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249 Human Resources and Business Vocabulary

Human Resources and Business Vocabulary

I cannot stress enough the importance of English human resources and business vocabulary.

If you are a Human Resources professional who needs to use English, you will be aware that knowing specific HR vocabulary is an important aspect of your day to day job, whether for presentations, meetings or emails.


Human resources and business vocabulary


Today we will focus on English vocabulary that will help you in the human resources job.


1. Absence: A period of time when someone is not present at a place, job, etc.


2. Absenteeism rate: The absenteeism rate, absence rate, or absence percentage, is the rate of unplanned absence due to sickness or other causes. 


3. Accident at work/industrial injury: A work accident, workplace accident, occupational accident, or accident at work is a "discrete occurrence in the course of work" leading to physical or mental occupational injury.


4. Apprenticeshi: Refers to the time period working as an apprentice. 


5. Applicant/candidate: A person who makes a formal application for something, especially a job.


6. (Hold) accountable: Responsible for and having to explain your actions. 


7. Application form: An application for employment is a standard business document that is prepared with questions deemed relevant by employers. It is used to determine the best candidate to fill a specific role within the company. 

8. An opening: New job available. 

9. Authoritarian: Enforcing strict obedience to authority at the expense of personal freedom.


10. Adult education: A course (via lectures or correspondence) for adults who are not otherwise engaged in formal study.


11. Attrition: A term used to describe voluntary and involuntary terminations, deaths, and employee retirements that result in a reduction to the employer’s physical workforce. 


12. Apprenticeship: Apprenticeship is a system for training practitioners of a trade or profession with on-the-job training and often some accompanying study (classroom work and reading).

13. Asset: Something valuable owned by an organization available for the payment of debts or to generate income | a valuable quality. 


14. Aptitude test: A test designed to determine a person's ability in a particular skill or field of knowledge.


15. A degree/diploma: The official certificate proving your degree of studies.


16. Analytical: Using or skilled in using reasoning.


17. A permanent/open-ended/unlimited -term contract: A written legal agreement between an employer and an employee but for no specific period.


18. A top (US)/senior (GB) executive: A person higher than an executive.


19. Advisory service: A consulting service in which a CPA develops findings and conclusions and recommendations that are presented to the client for consideration and decision making.


20. Apprentice: Someone who has agreed to work for a skilled person for a particular period of time and often for low payment in order to acquire that person’s skills.


21. A covering/cover letter: A cover letter is a written document submitted with a job application explaining the applicant’s credentials and interest in the open position.


22. Advocacy: Promotion, revendication, pleading. 


23. Apply: Put yourself forward as a candidate for a job. 


24. Assessment of applicants: Candidate assessment refers to the process an employer undertakes to determine whether they are suitable for the role they’ve applied for. 

25. Autonomous: Independent and having the power to make your own decisions.  


26. A clerical worker/a clerk: Refers to a person who works at an office performing tasks such as keeping records, writing correspondence or filing.


27. Assistant: A person who ranks below a senior person.


28. (Performance) Appraisal: Meeting in which an employee discusses his or her progress, objectives, and needs at work with his or her manager.


29. Back pay: Payment for work done in the past that was withheld at the time, or for work that could have been done had the worker not been prevented from doing so.


30. Business leader: A very wealthy or powerful businessman.


31. Background: Former experience.


32. Breach: An act of breaking a law, agreement, promise or relationship. 


33. Bargaining power: Bargaining power is the relative ability of workers in an argumentative situation to exert influence over each other. 


34. Bias (towards): Prejudice in favor of one thing or person compared with another, in a way considered to be unfair.


35. Basic salary: Basic salary, also called base salary, is the amount of money a salaried employee regularly earns before any additions or deductions are applied to their earnings.


36. Blue-collar worker: A blue-collar worker is a working class person who performs manual labor. Blue-collar work may involve skilled or unskilled labor. 


37. White-collar worker: A white-collar worker is a person who performs professional, desk, managerial, or administrative work. White-collar work may be performed in an office or other administrative setting.


38. Business hours/office hours: Business hours are the hours during the day in which business is commonly conducted. 

39. Be made redundant: When you are no longer employed because there is no more work available.


40. Briefing: A meeting for giving information or instructions.


41. Bonus: An amount of money added to wages on a seasonal basis, especially as a reward for good performance.


42. Clerical work/office work: Clerical work typically refers to a variety of office and administrative support duties. 


43. Candidate: A person who applies for a job or is competing for a position. 


44. Compensation for permanent disability: A medical-legal term used to describe a stage in the workers’ compensation system. Usually it coincides with the injury’s stabilization, but it does not necessarily mean that you will not continue to recover.


45. Cut: A reduction in the amount or number of something.


46. Credible: Able to be trusted.


47. Confidential: To be kept secret. 


48. Conduct: Appropriate behavior of a person expected by the organization they work for.


49. Coaching: The job of a professional coach.


50. Contractual situation: A contractual relationship is a legal bond between at least two people who agree to at least one term or promise.


51. Compulsory: When something must be done because of a rule or law.


52. Credentials: Refer to those abilities and experience of a person which show that the person is qualified for a particular job or activity. 


53. Cash flow: The total amount of money moving into and out of business.


54. Cost-of-living allowance: An amount of money that an employee gets in addition to his or her normal pay, because the cost of living in a particular area is high.


55. Company day nursery: A company that provides people to take care of other peoples’ kids.


56. Close: To complete a business deal.


57. Chief executive officer (CEO): The chief executive officer, or CEO, is the top position in an organization and is responsible for implementing existing plans and policies, ensuring successful management of the business and setting future strategy. 


 58. Chief Financial Officer (CFO): The Chief Financial Officer is mainly in charge of the financial risks. His tasks include financial planning, record keeping and financial reporting.


 59. Chief operating officer: A position that can be one of the highest-ranking executive positions in an organization.


 60. Credentials: Documents that state the abilities and experience of a person and show that the person is qualified for a particular job or activity.


 61. Chief administrative officer: A person who supervises the daily operations of a business and is ultimately responsible for its performance. 

62. Collaborative: Accomplished by working jointly.


63. Competency: The quality of being adequately or well qualified.


64. Consulting service: Service provided by a professional advisor.


65. Cohesion: When the members of a group are united. 


66. Day shift: A period of time worked during the daylight hours in a hospital, factory, etc., as opposed to the night shift.


67. Disability pension: A pension paid to someone who cannot work because of an illness, injury, or medical condition.


68. Disciplinary measure/disciplinary sanction: Disciplinary procedures are a set way for an employer to deal with disciplinary issues.


69. Department head/head of department/department supervisor: A person who is in charge of a particular department or division or in short, a person who heads the whole operational section. 


70. Deliverable: Something that can be provided as the product of development.


71. Discrimination: The practice of treating people differently from others, especially in an unfair way.


72. Dismissal: The act of ordering or allowing someone to leave. / Firing someone.


73. Dismissal for cause: Being fired with cause or also referred to as dismissal with cause essentially means you were fired for a really, really good reason.


74. Development: A process in which something passes to a different stage.


75. Doable: Something that can be achieved.


 76. Draw up: To prepare something official in writing, e.g. a contract.


77. Dismissal without notice: Means that employees can be fired without written notice in the event of an act of serious misconduct.


78. Early retirement: The practice of leaving employment before the statutory age, especially on favorable financial terms.


79. Employer: A person or an organization that employs people.


80. Employee: A person who is working in a company.


81. Excel: Distinguish oneself.


82. Employment agency: An agency that finds employers or employees for those seeking them.


83. Executive: Refers to someone in a top position, especially in business, who makes decisions and puts them into action. 


84. Employment contract / labour contract: A written legal agreement between an employer and an employee, giving details about the employee's job, pay, working hours, etc.


85. Expense report: Detailed report produced on a monthly, quarterly, or yearly basis that accounts for all the expenses a business incurs.


86. Employment contract: Refers to a written legal agreement between an employer and an employee, stating details about the employee’s job, pay, working hours, etc. 


87. Employment for a trial period: In a nutshell, these are short-term periods employers use to try out job candidates before rewarding them with full-time status. 


88. Effectiveness: Power to be effective.


89. Employment office: An employment agency is an organization which matches employers to employees.


90. Employment rate: Employment rates are defined as a measure of the extent to which available labour resources (people available to work) are being used. They are calculated as the ratio of the employed to the working age population.


 91. Enrollment: The process of officially joining a course, training or group.


92. Executive cadres: Means the immediate subordinate group that support the Administrative Staff and includes Higher Executive Officers and Executive Officers.


93. Ethical: Following accepted rules of behavior.


94. Executive personnel: A person or group responsible for the administration of a project, activity, or business.


95. Evaluate: To judge or calculate the value of something.


96. Exit permit: An official certificate or document granting authorization for a person to leave a country.


97. Experienced person: Having knowledge or skill in a particular field, especially a profession or job, gained over a period of time.


98. Family allowances: A grant to an employee made typically by a government or an employer in addition to regular salary and graded according to occupation and the number of dependent children.


99. Framework: The basic structure, system or process of something.


100. Fall behind: Fail to do something in the expected time frame.


101. Excused absence: An excused absence is a period of administratively authorized absence from official duties without loss of pay and without charge to an employee's leave account.


102. Fire: To remove someone from their job.


103. National holiday /public holiday: A public holiday, national holiday, or legal holiday is a holiday generally established by law and is usually a non-working day during the year. Sovereign nations and territories observe holidays based on events of significance to their history.


104. Fill in for someone: To replace an employee during an absence.


105. Freelancer: A person who works on his responsibility freely in more than one company part-time.


106. Foster: To promote the growth or development of something.


107. Full employment: The condition in which virtually all who are able and willing to work are employed.


108. Facilitation: Act of assisting the progress or improvement of something.


109. General strike: A strike of workers in all or most industries.


110. Ground-rule: A basic rule or informal agreement about how something should be done.


111. Gross wages and salaries: Gross wages include all of an employee's pay before taxes and other mandatory and discretionary deductions have been taken out.


112. General manager (GM) or Managing Director: The main person who is in charge of a company.


113. Generalist: A modern scholar who is in a position to acquire more than superficial knowledge about many different interests


114. Give notice: To respect the legal period before quitting a job. It is usually done by a certified letter.


115. Healthcare: The organized provision of medical care to individuals or a community.


116. Human resources director: A person who is in charge of the department that deals with the employment, training, support, records of a company’s employees.


117. Higher education/advanced education: Education beyond high school, especially at a college or university.


118. Human right: Any basic freedom to which all people are entitled.


119. Independent unions: An independent unions is a trade union that represents workers in one plant or company and is free of employer control. 


120. Interpersonal: Relating to relationships or communication between people.


121. Incentive: Something which encourages or motivates a person to do something. 


122. Index-linked wages: Index-linked wages, pensions, or insurance policies increase or decrease according to the rise or fall of prices.


123. Impact: To have a strong effect or influence on somebody or something.


124. Internal regulations: Internal Regulation means the Articles of Association, organizational rules, statutes, plans and other internal principles, rules, procedures and acts of internal management.


125. Innovation: The introduction of a new idea or method.


126. Irregular work/discontinuous work: Irregular and/or precarious work is frequently associated with part-time employment, seasonal and casual work, self-employment, fixed-term work, temporary work, on-call work, home-based workers, and agency work.


127. Identification badge: Means a badge that a person wears to show the person’s identity at work.


128. Initiative: Readiness to embark on bold new ventures


129. Implementation: The act of providing a means for accomplishing something.


130. Jargon: The language used by a particular group of people.


131. Job advertisement: An announcement in a newspaper or on the internet about a job that people can apply for.


132. Job center: A place where unemployed people can go for advice and information about jobs that are available.


133. Employment: The condition of having paid work.


134. Job: Refers to the regular work a person does to earn money.


135. Job application: An application for employment is a standard business document that is prepared with questions deemed relevant by employers. It is used to determine the best candidate to fill a specific role within the company.


136. Job description: Description of the responsibilities associated with a given job.


137. Job evaluation: A job evaluation is a systematic way of determining the value/worth of a job in relation to other jobs in an organization.


138. Job seeker: A person looking for a job. 


139. Job satisfaction: A feeling of fulfilment or enjoyment that a person derives from their job.


140. junior clerk/junior employee: Junior Employee means an employee under the age of twenty-one years who is not employed as an apprentice.


141. labor disputes: A labor dispute is a disagreement between an employer and employees regarding the terms of employment.


142. Launch: The official introduction of a new product or system.


143. Liaise: Act between parties with a view to reconciling differences


144. Layoff: A discharge, especially temporary, of a worker or workers.


145. Management: The act of controlling something.


See: Phrases to Order Something in Business English


146. Managing director: Person who oversees a project. 


147. Middle manager: A manager who is in charge of people or departments in a company, but is not in charge of the whole company and does not make important decisions about the company’s future.


148. Maternity leave: A period of absence from work granted to a mother before and after the birth of her child.


149. Milestone: An important stage in the development of something.


150. Minimum rate of pay / minimum wage: Minimum wages have been defined as “the minimum amount of remuneration that an employer is required to pay wage earners for the work performed during a given period”.


160. Misconduct: Unacceptable behavior by an employee.


161. New hire: Refers to that moment when a company accepts a new member in its work environment, usually with payment. 


162. Night shift: The period of time scheduled for work at night, as in a factory or other institution.


163. Outsourcing: When a company obtains a service from an outside supplier.


164. Organizational: Of or relating to an organization


165. Oriented: Adjusted or located in relation to surroundings.


166. Overtime: Time spent working in addition to your normal working hours.


167. Part time: Employed for or occupying only part of the usual working day or week.


168. Payroll: The total amount of salaries that a company pays to its employees.


169. Partial disability: The inability of the insured to perform one or more of the important duties of his or her occupation.


170. Position: Refers to the role/status of a person in the organization.


171. Promotion on seniority: Refers to the privileged status attained by an employee because of the length of continuous service with the same employer. 


172. Promotion: When someone is moved to a higher or more important position in an organization. 


173. Posting: Refers to the location where the person is working.


174. Problem solving: The thought processes involved in solving a problem.


175. Promotion: Refers to moving up the ladder in an organization in reward for hard work and commitment.


176. Remuneration: Payment for work or services.


177. Sick leave/sick day: A day taken off from work because of illness.


178. Staff retention: Keeping employees in a position or job.


179. Stakeholder: One who has an interest in something, especially a business.


180. Social and medical benefits: Some extra features for working people in terms of social and medical coverage. 


181. Sack/fire somebody: To remove someone from the job either due to under performing or other wrong reasons or as a way of saving the cost of employing them.


182. Shortage: A situation in which there is not enough of something.


183. Salary: An amount of money that an employee is paid each year.


184. Salary slip: Salary slip or a paycheck, also spelled pay check or pay cheque, is traditionally a paper document issued by an employer to pay an employee for services rendered. 


185. Systematic: Done according to a particular system in an organized way.


186. Supplier: A company or person that provides a service to an organization.


187. Stakeholder: A person who owns a share in a business.


188. Set the benchmark: Standard point or reference in which something can be compared or evaluated.


189. Pension: A regular payment made during a person's retirement from an investment fund to which that person or their employer has contributed during their working life.


190. Period of notice: In employment contracts, a notice period is a period of time between the receipt of the letter of dismissal and the end of the last working day.


191. Permanent job/steady job: Permanent employees work for an employer and are paid directly by that employer. 


192. Personnel department: The part of an organization concerned with the hiring, training, and welfare of employees.


193. Production bonus: Means any bonus payable by the Parties under the Contract on attainment of any specified rate, level or quantity of production of Hydrocarbons.


194. Professional qualifications: Professional certification, trade certification, or professional designation, often called simply certification or qualification, is a designation earned by a person to assure qualification to perform a job or task. 


195. Purchasing manager: Purchasing managers plan, direct, and coordinate the buying of materials, products, or services for wholesalers, retailers, or organizations. 


196. Re-employment: The act or an instance of employing or being employed again.


197. Resign: To decide to leave a job or position.


198.Resignation: The act of voluntarily leaving a job. 


199. Remuneration: Money paid for work or a service.


200. Recruit: To find suitable people to join a company or organization.


201. Retirement age: The age at which most people normally retire from work, traditionally specified as age 65.


202. Recruit somebody: To accept someone in a group or organization and make him an integral member of it.


203. Recruitment: Enlisting people for the army (or for a job or a cause etc.)


204. Resume/résumé: Refers to a document detailing the profile and background of a particular person.


205. Resource: Aid or support that may be drawn upon when needed.


206. Seasonal employment: Seasonal employment is temporary work to meet an organization's temporary needs during certain times of the year. 


207. Sales manager: A person in charge of a company’s sales activities and its sales force.


208. Specialist: An expert devoted to one occupation or branch of learning.


209. Skills: Skills refer to an ability to do an activity or a job well especially once you have gained expertise in it. 

210. Strategic: Relating to an elaborate and systematic plan of action


211. Senior clerk/senior employee: Senior Employee means any Employee who holds a leadership or managerial position at the Company and has a title with the Company of, or responsibilities equivalent to, that of either (i) a director or (ii) a position senior to director.


212. Skilled workers:A skilled worker is any worker who has special skill, training, knowledge which they can then apply to their work. 


213. Staff attendance: Is referred to employees showing up for work. 


214. Social costs: Social cost in neoclassical economics is the sum of the private costs resulting from a transaction and the costs imposed on the consumers.


216. Social insurance/national insurance: A system of compulsory contribution to provide government assistance in sickness, unemployment, etc.


217. Fixed-term contract: A written legal agreement between an employer and an employee but for a specific period.


218. Floor manager: Someone who is in charge of all activities and operations of a particular storey/floor in a large store.

219. Fired: Dismiss (an employee) from a job. informal


220. Flextime: A system of working a set number of hours with the starting and finishing times chosen within agreed limits by the employee.


221. Position: A place where someone or something is located or has been put.


222. Training period: A training period is a time-limited series of training sessions that always take place at the same time on one or more specific days at the same time.


223. Temporary worker (a temp): The person who is working for a short period of time.


224. The staff: Refers to a group of people who work for an organization. 


225. To lay somebody off/to make somebody redundant: To stop employing someone usually because of lack of work. 


226. Terminate a contract: To put an end to a legal agreement. 


227. Transfer: It refers to an act of moving something or someone to another place, organization, team, etc.


228. To appoint: To name or assign to a position. 


229. To sign up somebody: To accept someone in a group or organization and make him an integral member of it. 


230. Takeover: Taking control of a company by buying a sufficient amount of its shares.


231. Trial period: A trial period is a period of up to 90 days when an employer is allowed to dismiss the employee without the employee being able to raise a personal grievance for unjustified dismissal. 

232. To take on somebody: To accept someone in a group or organization and make him an integral member of it. informal

233. To hire somebody: To accept someone in a group or organization and make him an integral member of it. 


234. Turn down: Too refuse, not accept.


235. Team: Refers to a number of people who work to do something together as a group.


236. To clock in: To record the time you arrive at work on an automated sensored badging system. 


237. To clock out: To record the time when you leave work.

238. Talent: Natural abilities or qualities


239. Unemployment: The state of being unemployed.


240. Unionized: Not converted into ions.


241. Vacancy: A job that is available in a company and that people can apply for.


242. Vacation / holiday: The action of leaving something one previously occupied.


243. Workforce: The people employed or available for employment


244. Wage: An amount of money that is paid either weekly, fortnightly or monthly, to an employee for their work. It can also describe an hourly rate of pay.


245. Wage ceiling: A maximum wage, also often called a wage ceiling, is a legal limit on how much income an individual can earn. 


246. Work: Referred to an activity which involves a person to use physical or mental effort, usually for money in order to succeed.


247. Written communication: Communication by means of written symbols.


248. Performance: The action or process of carrying out or accomplishing an action, task, or function.


249. Pink slip: A document given to a person saying that they do not have a job any more. 


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