In every organization, we generally find two (02) types of employees most seen. These are

  1.  There are some employees, who only execute the work but lack any administrative, supervisory, and/or managerial capacity. They do not take any decision but only implement the directions and instructions given by their superiors.
  2.  On the other hand, there are employees who have administrative, supervisory, and/or managerial capacity. Their job description allows them to decide on official matters further and in addition to the execution of work. The former type of employee is defined as ‘Worker’ in the Bangladesh Labour Act while the latter type is not defined anywhere.

To mark the distinction, let us term them as ‘non-worker’. As per Section 2 (65) of the Bangladesh Labour Act 2006 as amended by the 2013 Amendment: ‘worker’ means any person including an apprentice employed in any establishment or industry, either directly or through a contractor, in whichever name it is referred to, to do any skilled, unskilled, manual, technical, trade promotional or clerical work for hire or reward, whether the terms of employment be expressed or implied, but does not include a person employed mainly in a managerial, supervisory or administrative capacity.  In order to clearly identify the true nature of the work of an employee discharging services in a supervisory, administrative and managerial capacity, the newly issued Rule has provided a definition for these words.
Under Rule 2(g) ‘Supervisory officer’ has been defined as a person, who by deriving powers/authority in writing from an employer or managing authorities, by exercising such authority provides or supervises the  objectives, determines the ambit of work, controls the implementation of work, evaluates or reviews the
work provides directions to the workers in connection with an activity or service of a section of a factory or establishment.

Rule 2(j) clarifies that ‘Person employed in Administrative or Managerial capacity’ derives powers in writing from an employer or managing authorities, and is employed for approving or controlling the expenses of the establishment and the recruitment, allocation of wages and benefits, termination or
removal from services, paying out the final settlement of the workers or employees of the factory or establishment.

A Worker when on very solitary occasions performs the functions of a manager, supervisory or administrative officer does not cease to be a Worker. What is important in determining whether a person is a ‘Worker’ or not is to see the main nature of the job done by him and not so much his designation. It has to be resolved in each case by reference to the evidence on record (i.e. the actual job description). It is pertinent to note that for the employees falling within the worker category, Bangladesh Labour Act is applicable.

Whereas for the employees who are non-worker, the Bangladesh Labour Act is not applicable and the only governing rule is the ‘master-servant rule’. The master-servant rule provides that the employment contract will dictate all the terms of employment between the employer and the employee. All the rights and obligations of the employee will flow from the employment contract. Unless any clause in the employment contract contravenes any provision of the laws of the land and basic principles of the law of contract, the employment contract will be the governing law for the employer and the employee of the non-worker category.