What are the differences between management and administration?

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Even though the two terms are commonly used interchangeably, they differ in a number of ways. Whereas administration is responsible for making crucial decisions that affect an entire business establishment, management on the other hand only makes decisions within confines described by the administration.

Another difference is that contrary to...

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Even though the two terms are commonly used interchangeably, they differ in a number of ways. Whereas administration is responsible for making crucial decisions that affect an entire business establishment, management on the other hand only makes decisions within confines described by the administration.

Another difference is that contrary to the administration which plans, formulates policies and sets organizations’ objectives, management is responsible for the implementation of those plans and policies as well as achievement of the outlined objectives.

In terms of focus, management focuses on managing work and administration focus on the most efficient ways of allocating the available scarce resources.

Management is a term used in profitable ventures such as business establishments. Conversely, the term administration is used in government, religious, and education institutions.

In most instances, personnel who work at management level are salaried employees whereas those who work at administrative level are owners who benefit from profits based on based on their share capital.

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Harold Koontz defines management as the “art of getting things done through and with the help of people in formally organized groups." It is strategically used to direct the efforts of a group of people towards the attainment of set goals. Its core functions are planning, organizing, leading, and controlling. Administration, on the other hand, is particularly focused on goal setting and resource allocation within organizations. In other words, management is mostly involved with the functions of directing and controlling of business processes, while administration concerns itself with the planning and organizing functions. It then follows that administration is a top-level activity done by business owners, rather than employees. The management team consists of people employed by the business owners to assist in running the business. As such, management is a middle or lower level business activity. Business administrators are executive workers who control the operations of the entire business and are senior to the business managers.

Since administration concerns itself with goal setting, administrators decide on what should be done and when it should be done. Managers, on the other hand, work on who does the work and how it should be done.

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