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line manager vs. immediate manager

English translation: specific vs. generic term

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20:13 Aug 13, 2007
English to English translations [PRO]
Social Sciences - Human Resources
English term or phrase: line manager vs. immediate manager
I am in doubt as to the meaning of the two mentioned persons in the company.

In one place, an employee should contact his/her line manager, and 2 pages down, the said employee is advised to contact his/her immediate manager.

Can the names above be synonymous? I've found such answer in the English-Polish KudoZ.

Any help would be appreciated.
Adam Załuski
Local time: 14:35
English translation:specific vs. generic term
Explanation:
This is the conclusion I come to from the link below. The sentence is taken directly from page 20 of the document.
Line manager is a specific term referring to someone who is the immediate (i.e. nearest) to the employee.
Selected response from:

William [Bill] Gray
Norway
Local time: 14:35
Grading comment
Thank you. I have chosen this particular answer because there is no explicit hint in the text that the two are different. I really appreciate the help from all of you!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
3 +1possible difference
Mark Nathan
4See comments below...
Tony M
3 +1There can be a major difference.
jccantrell
3specific vs. generic term
William [Bill] Gray


  

Answers


7 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
See comments below...


Explanation:
Unless there is any reason to think that a specific distinction is being made, I would certainly naturally regard these two terms as synonymous; 'line manager' tends to be more 'in jargon' in HR speak, whereas 'immediate manager' tends to be more the way ordinary people speak.


Tony M
France
Local time: 14:35
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 50
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12 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
specific vs. generic term


Explanation:
This is the conclusion I come to from the link below. The sentence is taken directly from page 20 of the document.
Line manager is a specific term referring to someone who is the immediate (i.e. nearest) to the employee.


Example sentence(s):
  • 3. Line Manager - refers to the immediate manager of an individual employee

    Reference: http://64.233.183.104/search?q=cache:Cl743_rXtKAJ:gov.im/lib...
William [Bill] Gray
Norway
Local time: 14:35
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 16
Grading comment
Thank you. I have chosen this particular answer because there is no explicit hint in the text that the two are different. I really appreciate the help from all of you!
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

36 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
possible difference


Explanation:
As Tony and Bill have said your line manager is usually your immediate superior. However, in very large organizations there could be a hierachy within the line management, particularly when you consider that the term is sometimes used in a more general way to mean a product line, or a particular organizational aspect. In this case there could be an intermediate manager, who reported to the line manager, or even to another intermediate manager.
In these days of multinational companies "lines" can get very long!

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Note added at 53 mins (2007-08-13 21:06:34 GMT)
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Another point is that the hierachy does not stop at line managers, who also have "immediate managers".
So if your employee was a line manager, they would contact their immediate manager.

Mark Nathan
Local time: 14:35
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 8

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Sheila Wilson: Works this way often at Shell - immediate manager may not have the same wide-ranging authority as line manager
10 hrs
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2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
There can be a major difference.


Explanation:
At a lot of defense oriented software companies, they have "matrixed support" That is, there is a functional manager (probably what you are calling "line manager") who is responsible for getting work (within the company) for his people.
Once this work is found, the person now works for Project A and has an immediate manager on that project who tells him/her what to do on a day-to-day basis.
When it comes time for performance reviews, both managers will talk about your performance befor the functional manager gets together with others in his chain and sets the new salaries.

Read the links, this might help.


    Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matrix_management
    Reference: http://management.about.com/od/projectmanagement/g/MatrixMan...
jccantrell
United States
Local time: 05:35
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 19

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Sheila Wilson: Works that way in industry too - project managers are not always line managers
8 hrs
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