Key Differences Between Managerial & Nonmanagerial Employees

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An organization consists of various employees who all perform specific job functions. These employees are categorized by their duties and their status. Employee status is loosely broken down into two categories – managerial and non-managerial employees. The two statuses have different responsibilities, job perks and salary levels.

What are Managerial Employees?

In larger organizations, management is often broken down into three levels – upper management, middle management and first-line management. Upper management includes top executives who are highest on the management hierarchy. Middle management includes department managers and division managers, who are the communication link between upper and lower management. Lower management includes first-line managers and supervisors, who are on the bottom of the management hierarchy.

In smaller organizations, there is often only one level of management between the non-managerial employees and the organization's leaders. Smaller organizations also generally have fewer managers than larger organizations. The potential for advancement may be easier for a first-line manager to be promoted to middle management.

What are Non-Managerial Employees?

Non-managerial employees are placed into categories according to their job functions. In an office environment, non-managerial job titles may range from administrative assistant to payroll specialist to computer technician. Other factors that distinguish non-managerial employees from managers is that non-managerial workers may not have the flexibility in their schedules that managers have. For example, non-managerial employees might have to report their working hours using a time clock and many are held to a strict schedule, with little room for, say, an extra 15 minutes for lunch without having their pay docked for the time away from work. In addition, employees in some non-managerial positions may have little room for advancement into management without acquiring management skills and demonstrating leadership capabilities.

How Do Managers Differ From Nonmanagerial Employees?

Managers, at all levels, have other employees directly reporting to them. This is a key responsibility associated with the managerial role. Employees in most non-managerial positions do not have supervisory duties, although there are non-managerial positions such as "team lead," which provide guidance to other non-managerial employees, but who do not have supervisory authority. Another key responsibility associated with the managerial role is decision making power. Managers are required to make decisions for groups of non-managerial employees, and the employees must follow the manager's direction.

Perks and Benefits

Along with the managerial employee's additional responsibilities come added benefits. Managers might receive name-labeled or reserved parking spaces, additional vacation time and a corporate credit card. Managers also tend to have larger office spaces, as reported by the ERI Distance Learning Center. A non-managerial employee generally receives these perks as he rises in his career or if he is a top-performer.

Differences in Earnings

Managerial employees generally earn higher wages than non-managerial employees. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the 2017 median annual salary of a basic managerial employee, an administrative services manager, at $94,020. The median is the salary in the middle, which means that half of employees with this job title earn more and half earn less. Middle and upper management salaries can be much higher. Non-managerial employees earned lower wages. Payroll and timekeeping clerks, for example, earned median annual salaries of $43,890 and office clerks earned $31,500 as of May 2017, according to the BLS.