Differences between Administrator Roles in the Office 365 Admin Portal and Azure AD

Microsoft Office 365 Administrators are often easily confused when they do an administrative task is PowerShell that involves retrieving, or changing the RBAC administrative roles for users in the tenant.  The Administrative Role names used in the Office 365 Portal do not always match the equivalent role used in PowerShell. The reason for this is that PowerShell uses the underlying Azure AD RBAC Administrative Role name, whereas the Office 365 Admin Portal has it’s own Administrative Role display name. Most of the time they are the same, but a few role names are different.

This post shows the Administrator Roles used in both the Office 365 Admin Portal, and Azure AD, and the equivalent roles where the names differ.

The Office 365 Admin Portal

There are 11 default Administrator Roles in an E3 / E5 Office 365 Portal – one Global Administrator and 10 Customized Administrator Roles as shown here:

Note: you can assign multiple Administrator Roles to a user.

Azure AD PowerShell

In the Azure AD V1 PowerShell module (MSOnline), Azure AD has 38 Administrator Roles available as shown here:

Equivalent Azure AD Administrator Roles for Office 365 Portal Administrator Roles

You can see that some of the Office 365 Administrator Role names differ.  The equivalent Azure AD Administrator Role names are listed below with any differences highlighted in red.

Office 365 Admin Role

Equivalent Azure AD Admin Role

Global administrator

Company Administrator

Billing administrator

Billing Administrator

Dynamics 365 service administrator

CRM Service Administrator

Exchange administrator

Exchange Service Administrator

Password administrator

Helpdesk Administrator

Skype for Business administrator

Lync Service Administrator

PowerBI service administrator

Power BI Service Administrator

Reports reader

Reports Reader

Service administrator

Service Support Administrator

SharePoint administrator

SharePoint Service Administrator

User management administrator

User Account Administrator

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