Glossary of HR Terms

Human Resource Terminologies and Definitions.

Table of Contents


Absenteeism is any failure to report for or remain at work as scheduled, regardless of the reason. 

Absenteeism Policy

An absenteeism policy is a rulebook for your workplace, laying down the dos and don’ts to keep those missed workdays in check. It covers everything from what counts as an excuse for missing work to what happens if you’re constantly late or absent.

Accommodation Policy

A guideline that captures an organisation’s stance on the provision of accommodations, requests, and confidentiality measures for employees with disabilities or specific needs to ensure they can perform their job duties effectively. 


The process of attracting, sourcing, and hiring new employees to fill vacant positions within a company. It involves activities such as creating job postings, conducting interviews, evaluating candidates, and extending job offers with SeamlessHR’s recruitment management system – SeamlessHiring. 

Active Listening

The skill of fully concentrating on, understanding, responding to, and remembering what is being said during interactions with employees or colleagues. It involves not only hearing the words but also grasping the underlying emotions and intentions behind them.

Affirmative Action

Proactive measures aimed at promoting equal opportunities in recruitment, hiring, promotion, and training. The goal is to address historical discrimination and systemic barriers by actively seeking out and providing opportunities to those who have been historically marginalised or disadvantaged. 

Agile Performance Management 

A modern approach to managing employee performance that emphasises flexibility, collaboration, and continuous feedback. Instead of rigid annual reviews, Agile Performance Management involves setting short-term goals, providing regular check-ins and feedback, and adjusting goals and priorities as needed to adapt to changing circumstances.

Applicant Tracking System (ATS)

A software for recruiters and employers, used to streamline and manage the entire hiring process, from posting job listings to screening resumes, scheduling interviews, and even managing candidate communication. 


A formal assessment of an employee’s job performance over a specific period. It involves evaluating the employee’s achievements, strengths, areas for improvement, and overall contribution to the organisation.


A structured training program where individuals, often new hires or those transitioning to new roles, learn specific skills and knowledge related to their job under the guidance of experienced mentors or trainers. 


A method of resolving disputes between employees and employers outside of the court system. In this process, a neutral third party, known as an arbitrator, hears both sides of the dispute and makes a final, binding decision. 

Assessment Center

A human resource management tool to holistically assess an individual’s competencies for role and organisational fitment and gauge developmental needs.

At-Will Employment

Employers’ legal right to terminate employees for any reason outside of federal and state law protections.

Benefits Administration

The process of determining and managing the benefits offered to a company’s employees. 


The process of comparing an organisation’s practices, processes, and performance metrics with those of other companies or industry standards to identify areas for improvement and best practices.

Bereavement Leave

A compassionate paid leave policy that allows employees to take time off from work to grieve and attend to matters related to the death of a close family member or loved one. The specific conditions, duration, and eligibility for bereavement leave can vary between companies and may be outlined in the company’s employee handbook or HR policies.

Behavioral Interview

A technique that assesses a candidate’s ability to meet the job requirements based on their previous experience. The technique is based on the idea that past performance is the best indicator of future performance.


A structured collection of personal and professional information about an individual, typically used for recruitment and selection purposes. It includes details such as educational background, work experience, skills, achievements, hobbies, and other relevant information that helps employers assess a candidate’s suitability for a particular role. 


An additional payment or reward given to employees beyond their regular salary or wages. Bonuses are typically provided as a recognition of exceptional performance, achieving specific goals, or as an incentive to motivate employees. Examples are cash bonuses, profit-sharing bonuses, performance bonuses, or non-monetary rewards like extra vacation days or gift cards.

Cafeteria Plan

A flexible benefit plan that allows employees to choose from a menu of different benefits, typically including health insurance, retirement savings plans, life insurance, and other perks. 

Career Development

A series of initiatives aimed at helping employees enhance their skills, knowledge, and experiences to achieve their career goals within the organisation. It’s about supporting employees in their professional growth and advancement.

Casual Employment: A type of employment arrangement where an employee is hired on a temporary and as-needed basis, typically without a fixed schedule or long-term commitment from either the employer or the employee.


A formal recognition or credentials, through successful completion of an accredited certification program or examination. Certifications validate an individual’s expertise, knowledge, and skills in specific areas of HR practice.


COBRA, which stands for the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, is a law that provides certain employees and their families the option to continue their group health insurance coverage for a limited period after certain qualifying events that would otherwise result in loss of coverage.

Collective Bargaining

The negotiation process between employers and labour unions, or groups of employees, to reach agreements on various aspects of employment conditions, such as wages, benefits, working hours, and working conditions.


The total rewards, including both monetary and non-monetary benefits, provided to employees in exchange for their work and contribution to the organisation.

Compensation Package

The sum of all the benefits and financial rewards that employees receive in exchange for their work and contribution to an organisation. It encompasses various elements designed to attract, retain, motivate, and reward employees for their efforts.

Competency-Based Management

An approach that focuses on identifying and developing the specific skills, knowledge, abilities, and behaviors (competencies) required for successful job performance within an organisation.

Conflict Resolution

The management and resolution of disputes, disagreements, or conflicts that arise in the workplace among employees, between employees and managers, or between different departments or teams. 

Contract Labour

The practice of hiring individuals or workers on a contractual basis to perform specific tasks, projects, or services for a predetermined period of time. These individuals, often referred to as independent contractors, freelancers, or consultants, are not considered regular employees of the company and typically work for a set duration or until the completion of a project.

Corporate Culture

Collective values, beliefs, attitudes, norms, and behaviours that characterise an organisation and shape its work environment, interactions, and practices. It encompasses the shared identity and personality of the organisation, influencing how employees perceive and experience their workplace and guiding their actions and decisions.

Cost Per Hire

Cost Per Hire (CPH) is a metric used to calculate the total cost incurred by an organisation to fill a vacant position with a new employee. It is an essential measure for evaluating the efficiency and effectiveness of the recruitment and hiring process.


Training employees to perform tasks or duties outside of their primary roles or areas of expertise. The goal of cross-training is to develop a versatile and adaptable workforce that can handle multiple responsibilities and fill in for colleagues when needed.

Cultural Competence

The ability of HR professionals and an organisation as a whole to effectively navigate and manage diversity and inclusion in the workplace. It involves understanding, respecting, and valuing the cultural differences, backgrounds, and perspectives of employees, candidates, and stakeholders.

Cultural Fit

The alignment between an individual’s values, beliefs, work style, and personality traits, and the organisational culture of a company. It entails assessing whether a candidate’s attitudes, behaviours, and work ethic match the values, norms, and expectations of the organisation.

Cultural Intelligence

An individual’s ability to understand and effectively navigate cultural differences in diverse work environments. It involves being aware of one’s own cultural perspectives and biases, as well as having the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to interact respectfully and effectively with people from different cultural backgrounds.


A process of tailoring HR practices, policies, programs, and initiatives to suit the unique needs, goals, and culture of an organisation. It involves adapting standard HR processes to align with the specific requirements and circumstances of the company, its industry, and its workforce.


A process of assigning authority, responsibility, and tasks to other individuals or teams within the organisation. It involves empowering employees to take on specific roles or tasks, granting them the necessary decision-making authority and autonomy to carry out their assigned responsibilities effectively.


An involuntary downward movement of an employee from a higher-level position to a lower-level position within the organisation’s hierarchy. It typically involves a reduction in job responsibilities, authority, and/or compensation.


Unfair treatment or negative actions taken against individuals or groups based on protected characteristics such as race, gender, age, religion, disability, or nationality. Discrimination is illegal in the workplace under various employment laws.


The presence of individuals from a wide range of backgrounds, cultures, perspectives, and experiences within an organisation. Diversity encompasses factors such as race, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, and socio-economic status.

Diversity and Inclusion

An organisation’s efforts to create a workplace environment that values and respects individuals from diverse backgrounds, experiences, perspectives, and identities. It involves recognising, appreciating, and leveraging the unique contributions and talents of all employees, regardless of factors such as race, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, or socio-economic status.


The termination of an employee’s employment by the employer, typically due to poor performance, misconduct, violation of company policies, or economic reasons. Dismissal may also be referred to as termination or firing.


The process of reducing the size of a company’s workforce, typically as a cost-cutting measure or in response to changes in business needs. It involves eliminating jobs, positions, or departments within a workplace, often resulting in layoffs or involuntary terminations for affected employees.


The period during which an employee is not actively working or productive, often due to factors such as equipment failure, system downtime, or lack of available work. Downtime may result in reduced productivity and efficiency.

Due Diligence

A comprehensive process of investigating, evaluating, and verifying information related to potential employment-related matters, such as mergers and acquisitions, hiring decisions, and legal compliance.

Early Retirement

An option provided by an organisation for employees to voluntarily retire before reaching the standard retirement age or eligibility for full retirement benefits. Early retirement programs are typically offered as a way to manage workforce changes, reduce labor costs, or facilitate succession planning.

Employee Assistance Program (EAP)

A workplace program designed to support employees with personal or work-related issues that may impact their well-being, performance, or productivity. EAPs offer confidential counseling, referrals to resources, and support services to help employees address a variety of concerns.

Employee Benefits

Non-wage compensation provided to employees in addition to their salary, such as health insurance, retirement plans, paid time off, and wellness programs.

Employee Development

The process of investing in employees’ skills, knowledge, abilities, and competencies to enhance their performance, career growth, and overall potential within the organisation. 

Employee Engagement

The extent to which employees are committed to their work, feel motivated, and are emotionally invested in the success of the organisation, contributing to higher productivity, retention, and overall performance.

Employee Handbook

A comprehensive document that outlines the policies, procedures, rules, and expectations governing employee behavior and conduct within the organisation.

Employee Morale

An overall outlook, attitude, and satisfaction levels of employees within the workplace, which reflects their emotional well-being, motivation, and engagement towards their work, colleagues, and the organisation as a whole. 

Employee Onboarding

The process of integrating new employees into the organisation, providing them with the necessary tools, information, and support to become productive members of the team.

Employee Recognition

A process of acknowledging and appreciating employees for their contributions, achievements, and efforts in the workplace. It involves expressing gratitude and praise for individual or team accomplishments to reinforce positive behaviors, enhance morale, and foster a culture of appreciation and engagement within the organisation

Employee Referral Program

A structured initiative to encourage current employees to refer qualified candidates for job openings within the company.

Employee Relations

The management of the relationship between employees and the organisation, including addressing workplace conflicts, grievances, disciplinary actions, and fostering positive employee morale and satisfaction.

Employee Retention

Efforts and strategies to retain talented and valued employees for the long term. It involves creating a work environment that fosters employee satisfaction, engagement, loyalty, and commitment, thereby reducing turnover rates and retaining top talent.

Employee Satisfaction

Overall happiness, contentment, and fulfillment that employees experience in their jobs and within an organisation. It reflects the degree to which employees’ needs, expectations, and preferences are met by their work environment, job roles, relationships, and organisational culture.

Employee Turnover

The rate at which employees leave an organisation and are replaced by new hires, typically expressed as a percentage of the total workforce or within specific departments or roles.

Employment Contract

A legally binding agreement between an employer and an employee that outlines the terms and conditions of employment, including job duties, compensation, benefits, and termination clauses.

Employment Equity

A principle of ensuring fairness, equal opportunities, and representation for all individuals in the workplace, regardless of factors such as race, ethnicity, gender, age, disability, or other protected characteristics.

Employment Law

The body of laws, regulations, and legal principles that govern the employer-employee relationship and establish the rights and obligations of both parties in the workplace. Employment law covers a wide range of issues, including hiring practices, wages and hours, workplace safety, discrimination and harassment, benefits, termination, and employee rights.

Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO)

The principle that all individuals should have equal access to employment opportunities and be treated fairly and without discrimination based on protected characteristics such as race, gender, age, religion, disability, or nationality.

Exit Interview

A structured interview that is conducted with an employee who is leaving the organisation voluntarily or involuntarily, typically to gather feedback, insights, and information about their reasons for leaving and their overall experience with the company.


“Expat” refers to an expatriate, which is an individual who temporarily resides and works in a country other than their home country. Expats are typically employed by a company or organisation and relocated to another country to fulfill specific job roles or assignments.


The process of providing constructive criticism, suggestions, or praise to employees about their performance, behavior, or work-related activities. Feedback is essential for employee development, performance improvement, and goal attainment.

Flexible Working

A flexible work arrangement that allows employees to vary their work hours within a defined range, typically with core hours when all employees must be present. Flextime arrangements provide employees with greater control over their schedules to accommodate personal needs or preferences.

FMLA (Family and Medical Leave Act)

A federal law that provides eligible employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave for certain family and medical reasons, including the birth or adoption of a child, caring for a family member with a serious health condition, or the employee’s serious health condition.


A temporary, unpaid leave of absence granted to employees due to business slowdowns, economic downturns, or other reasons beyond their control. Employees on furlough typically retain their employment status but do not receive wages or benefits during the furlough period.


A legal process in which a portion of an employee’s wages is withheld by their employer to satisfy a debt owed to a third party, such as a creditor, government agency, or court order. Garnishments are typically ordered for reasons such as unpaid taxes, child support, alimony, student loans, or consumer debts.

Gender Pay Gap

The disparity in earnings between men and women in the workforce. It represents the difference in average or median earnings between male and female employees, usually expressed as a percentage of men’s earnings.


Objectives or targets set by individuals or teams within the organization to guide their efforts and performance. Goals in HR may include personal development goals, performance goals, or organisational objectives aligned with the company’s mission and strategy.

Graduate Recruitment

The process of recruiting and hiring recent graduates from universities or colleges to fill entry-level positions within the organisation. Graduate recruitment programs may include internships, trainee programs, or rotational assignments to develop talent and build a pipeline of future leaders.


A formal complaint or dispute raised by an employee regarding a workplace issue, such as unfair treatment, harassment, discrimination, or violation of employment rights. Grievance procedures outline the steps for employees to address and resolve their concerns within the organisation.

Grievance Procedure

A formal process established by an organisation to address and resolve workplace complaints or disputes raised by employees. It provides a structured framework for employees to voice their concerns, seek resolution, and receive fair treatment.

Gross Misconduct

Serious misconduct or behavior that is considered unacceptable and may result in immediate termination of employment without notice or severance pay. Examples of gross misconduct may include theft, fraud, violence, harassment, or serious breaches of company policy.

Group Benefits

Employee benefits provided to groups of employees rather than individuals, typically offered as part of a benefits package by the employer. Group benefits may include health insurance, dental insurance, life insurance, disability insurance, retirement plans, and wellness programs.


Unwelcome conduct based on protected characteristics such as race, gender, age, religion, disability, or sexual orientation, that creates a hostile or intimidating work environment for the affected individual. Harassment is prohibited by law and workplace policies.


The practice of proactively identifying, recruiting, and hiring top talent for key positions within an organisation, typically at the executive or senior management level. Headhunters, or executive recruiters, specialise in identifying qualified candidates who possess the specific skills, experience, and expertise sought by their clients.

Health and Safety Policy

HR initiatives and programs aimed at promoting employee health, safety, and well-being in the workplace. This includes implementing safety protocols, providing training on safety procedures, conducting risk assessments, and addressing health concerns.

Hiring Process

The series of steps involved in recruiting and selecting candidates to fill job vacancies within the organization. This process typically includes job posting, candidate sourcing, resume screening, interviewing, and job offers.

HR Analytics

A process of gathering, analysing, and interpreting data related to human resources functions and activities to make data-driven decisions and improve organisational performance. It involves using statistical methods, data mining techniques, and predictive modeling to extract insights from HR data and inform strategic HR initiatives.

HR Audit

A comprehensive review and evaluation of an organisation’s human resources policies, procedures, practices, and systems to ensure legal compliance, effectiveness, and alignment with business goals and objectives. It involves assessing HR functions and activities across various areas, identifying areas of strength and improvement, and implementing corrective actions as needed.

HR Metrics

The quantitative measures used to assess and analyse various aspects of human resources management, processes, and outcomes within an organisation. These metrics help HR professionals track performance, identify trends, make data-driven decisions, and measure the effectiveness of HR initiatives and programs.

Human Capital

The collective skills, knowledge, experience, and capabilities of the workforce within an organisation. Human capital is a valuable asset that contributes to the organisation’s productivity, innovation, and competitive advantage.

Human Resource Information System (HRIS)

Software used by HR departments to manage employee data, including payroll, benefits administration, time and attendance tracking, performance management, and compliance reporting. SeamlessHR HRIS is a good example. Click here to learn about HRIS.

Immigration Compliance

Adherence to laws, regulations, and procedures governing the employment of foreign nationals within a particular country. It involves ensuring that the organisation complies with immigration laws and regulations when hiring, managing, and retaining employees who are not citizens or permanent residents of the country in which they work.

Incentive Compensation

Additional compensation or rewards provided to employees based on their performance, achievements, or contributions to the organisation’s success. Incentive compensation may include bonuses, commissions, profit-sharing, or stock options.


The achievement of a work environment in which all individuals are treated fairly and respectfully, have equal access to opportunities and resources and contribute fully to the organisation’s success.


The process of introducing newly hired employees to the organisation, its culture, policies, procedures, and work environment. Induction programs aim to help new employees acclimate to their roles and become productive members of the team.

Industrial Relations

Management of the relationship between employers and employees, particularly within the context of labor unions, collective bargaining, and workplace negotiations. It encompasses the policies, practices, and processes aimed at promoting effective communication, cooperation, and conflict resolution between employers and employee representatives.


Deliberate refusal or failure by an employee to follow a lawful, reasonable, and direct order or instruction given by their supervisor, manager, or employer. It is a serious workplace misconduct that undermines authority, disrupts operations, and can lead to disciplinary action, including termination of employment.

Integrity Testing

Assessments or evaluations designed to measure a candidate’s honesty, reliability, and ethical behaviour. Integrity testing helps organisations screen candidates for integrity-related traits and reduce the risk of hiring individuals prone to dishonesty or unethical conduct.


A formal meeting between a job candidate and one or more representatives of the organisation to assess the candidate’s qualifications, skills, experience, and fit for the position. Interviews are a common step in the recruitment and selection process.

Job Analysis

The process of systematically gathering, documenting, and analysing information about a job’s duties, responsibilities, tasks, qualifications, and requirements. Job analysis helps HR professionals develop job descriptions, establish job classifications, and ensure alignment between job roles and organisational goals.

Job Description

A written document that outlines the duties, responsibilities, qualifications, skills, and requirements of a specific job role within an organisation. Job descriptions serve as a foundation for recruitment, performance evaluation, training, and other HR functions.

Job Evaluation

The process of assessing and determining the relative value or worth of different jobs within an organisation to establish a fair and equitable pay structure. Job evaluation methods may include job ranking, job classification, point factor analysis, or market pricing.

Job Satisfaction

The level of contentment, fulfillment, and happiness that employees experience in their jobs. Job satisfaction is influenced by factors such as work environment, job design, compensation, recognition, and opportunities for growth and advancement.

Job Shadowing

A learning strategy where an employee observes and learns from another employee by accompanying them during their workday. It provides an opportunity for the observer, often a new or junior employee, to gain insights into the responsibilities, tasks, and activities associated with a specific job role or department within the organisation.

Job Sharing

A flexible work arrangement in which two or more employees share the responsibilities and hours of a single full-time job. Job sharing allows employees to achieve better work-life balance while maintaining employment status and benefits eligibility.

Key Performance Indicator (KPI)

Metrics or quantifiable measures used to evaluate the performance of individuals, teams, or processes within an organisation. KPIs are typically aligned with organisational goals and objectives and help HR professionals track progress, identify areas for improvement, and make data-driven decisions.

Knowledge Management

A process of capturing, storing, sharing, and leveraging the collective knowledge, expertise, and experience of employees within an organisation. It involves implementing strategies, tools, and practices to facilitate the creation, sharing, and utilisation of knowledge to support organisational goals and objectives.

Labour Laws

Legal regulations and statutes that govern the relationship between employers, employees, and labor unions in the workplace. These laws establish rights, responsibilities, and obligations for both employers and employees and provide legal frameworks for various aspects of the employment relationship.

Labour Market

The supply of and demand for labor within a specific geographic area, industry, or profession. HR professionals monitor labour market trends to understand talent availability, competition for skilled workers, and compensation benchmarks.


The temporary or permanent termination of employment for reasons such as organisational restructuring, downsizing, or financial constraints. Layoffs typically result in the reduction of the workforce and may involve severance packages for affected employees.

Leadership Development

The process of identifying, nurturing, and developing leadership skills and capabilities among employees at all levels of the organisation. Leadership development programs aim to cultivate effective leaders who can inspire, motivate, and guide teams to achieve organisational goals.

Leave Management

The process of administering and overseeing employee absences from work, including vacation time, sick leave, personal leave, and other types of authorised time off. It involves establishing policies, procedures, and systems to track, approve, and manage employee leave requests while ensuring compliance with applicable laws, regulations, and company policies.

Leave of Absence

An approved period during which an employee is excused from work duties for reasons such as illness, injury, personal reasons, family responsibilities, or military service. Leaves of absence may be paid or unpaid, depending on company policies and applicable laws.

Learning & Development

The function within HR responsible for designing, delivering, and evaluating training and development programs to enhance employee skills, competencies, and performance. L&D initiatives aim to support employee growth, career advancement, and organisational success.

Maternity Leave

A type of leave granted to pregnant employees to allow them to take time off work before and after childbirth for medical recovery and bonding with their newborn child. Maternity leave policies vary by country and employer.


A voluntary dispute resolution process in which a neutral third party (mediator) facilitates communication and negotiation between parties in conflict to help them reach a mutually acceptable resolution without resorting to formal legal proceedings.

Mental Health First Aid

A training program designed to teach individuals how to recognise the signs and symptoms of mental health problems, provide initial assistance, and guide individuals to appropriate professional help and support. Similar to physical first aid, MHFA aims to equip people with the skills and knowledge to provide immediate support to someone experiencing a mental health crisis.


A professional relationship in which an experienced employee (mentor) provides guidance, support, and advice to a less experienced employee (mentee) to help them develop their skills, knowledge, and career.

Merit Pay

A compensation system in which employees receive salary increases or bonuses based on their performance, contributions, achievements, or merit. Merit pay is often used as a reward for high performers and to incentivise continued excellence.

Migrant Worker

An individual who moves from their home country to another country in search of employment opportunities. Migrant workers typically leave their home countries due to economic reasons, seeking better wages, job prospects, or living conditions in the destination country.

Minimum Wage

The lowest wage rate that employers are legally required to pay to employees for their work, as mandated by labor laws or regulations. Minimum wage rates are intended to ensure that workers receive fair compensation for their labour.


The process of energising, inspiring, and influencing employees to achieve their goals, perform at their best, and contribute effectively to organisational success. It involves understanding individual and collective needs, desires, and aspirations and implementing strategies to encourage desired behaviors and outcomes in the workplace.

Multigenerational Workforce

A workforce composed of employees from multiple generations, such as Baby Boomers, Generation X, Millennials, and Generation Z. HR professionals must understand the diverse needs, preferences, and communication styles of different generational cohorts to effectively manage and engage employees.

Needs Assessment

The process of identifying and evaluating the current and future needs, requirements, and priorities of an organisation or its employees. Needs assessments help HR professionals determine areas for improvement, development opportunities, and resource allocation.


The process of reaching a mutually acceptable agreement or resolution between parties with differing interests or objectives. In HR, negotiation may occur during collective bargaining with labor unions, contract negotiations with vendors, or resolving conflicts between employees.

Non-Compete Agreement

A contractual agreement in which an employee agrees not to engage in certain competitive activities, such as working for a competitor or starting a competing business, for a specified period of time and within a specific geographic area after leaving the employer. Non-compete agreements help protect employers’ interests and intellectual property.

Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA)

A legally binding contract that prohibits parties from disclosing confidential or proprietary information to third parties without authorisation. NDAs are commonly used in HR to protect sensitive information, such as trade secrets, customer data, and intellectual property.

Notice Period

The period of time required for an employee to provide advance notice to their employer before resigning from their position. Notice periods are typically outlined in employment contracts or company policies and may vary depending on the length of employment and position level.

Occupational Health and Safety (OHS)

The branch of HR concerned with promoting and maintaining safe and healthy work environments for employees. Occupational health and safety programs aim to prevent workplace injuries, illnesses, and accidents through risk assessment, hazard identification, training, and compliance with safety regulations.


The process of managing an employee’s departure from the organisation, including activities such as conducting exit interviews, collecting company property, revoking access to systems and facilities, and transitioning responsibilities to other employees or departments.


The process of integrating and orienting new employees into the organisation, providing them with the necessary information, tools, resources, and support to become productive members of the team. Onboarding typically includes orientation sessions, training, introductions to colleagues, and clarification of job expectations.

Organisational Behaviour

How individuals, groups, and structures within an organisation behave and interact with each other. It explores the impact of human behaviour on organisational effectiveness and performance, as well as the influence of organisational structures, culture, leadership, and processes on employee attitudes and behaviors.

Organisational Culture

The shared values, beliefs, norms, attitudes, and behaviors that characterise an organisation and shape its work environment, relationships, and decision-making processes. Organisational culture influences employee engagement, morale, performance, and retention.


Contracting or delegating certain functions, processes, or services to external vendors, third-party service providers, or specialised HR firms. This approach allows organisations to leverage the expertise, resources, and efficiencies of external partners to manage specific HR activities more effectively and efficiently.

Parental Leave

This is the time off from work that is granted to employees who become parents, typically following the birth or adoption of a child. This leave is designed to allow parents to bond with their new child, adjust to the demands of parenthood, and manage family responsibilities without the added stress of work obligations.

Payroll Administration

Calculating and disbursing employee wages, salaries, bonuses, and deductions. Payroll also involves withholding and remitting payroll taxes and other statutory deductions to government authorities.

Performance Appraisal

A systematic assessment of an employee’s job performance. This assessment provides feedback on their work-related behaviors and outcomes. The primary objective of performance appraisal is to evaluate an employee’s contributions to the organisation, identify areas for improvement, set goals for future performance, and provide developmental support.

Performance Improvement Plan (PIP)

A structured plan that is implemented to address and improve an employee’s performance when it falls below expectations or standards. The primary goal of a PIP is to provide the employee with clear feedback on areas needing improvement and to outline specific actions or steps to help them meet performance goals.

Performance Management

The process of setting performance expectations, evaluating employee performance, providing feedback, and identifying development opportunities to enhance individual and organisational effectiveness.

Personnel File

A comprehensive record that contains all relevant documents and information related to an employee’s employment history with a company. These files are typically considered confidential and sensitive documents.

Phased Retirement

A strategy that allows employees nearing retirement age to gradually reduce their work hours or responsibilities over a while, typically leading up to their eventual retirement. Instead of abruptly ending their careers, employees can transition into retirement gradually, which can benefit both the employer and the employee.

Pre-Employment Screening

The process of evaluating job applicants before they are hired. It involves various checks and assessments to verify the candidate’s qualifications, credentials, and suitability for the position and the organisation.

Probationary Period

A specified period of time during which a new employee’s performance and suitability for continued employment are evaluated. Probationary periods may vary in duration and typically precede the confirmation of permanent employment status.


Efficiency and effectiveness with which human resources are utilized within an organisation to achieve its goals and objectives. Productivity can be measured in various ways, including metrics such as output per employee, revenue per employee, and employee engagement levels.

Policies & Procedures

Formal guidelines, rules, and regulations that are established by an organisation to govern employee behaviour, decision-making, and actions in various areas such as attendance, conduct, compensation, benefits, and performance.

Professional Development

Activities and initiatives designed to enhance employee skills, knowledge, competencies, and capabilities to support career growth, advancement, and lifelong learning.


The advancement of an employee to a higher position. It typically involves an increase in responsibilities, authority, and often salary or benefits. Promotions can occur for various reasons, including exemplary performance, demonstrated leadership abilities, acquisition of new skills or qualifications, or to fill a vacant higher-level position.

Psychological Contract

The unwritten, implicit expectations, beliefs, and obligations that exist between employees and their employer. Unlike formal employment contracts that outline specific terms and conditions of employment (such as salary, benefits, and job duties), the psychological contract focuses on the perceived mutual obligations, promises, and expectations that shape the relationship between the employee and the organisation.

Quality of Work Life (QWL)

Overall satisfaction, well-being, and fulfillment that employees experience in their work environment. It encompasses factors such as job satisfaction, work-life balance, workplace culture, job security, and opportunities for growth and development. 


The acknowledgment and appreciation of employees’ contributions, achievements, and efforts in the workplace. Recognition programs and initiatives may include awards, incentives, praise, and public acknowledgment of accomplishments.


The process of attracting, sourcing, assessing, and hiring candidates to fill job vacancies within an organisation. Recruitment activities may include job postings, candidate screening, interviews, and selection.


The elimination or reduction of positions or job roles within an organization due to reasons such as restructuring, downsizing, or technological changes. Redundancy may result in employee layoffs, terminations, or reassignments.

Remote Work

A work arrangement in which employees perform their job duties from a location outside of the traditional office, such as their home, a co-working space, or another remote location. Remote work arrangements may be full-time, part-time, or occasional, facilitated by technology and communication tools.


The voluntary act of an employee formally notifying their employer that they intend to leave their job permanently. It is a formal process where the employee submits a resignation letter or communicates their decision to resign verbally to their supervisor or HR department.


The ability of an organisation to retain and keep employees engaged, satisfied, and motivated to stay with the company for an extended period. Retention strategies aim to reduce turnover rates and preserve institutional knowledge and talent.

Retirement Planning

This involves assisting employees in preparing for their retirement years. It involves providing resources, information, and support to help employees make informed decisions about their retirement savings, investments, and lifestyle choices.

Rewards and Recognition

The practices and initiatives implemented by an organisation to acknowledge and appreciate the contributions and achievements of its employees.

Safety Culture

The attitudes, beliefs, values, and behaviours regarding safety within the workplace. It encompasses the collective mindset and practices related to workplace safety among employees, managers, and leadership. 

Safety & Health

Promotion and maintenance of a safe and healthy work environment for employees. Safety and health initiatives aim to prevent workplace injuries, accidents, and illnesses through risk assessment, training, compliance with regulations, and workplace safety programs.

Salary Negotiation

The discussion and agreement on compensation between a job candidate and an employer. It typically occurs after a job offer has been extended but before it is accepted. 

Salary Structure

The framework or system used by an organisation to establish and administer salary levels and ranges for different job positions based on factors such as job responsibilities, market rates, and internal equity considerations.


The process of evaluating, assessing, and choosing candidates who best fit the requirements of a job vacancy within an organisation. Selection activities may include resume screening, interviews, assessments, and reference checks.

Severance Package

The compensation and benefits provided by an employer to an employee who is involuntarily terminated from their job. This package is typically offered to help ease the financial burden and transition period for the departing employee.

Sexual Harassment

Unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that creates a hostile or offensive work environment. 


This involves identifying, attracting, and engaging potential candidates for job vacancies. The primary goal of sourcing is to build a pipeline of qualified candidates who match the requirements of the job positions, ensuring a steady supply of talent for current and future hiring needs. 

Strategic Human Resource Management (SHRM)

The approach to managing human resources that aligns HR practices and initiatives with the strategic goals and objectives of the organisation. SHRM focuses on leveraging HR to contribute to organisational success and competitive advantage.

Stress Management

Practices and strategies put in place for employees to cope with, and mitigate workplace stress. This includes identifying and addressing sources of stress within the workplace environment, providing resources and support for employees to manage stress effectively, and promoting

Succession Planning

The process of identifying and developing internal talent to fill key leadership and critical roles within an organisation in the event of retirements, resignations, or promotions. Succession planning ensures continuity of leadership and minimises disruptions to business operations.

Talent Acquisition

The process of identifying, attracting, and hiring skilled candidates to fill job vacancies within an organisation. Talent acquisition encompasses activities such as sourcing, recruiting, interviewing, and selecting candidates.

Talent Management

Strategic process of attracting, developing, and retaining skilled employees. It involves various practices aimed at maximising the potential of employees and ensuring that the right talent is in the right place at the right time to meet business objectives.

Team Building

Activities, exercises, and initiatives designed to enhance cooperation, collaboration, and camaraderie among members of a team. The primary objective of team building is to improve communication, trust, and morale within the team, ultimately leading to increased productivity and effectiveness.


A work arrangement in which employees perform their job duties remotely from a location outside of the traditional office, typically using telecommunications technology such as computers, phones, and the internet.


The formal end of an employment relationship between an employer and an employee, either voluntarily or involuntarily. Termination may occur due to reasons such as resignation, layoff, dismissal, or retirement.

Time and Attendance Management

The tracking and management of employees’ work hours, including their attendance, breaks, leave, and overtime. This involves various tasks and processes to ensure accurate recording of employees’ time worked, adherence to company policies and labor laws, and efficient allocation of resources. Click here to learn more about time and attendance management.

Total Rewards

The comprehensive package of monetary and non-monetary benefits that employees receive in exchange for their work and contributions to the organisation. Total rewards may include base pay, bonuses, benefits, recognition, and opportunities for career advancement.

Training and Development 

Provision of opportunities for employees to acquire new skills, knowledge, and competencies to enhance their performance, career growth, and personal development within the organisation.

Unconscious Bias

Implicit biases or stereotypes that individuals hold about certain groups of people based on characteristics such as race, gender, age, or ethnicity, which can influence decision-making and behaviour in subtle ways.


A situation in which individuals are employed in jobs that are below their skill level, education, or experience, resulting in lower job satisfaction, reduced productivity, and underutilisation of human capital.

Unemployment Insurance

A government-administered program that provides temporary financial assistance to eligible individuals who are unemployed through no fault of their own. Unemployment insurance benefits are intended to help unemployed workers meet their basic needs while seeking new employment.


An organised group of employees who join together to collectively represent their interests, negotiate with employers on issues such as wages, benefits, and working conditions, and advocate for employee rights and workplace fairness.


An unfilled job position or job opening within an organisation for which recruitment efforts are underway to find a suitable candidate.

Values-Based Hiring

A recruitment approach where emphasis is placed on aligning a candidate’s values and beliefs with those of the workplace. Instead of solely focusing on skills and qualifications, Values-Based Hiring considers the candidate’s ethical principles, attitudes, and cultural fit with the company’s mission, vision, and core values.

Vendor Management

The process of overseeing and coordinating relationships with external vendors or third-party service providers who assist with various business functions. This can include recruitment agencies, background check providers, payroll processing companies, benefits administrators, training providers, and more.

Verification of Employment

The process of confirming and validating an individual’s employment history, including dates of employment, job titles, responsibilities, and salary, typically requested by prospective employers, financial institutions, or government agencies.

Virtual Onboarding

The process of integrating and orienting new employees into the organisation remotely using digital tools, technology, and virtual platforms, such as video conferencing, online training modules, and digital documents.

Voluntary Resignation

The act of an employee choosing to leave their job voluntarily, often for personal reasons, career advancement, or pursuit of other opportunities, without being terminated by the employer.


The practice of employees engaging in voluntary activities or initiatives within or outside the workplace, typically aimed at serving the community or supporting social causes.

Wellness Program

A set of initiatives and activities implemented to promote the overall health and well-being of its employees. These programs are designed to support employees in maintaining or improving their physical, mental, and emotional health, both inside and outside of the workplace.


The act of an employee reporting misconduct, unethical behaviour, or illegal activities within his/her workplace to authorities or higher management. This can include issues such as fraud, corruption, harassment, discrimination, safety violations, or other forms of wrongdoing. 

Workforce Planning

The strategic process of forecasting future workforce needs, analysing current workforce capabilities, and developing plans to ensure that the organisation has the right talent in the right place at the right time to achieve its business objectives.

Work-Life Balance

The equilibrium between work-related responsibilities and personal or non-work-related activities, interests, and commitments, allowing employees to effectively manage their time and energy to maintain physical, mental, and emotional well-being.

Worker Classification

The categorisation of individuals who perform work for a company based on their employment status and relationship with the organisation. This classification helps determine how workers are treated in terms of benefits, taxes, and legal protections.

Workplace Diversity

The presence of individuals from different backgrounds, demographics, cultures, and experiences within the workforce. Workplace diversity encompasses aspects such as race, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, and socioeconomic status.

Workplace Flexibility

The ability for employees to adjust their work schedules, locations, and arrangements to accommodate personal needs, family responsibilities, and individual preferences while still meeting job requirements and organisational goals.

Workplace Harassment 

Unwelcome or offensive behaviour, actions, comments, or conduct directed at an individual or group of individuals based on protected characteristics such as race, gender, age, religion, disability, or sexual orientation, which creates a hostile or intimidating work environment.

Workplace Health Promotion

Initiatives and programs implemented to support and enhance the health and well-being of employees. These initiatives aim to create a work environment that fosters physical, mental, and emotional wellness, ultimately leading to improved employee satisfaction, engagement, and productivity.

Workplace Investigation

The process of examining and addressing allegations or complaints of misconduct, discrimination, harassment, or other violations of company policies or laws within the workplace. These investigations are conducted to gather facts, assess the situation objectively, and determine appropriate actions to resolve the issue and prevent similar incidents in the future.

Workplace Safety

The practices, policies, and initiatives put in place to ensure the health, safety, and well-being of employees in the workplace. It involves identifying and mitigating potential hazards, promoting a culture of safety, and complying with relevant regulations and standards to prevent accidents, injuries, and illnesses.

Yield Ratio

The ratio of candidates who progress from one stage of the recruitment process to the next. It is calculated by dividing the number of candidates who successfully move to the next stage by the number of candidates who entered the previous stage.

Youth Employment

This refers to employment opportunities targeted at young individuals. Youth employment programs, initiatives, and policies aim to provide young people with job training, work experience, and career development opportunities to help them transition successfully into the workforce.

Zero-Hours Contract

A type of employment agreement where the employer is not obligated to provide a minimum number of hours of work to the employee, and the employee is not obligated to accept any work offered. Instead, the employee is typically paid only for the hours they actually work, and their work schedule may vary from week to week.