supervisor is the team head and the manager is the head of the entire unit.
Hiring or Firing EmployeeThe supervisor can recommend manager for the hiring or firing purpose.The manager has complete right to hire, fire or promote.
Answerable toThe supervisor is answerable to the manager for the performance of his team.The manager is answerable to the board of directors for the performance of the entire unit.
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What is Supervisor?

The supervisor is assigned with the lower-level management as he has a complete team working under him. He is allowed to make different decisions regarding the work management, output, duty timing and others. Although, the final call in this regard is dependent on the managers’ decision. The supervisor works along with his team and subordinates, and oversees them. The supervisor deeply knows about every of the employee and knows how to take work from them. Other than supervising and working along with the subordinates, the supervisor motivates his team to do well. In a company or an organization there can be multiple supervisors, who are answerable to the manager and other higher authorities on behalf of the entire team. A supervisor has the authority to make different variations to get the work done within the stipulated time without any convenience. If the team performs well, the supervisor is the one to be most credited with. The supervisor is up with superb skills, inspiring and amiable attitude toward his workmen, at the same time he very well knows to make the employees in his team more productive.

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What is Manager?

The manager is assigned to the middle or higher level management. The manager has multiple supervisors working under him or in other words we can say that he is the in charge of the entire unit that consists of multiple supervisors and their teams. The manager has hands on all the available resources of the company or organization. i.e. men, money, material, method and machinery. The manager has authority to introduce different methods to increase productivity or to increase the office timing. For any of the big decisions, the manager gets board of directors in confidence, although for smaller decisions like time-management, uses of resources, and hiring, the manager is fully independent to make decisions. Regarding authority, manager overpowers the supervisors as the supervisor is the team head and the manager is the head of the entire unit. The manager himself doesn’t get to work; he is associated with qualities of planning, leading, organizing and motivating.

Key Differences

  1. The supervisor is assigned with lower level management, whereas the manager is assigned to the middle or top level management.
  2. The supervisor works along with his team and subordinates, and oversees them, while the manager himself doesn’t get to work; he is associated with qualities of planning, leading, organizing and motivating.
  3. In terms of authority, manager overpowers the supervisor as the supervisor is the team head and the manager is the head of the entire unit.
  4. The supervisor can recommend manager for the hiring or firing purpose, whereas the manager has complete right to hire, fire or promote.
  5. The supervisor is answerable to the manager for the performance of his team, whereas the manager is answerable to the board of directors for the performance of the entire unit.