The Difference Between HR Generalist and HR Manager (2022)

Though they both belong to the Human Resources Department, there is a difference between HR Generalist and HR Manager, mainly in terms of their roles and responsibilities. HR Manager is probably one of the most important parts of an organization. He or she runs a complete department that comprises of a group of people or a whole team working together on different duties, roles and responsibilities whereas HR Generalists are basically entry-level employees in the HR Department of an organization. They typically work hand in hand with their employers.

The Difference Between HR Generalist and HR Manager (1)

Whether your company is big, medium or small, someone needs to be responsible for taking care of all the human resources needs if you want your company to continue operating well. Usually though, in larger companies or organizations, the employer or the management would have to divide the job responsibilities among different employees of different levels such as generalists, managers, and directors. Now let’s take a closer look at the difference between HR Generalist and HR Manager in terms of their position level and roles to gain a better understanding of what they do in and for the organization.

Importance of HR Generalist vs HR Manager

Since the HR Generalist has ample knowledge and should be able to communicate well with the employees regarding all the aspects of the HR needs of an organization, the HR Manager would then typically be the link between the employees and the senior management of the organization.

On one hand, HR Generalists (HRG) monitors staff turnover and logistics to find out when and where new employees need to be hired whereas the HRM is in charge of planning, creating and executing strategies for HR management and HR development. The HRG should be familiar with how many employees are required in each department so that if any are missing, steps can immediately be taken to complete the different departments on the contrary the HR Manager would have to oversee the overall administrative needs of the organization and lead the team which is in charge of implementation of all policies. They may also be in charge of supervising the generalists and provide advice or consultation in terms of hiring new employees.

One of the more important responsibilities of the HRG would be to ensure the personal and professional development of all the personnel and employees in the organization. This would involve activities such as employee orientation, training, and development but an HRM is in charge of planning, creating and executing strategies for HR management and HR development.

(Video) Difference between HR Generalist and HR Manager

For smaller organizations, the HR Manager is typically the only person in the whole department and is in charge of all the different roles. He or she is responsible for establishing and maintaining the appropriate systems needed for measuring any and all aspects of the development of the HR Department. On the other hand, HRG would also be in charge of the welfare, safety, health, wellness, and counseling of the employees. He/she could be involved in the development and execution of any and all policy documents and handbooks which will be referred to by the other personnel.

A big part of the communication which happens inside a company is typically generated by the HR Department and the HRG plays a very important role in this aspect. The HRG is one of the key members in the process of making decisions when it comes to employee communication and would be the one who will come up with the content which would be disseminated to the employees.

Difference between the duties of an HR Generalist and HR Manager

HRG is typically involved in the performance management process. They would have to work closely with senior or management level employees within the organization whereas The HRM The HRM keeps track of, measures and reports any and all HR concerns, opportunities and plans for development and achievement all within the agreed upon timescales and formats.

The HRG may also be required to create and develop a good system for compensation and benefits which would fit right into the HR responsibilities of the organization. The benefits and compensation systems for the employees is essential and it has to be developed very well. On the other hand, The HRM is responsible for managing and developing staff for direct reporting. He/she would also be in charge of managing and controlling any expenditure within the department so that they are sure to stay within the allotted budget.

Expectations from HRG vs HRM

Although an HRM is responsible for holding communications with other departmental or functional heads to be able to get a good understanding of all relevant aspects and needs of the HR Department. This is done to ensure that they are always fully informed and updated of all HR goals, objectives and achievements on the other hand an efficient HRG must be able to find, analyze and finally present any relevant information well so that everyone in the organization would be able to understand it, whether it would be the highest ranking members of the organization or the lowest ranking ones.

  • The HRG would also have to be very systematic, organized and efficient especially when it comes to solving problems and managing or filing the employee database or employee systems and the HRM is supposed to maintain knowledge and awareness in terms of all the most current HR developmental theories and techniques so that they will be able to provide the correct interpretation to everyone within the company.
  • Since the HRG would be dealing with and communicating with almost all of the employees in all the levels of the organization, he/she must have above average to excellent communication skills. In contrast to HRG, HRM is in charge of planning and executing training of higher ranking employees such as senior managers. He/she would also have to maintain good contacts with outside trainers and other useful resources.
  • The HRG must also be able to comprehend legalities in terms of business laws which are related to human resources and employee/employment rights. He/she would also have to know how to apply these laws and legalities in the daily work, the welfare of the staff and when creating company policies and other such documentation. Comparing with HRG, HRM contributes to the evaluation and development of HR strategies and performance along with the executive team in the organization. He or she makes sure that all the activities and events in the organization meet all requirements for quality management as well as safety, health and environmental policies.

Difference in Qualifications of HRG vs HRM

As you can see, the HRG may be an entry-level employee in the company but he/she should still be educated with a degree level since a lot of roles and responsibilities are involved. Other qualifications may be required; including previous HR experience, depending on how big the company is and how many employees would have to be handled in the organization

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Computer skills are very important for HRG so that he/she would be able to work with any kinds of software. The fact is, different organizations use different kinds of software, which are basically similar so knowing the computer basics would really be very helpful on the other hand being an HRM, one must have higher academic credentials and high level of managerial skills as compared to any other profession in an organization. To reach at a senior level position in HRM, you must have two year or four managerial degrees with advanced computer skills.

Other miscellaneous difference between HRG and HRM

The most important role of the HRG would be to start and lead any HR practices and goals which would provide an employee-oriented environment. This would then lead to a culture of high performance which focuses on empowerment and productivity of the workforce. Now let’s move on to the higher level position, which is the HR Manager.

This is done to determine the needs in terms of staffing, come up with and create job opening postings, review resumes from applicants and conducts the initial interviews and other duties which are considered to be “basic tasks” in the whole department.

From recruiting new employees for the organization, doing research on potential benefits for the employees, filing all employee paperwork with state and/or federal agencies and organizing and preparing all the year-end tax paperwork, the HR Department is basically in charge of a majority of the administrative needs of the organization whereas aside from staffing and recruiting logistics, the HRG helps in the development of the organization and improvement of current management systems.

He/she would be in charge of employment and compliance of employees to regulatory concerns. HRG is usually part of committees in charge of enhancing employee relations, facilitating company-wide events and other similar activities and

The Hierarchy in the Organization

When it comes to larger organizations, HR generalists are usually found at the bottom of the organizational hierarchy but HR Managers are right above them in terms of the job level or position. Some generalists perform all the entry level functions along with other administrative functions while others have additional responsibilities within the department.

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On the other hand, HR managers are in charge of more responsibilities and communicate with higher ranking members of the organization aside from all the other employees. Now that you better understand the difference between HR Generalist and HR Manager, you can assign the right people in your organization.

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APA 7
Em, S. (2018, August 14). The Difference Between HR Generalist and HR Manager. Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects. http://www.differencebetween.net/business/organizations-business/the-difference-between-hr-generalist-and-hr-manager/.
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Em, Simy. "The Difference Between HR Generalist and HR Manager." Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects, 14 August, 2018, http://www.differencebetween.net/business/organizations-business/the-difference-between-hr-generalist-and-hr-manager/.

FAQs

What is the difference between HR generalist and HR manager? ›

Though both positions function in a similar capacity of managing employees in an organization, the HR generalists focus on the day-to-day tasks of human resources. Alternately the HR manager is more focused on managing the employees working in the human resource department (including the HR generalists).

What is the difference between HR generalist and HR recruiter? ›

Human Resource Generalist is a broad term used to characterise a professional who performs duties that relate to human capital at organisations. Recruiters are human resource professionals who specifically specialise in sourcing and/or hiring of staff.

What is the role of a HR generalist? ›

The Human Resource Generalist will run the daily functions of the Human Resource (HR) department including hiring and interviewing staff, administering pay, benefits, and leave, and enforcing company policies and practices.

What is the difference between HR manager and operations manager? ›

HR is in the objectives and goals of each. People Operations proactively focuses on employee engagement and retention as well as leadership and management strategies, while Human Resources is more focused on the practical aspects of employee management including legal, ethical and structural.

What level is an HR generalist? ›

The HR generalist is an entry-level position in the HR department. Organizations hire HR generalists when their HR team has at least an HR manager and a few HR specialists and they need some hands-on assistance for the daily tasks.

Is an HR generalist higher than an HR specialist? ›

Most HR specialists are part of a larger team of HR professionals, including other specialists, generalists and managers. HR specialists' responsibilities are generally less varied than those of HR generalists. If you enjoy a more focused set of responsibilities, you may find a career as an HR specialist satisfying.

Can HR recruiter become HR generalist? ›

Whereas HR recruitment is confined to only recruitment process. So if a person is having experience in recruitment then it is bit tough to get into HR genralist profile but it is not impossible. Anything calls for knowledge.

What is needed to be an HR generalist? ›

HR Generalist Requirements:

Bachelors degree in human resources or related (essential). 2 years of experience as an HR coordinator (essential). Deep understanding of Labor Law and employment equity regulations. Efficient HR administration and people management skills.

What is a job that HR generalists do not do? ›

What is a job that HR generalists do not do? -Focus on one area of HR. -Ensure compliance with federal and state regulations. -Handle employee relations.

Is HR Generalist a good job? ›

An HR generalist may have a particular experience in one area of human resources, but they are competent in all of a human resource department's functions. Because of this breadth of knowledge, they can be a valuable asset to an organization—particularly small organizations that need resourceful employees.

Who is higher HR or manager? ›

When it comes to larger organizations, HR generalists are usually found at the bottom of the organizational hierarchy but HR Managers are right above them in terms of the job level or position.

Who has more power HR or manager? ›

Who has the higher authority in an organisation, operation manager or HR manager? If the company is well-managed the operations manager has higher authority.

What position is higher than HR manager? ›

Vice president of human resources or chief human resources officer (CHRO) An organization might have either a VP of HR or a CHRO that reports directly to the business owner or the CEO. This is the most senior-level position in an HR team.

What is the highest position in HR? ›

A VP of human resource is usually the highest HR position in a company. They are responsible for running different aspects of the HR department.

What are the 4 types of HR? ›

HR Specialists

recruitment. labor relations. training and development. human resources information systems (HRIS) professionals.

What is the next step after HR generalist? ›

An HR generalist can be considered a training role in becoming an HR manager. Companies usually hire people as an HR generalist and promote them to an HR manager, rather than hiring a manager directly.

Is HR generalist hard? ›

Yes, being an HR generalist is a stressful job.

This position requires an individual to juggle many responsibilities, from hiring and recruitment to training and labor relationships.

What is the lowest HR level? ›

In addition to assistant and intern, other entry-level HR jobs include recruiter, analyst, staff coordinator, associate, and trainee.

Which is better specialist or generalist? ›

In organizations, generalists tend to have roles that are very loosely defined. A specialist has a role that is narrower and more pronounced. An advantage of being a generalist is, with having a greater range of issues, one can understand issues that a specialist simply cannot understand.

Does HR generalist do recruitment? ›

Responsibilities an HR Generalist could have include recruiting, benefits and absence administration, employee relations, HRBP, and a technical/analytics role.

Is recruiter and HR same? ›

In summary, the key difference between HR and Recruitment is that recruiters attract and screen talent to meet the hiring objectives of the company. In contrast, HR helps employees and the company develop a comfortable work environment by providing conflict resolving skills and ensuring certain standards are followed.

Why do you want to work in HR department? ›

As an HR professional, I enjoy being able to help people fulfill their potential by hiring the right people and then helping them thrive in their jobs. HR allows me to express my personality every day. I love the day-to-day tasks we engage in and helping to solve the problems that may arise.

What is higher than HR manager? ›

A Vice president of human resources and chief human resource officer is in higher positions than HR managers. They are responsible for the overall management of the HR department. They develop and implement strategies for the department.

Which is higher HR generalist or HR administrator? ›

HR generalists are superior to HR administrators, and their duties vary based on their skills level. Human resources generalists are involved in people-related tasks, while HR administrators are associated with paper-related tasks.

What is the highest post in HR? ›

A VP of human resource is usually the highest HR position in a company. They are responsible for running different aspects of the HR department.

What level is a HR generalist? ›

An HR generalist is a mid-level position.

Other mid-level human resources positions are the human resources specialists and human resources supervisor. Senior-level positions in Human Resources include the human resources manager, human resources partner, and human resources directors.

What are the 4 types of HR? ›

HR Specialists

recruitment. labor relations. training and development. human resources information systems (HRIS) professionals.

What is head of HR called? ›

A chief human resources officer (CHRO) or chief people officer (CPO) is a corporate officer who oversees all aspects of human resource management and industrial relations policies, practices and operations for an organization.

What is the lowest position in HR? ›

HR Manager – HR Managers are the lowest of the high-end HR employees. They guide the overall direction of the department, they're responsible for problem-solving, and the interface between the middle managers and the VP-level directors.

What's next after HR generalist? ›

An HR generalist can be considered a training role in becoming an HR manager. Companies usually hire people as an HR generalist and promote them to an HR manager, rather than hiring a manager directly.

What is the next level after HR generalist? ›

HR manager/HR business partner

HR managers see the organization at a much higher level than HR generalists, specialists or assistants.

Who does the HR generalist report to? ›

HR generalists originate and lead HR practices and objectives that provide an employee-oriented, high-performance culture. They usually report to the human resources director or HR manager and assist and advise company managers on HR issues.

Which field of HR is best? ›

Top Highest Paying HR Job in India
  • Recruitment Manager.
  • Training and Development Manager.
  • Compensation and Benefits Manager.
  • HR Manager.
  • HR Consultant.
  • International HR Associate.
  • Executive Recruiter.
  • Labor Relation Specialist.
22 Mar 2022

Why HR salary is low? ›

Industries Believes that if others can perform HR Activities that why they need to hire Specialized people this leads to HR people to work in less paid job. Now a day it becomes trend of hiring HR in less paid salary as it is function which can be performed by anyone.

Is HR Generalist a good job? ›

An HR generalist may have a particular experience in one area of human resources, but they are competent in all of a human resource department's functions. Because of this breadth of knowledge, they can be a valuable asset to an organization—particularly small organizations that need resourceful employees.

Can anyone be a HR generalist? ›

There are no formal training or certification requirements for HR Generalists, although many employers require candidates to hold a bachelor's degree in business, human resources, or a related field. Certification is voluntary, but some employers may require or prefer it for their HR personnel.

Can you be an HR generalist without a degree? ›

But what if you don't have a degree in HR? Can you still enter the field? Experts say that yes, you can. “There is no barrier to entry to work in HR,” says Matt Stollak, SPHR, Associate Professor of Business Administration at St.

What is a job that HR generalists do not do? ›

What is a job that HR generalists do not do? -Focus on one area of HR. -Ensure compliance with federal and state regulations. -Handle employee relations.

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