HR Glossary



Absenteeism is when an employee is repeatedly absent from work without prior intimation. Such a behaviour can be a result of habituation or merely casual attitude. Curbing absenteeism in the organization is a crucial part of an HR’s job.

Accrued Leaves

Companies often allocate certain number of leaves to their employees to be used in one year according to the benefits policy of a company. Accrued leaves are the accumulated leaves that are earned by an employee over the year but have been unused by them.

Annual Performance Review

Annual Performance Review is a meeting between an employee and their boss to discuss the employee’s performance over the past year. This meeting usually involves acknowledging achievements, setting new goals and mapping future plans for the employee.


An appraisal is a systematic assessment of an employee’s performance which involves future planning as well. Companies recognize good work in appraisal meetings by providing salary hikes or bonus to the employee.

Attendance Management System

Attendance management system precisely tracks employees’ work hours including clock-in and clock-out, break time, and leaves taken by the employee. It is usually HR who handle AMS to keep track of attendance that helps in accurate payroll processing.


Base Salary

Base salary is the fixed amount paid to an employee without adding any other forms of compensation such as bonus or benefits. It is typically calculated on a monthly or annual basis and is mentioned in the employment contract. Base salary can depend on factors such as qualifications or industry standards.

Bereavement Leave

Bereavement leave is a leave granted to an employee to grieve the death of a close family member or friend. It is meant to give some time off to the employee to cope up with the loss of someone close.

Blue-Collar Worker

Blue collar employees are the employees who engage in manual labour and use their physical abilities. Such employment is often found in industries such as automotive, manufacturing, construction, or maintenance.


Bonus is a reward given to an employee for their impressive performance in the form of monetary compensation. Such compensations are above and beyond the regular salary of an employee. Giving bonus is a way of appreciating employees and keeping them motivated.

Buddy System

Buddy system is a technique where new employees are paired with an experienced employee to guide them through the first few weeks or months in the company. It involves sharing information and answering questions to ensure smooth transition of an employee in the organization.


Casual Leave

Casual leave is a type of paid leave granted to employees during unforeseen circumstances. It is mostly used to cater to personal matters for situations that arise without prior intimation.


Compensation refers to all monetary and non-monetary rewards received by an employee in return of their services. It includes salary, bonus, additional benefits, appraisals, insurance, and other perks.


C-Suite is a cumulative term used to define all highest level decision-makers in an organization. Their job titles usually start with the word ‘chief’ such as in Chief Executive Officer, Chief Operating Officer, Chief Technology Officer, Chief Marketing Officer, Chief Human Resources Officer.

Cost-to-Company (CTC)

Cost-to-Company symbolizes the total annual expenditure that an organization does on an employee. It includes not only a basic salary but also allowances, bonuses, insurance, fund contributions and other expenses. CTC serves as a crucial factor in both job seekers and employee compensation.

Curriculum Vitae (CV)

A CV stands for curriculum vitae, a detailed document that presents an individual’s academic history as well as work experience. It is an overview of an individual’s qualifications, skills and accomplishments.


Data Breach

A data breach refers to a data threat by someone, such as names or passwords. This harms both the company and its employees. To prevent breaches, companies need to use robust security systems.


Decentralization means the distribution of decision-making power from a single governing body to multiple units or individuals. This increases the engagement of employees and empowers them. The company becomes more creative and flexible.


Deductions are the amount of money subtracted from an employee’s gross salary before their total payment. It covers taxes, insurance, premiums, and other benefits. This depends on individual circumstances and policies.


Delayering in the corporate field refers to removing different layers of management to ease decision-making. It improves efficiency and communication.


Downsizing is a strategic decision to reduce the workforce to improve efficiency, reduce costs, and adapt to company changes. It can hurts employee morale and productivity.


Employee Benefits

Employee benefits refer to the perks and incentives provided to employees in addition to their basic salary. This includes health insurance, paid time off, retirements and more. Benefits help in retaining top talent and boost employee morale.

Employee Referral

Employee referrals are hiring strategy initiatives taken by companies in which current employees can recommend qualified candidates for open positions within the company. This approach helped the company find qualified candidates and can be successful in the near future.

Employee Self-Service (ESS)

Employee self-service (ESS) is a system that helps employees access and manage information. This information can be work-related or personal. It also manages the HR process, decreases administrative burdens, and increases employee satisfaction.

Exit Interview

An exit interview is a conversation between an employee and an employee who is going to leave the company. It helps to get valuable insights that help identify areas for improvement, increase employee satisfaction, identify potential issues and retain employees.


An expatriate is an individual who stays in a country other than their home country for work or other reasons for specific period of time. Expatriates, also known as expats, often benefit a company by helping it expand internationally and succeed.


Financial Incentive

A financial incentive is a monetary reward offered to employees to encourage their actions or behavior. These can be in the form of bonus, profit, or stock. This is often used to encourage employees and achieve high performance. attracts and retains employees.

Fixed Pay

A fixed pay is a fixed amount or salary that an employer pays to employees on a regular basis, either monthly or annually. Fixed pay helps employees achieve financial stability.

Floating Holiday

A floating holiday is a paid leave that an employee can take according to their choice of holiday. It is in addition to vacation days and sick leave. This holiday can be used to celebrate personal holidays, attend events and take a break when needed.

Form 16A

Form 16A is a tax certificate issued to employees who receive income from other resources, such as rent or interest. These certificates are issued by employers to employees. It is used for tax deductions at TDS, not for salary.

Fringe Benefits

Fringe benefits are non-monetary forms of benefits provided to employees by employers other than salary and benefits. These can be in the form of retirement plans, paid leave, bonuses, and more. Companies offer incentives to attract top talent and boost employee morale.



Gainsharing is an incentive plan based on performance to improve efficiency, productivity and overall performance. This is in the form of an incentive bonus. When employees achieve their goals, companies give them this bonus.

Gap Analysis

Gap analysis is a process that helps companies identify skills, knowledge and areas of development to fill the gap between their current state and the state they desire. It helps companies achieve their goals. This information gap analysis can be used to develop training and development programs for employees.

Goal Setting

Goal setting is an outcome that an organization wants to achieve in a specific time frame. It includes progress tracking, effective strategies, task breakdown, their implementation, and continuous improvement.


Gratuity is the benefit decided by the law provided for employees by employers. These benefits are provided after five years of service upon retirement, resignation, and death.

Gross Salary

Gross salary is the total amount of salary employee gets with benefits like bonus by an employer. Its full amount of money an employer agrees to pay.


Harvard Model

Harvard Model is strategic planning made by Harvard to manage human resources. It includes HR policies and practices.


Headhunter are professionals hired to recruit qualified candidates. Actively look for skilled candidates for job opportunities.

House Rent Allowance (HRA)

HRA is an allowance provided by the employer for the employee to cover their housing-related costs in rented accommodation.

Human Resource Information System (HRIS)

HRIS is a database system that manages and automates human resource processes such as payroll, time, leave, and attendance. It manages HR operations, which further increases efficiency and productivity.

Human Resource Management System (HRMS)

An HRMS is a cloud-based SaaS platform used to streamline HR processes. It includes employee management, hiring, onboarding, payroll, timesheets, and attendance.



Incentives are rewards given to employees for their great work and behavior. Incentives can be of different types: financial, non-financial, performance-based, employee-based, team-based, and many more.

Individual Development Plan (IDP)

Individual development plan are strategic goals set by employers and their managers for employee skill development and growth. This goal-setting helps align employees ambitions with the company’s vision.


Induction is also called the onboarding process, in which new employees are welcomed into the organization. Includes programs like job role description, introduction, training and mentorship.


An internship is work experience provided by companies to students or graduates in a particular field. An internship acts as a connecting bridge between academic and real-world learning.

Involuntary Termination

Involuntary termination refers to employees being terminated by their employer without their consent. It can be due to various reasons, like restructuring the company, misconduct, etc.


Job Board

A job board is a platform that connects job seekers with employers. Employers can post job postings, search for qualified candidates and simplify the recruitment process. It also enhances employment outcomes.

Job Description

A job description is the outline of qualifications and skills for a specific position in a company. To attract a suitable or qualified candidate, it requires a well-crafted job description. It includes a job description, the qualifications required and additional requirements.

Job Satisfaction or Dissatisfaction

Job satisfaction and dissatisfaction are employees experiences or how they feel about their job. Job satisfaction comes from a positive work environment, equality and opportunities.

Job Title

Job titles define the job role as a position in an organization. This is further categorized by broder fields like engineering, finance, or marketing, and they can vary from small positions to senior management positions.

Joint Employment

Joint employment refers to situations where two employees share responsibilities for other employees work. This condition occurs when two companies collaborate.


Knowledge Management

Knowledge management is a field that focuses on organizing, gaining, applying and sharing knowledge within an organization. It enhances the overall performance and improves decision-making.

Knowledge-Based Pay

Knowledge-based pay (KBP) is a system in which employees are paid according to their qualifications, skills, experience and knowledge. Every time an employee learns a new skill or does a new certification course, they can earn more money, which benefits both employees and the company.

Key Performance Indicators (KPI)

KPI stands for key performance indicator, which is a measurable value that demonstrates organization growth. This can be used to find areas for improvement, set clear goals, and meet expectations.

Key Responsibility Areas (KRA)

These are key result areas in which a particular department contributes to achieving organizational goals or vision. This provides a clear objective and allows employees to align their focus with the goal.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSA)

KSA are aspects that are needed in an individual for a specific job role. This qualification characteristic is used to identify whether the candidate is qualified for the job or not.


Lateral Hiring

Lateral hiring is when professionals are hired from other companies to fill specific job roles. This brings in expert and skilled candidates.


A layoff refers to the termination of the employment contract of a group of employees. This is also called workforce reduction or downsizing. Employees are terminated temporarily or permanently due to economic difficulties or restructuring.

Learning Management System (LMS)

A leave management system is a cloud-based platform used to track, administer and manage employee leave. This simplifies the leave-taking and tracking process.

Leave Balance

Leave balance is the term used when employees have a certain number of leaves for a certain period. This could include paid leave, unpaid leave, and casual leave amongst others.

Leave Policy

Leave policy is the set of guidelines for leave that an employee can take from work. The policy clearly outlines the number and types of leave assigned to employees and the procedure for applying for the same.


Management by Objectives (MBO)

Management by Objective (MBO) is a goal-oriented approach in which goals are defined and employees’ performance is evaluated based on their moves towards the objective.

Management Styles

Management styles are strategies used by managers to navigate their employees. In the autocratic style, decisions are taken by managers while in the democratic style, decisions are taken equally with team members.

Maternity Leave

Maternity leave is a paid leave granted to female employees before and after giving birth. Such leaves are meant for female employees to recover from childbirth and bond with their newborns.

Menstrual Leave

Menstrual leave is a type of leave granted to female employees experiencing health issues related to menstruation. Such leaves are meant to acknowledge the impact of menstruation on the productivity of female employees and support them.

Minimum Wage

The minimum wage is the least amount of money set by law, paid by employers to employees. This can vary based on location and designation.


National Pension Scheme (NPS)

The National Pension Scheme is a government-run scheme where employees deposit a small share of their salary during their working years which is invested in various avenues. Employees then receive these funds as pension post-retirement.

Net Pay

Net pay is the total salary paid to the employee with legal deductions such as income tax and other mandatory deductions.

Non-Compete Agreement

A non-compete agreement is signed between the employer and an employee, which prevents the employee from working with competitors or starting a competing business for a particular period after quitting the job.

Non-Disclosure Agreement

A non-disclosure agreement is an agreement made between two parties to prevent the other party from leaking confidential information.

Notice Period

A notice period is the duration of time an employee serves before the termination of the employment contract.


Offer Letter

An offer letter is an official written document provided to candidates after being selected for a particular position. It includes basic details such as salary structure, reporting managers, and roles and responsibilities.


Onboarding is the process of introducing a newly hired employee to the organization. It includes orientation, training, defining roles and responsibilities, familiarizing with the organization’s culture, and setting job expectations. It is one of the core HR practices and is vital to make a new employee feel welcomed and informed and ensure a smooth transition.

Organization Tree

The organization tree represents the structure of the organization. It is the chain of command, which shows who works under whom.


Outsourcing is a strategic business practice any company does in which they hire a third party to perform tasks. It is often done to reduce costs or to hire skilled professionals to provide overtime pay.


Overtime is the extra hours worked by employees other than their work hours. Usually, employees are paid for them.



Payroll is the process of managing and compensating employees. It can be done through direct check or deposit.

Performance Improvement Plan (PIP)

A performance improvement plan is the process that helps employees improve their performance and meet their employers’ goals or objectives.

Performance Review

A performance review is the feedback given by managers to employees on their work performance.

Professional Tax (PT)

Professional tax is introduced by the state government on individual earnings from employment or other services.


Overtime is the extra hours worked by employees other than their work hours. Usually, employees are paid for them.


Qualitative Analysis

Quality analysis is a technique that gives a deeper understanding of any numerical or subjective data.

Quality Circles

Quality circles are groups of employees who volunteer to solve work-related problems.

Quality of Work Life

Quality work life (QoWL) describes the overall well-being of employees at a workplace.

Quarterly Appraisal

Quarterly appraisals offer a structured framework for regular performance reviews and feedback which are organized every three months.

Queen Bee Syndrome

Queen Bee Syndrome is an issue in which any authorized woman having power displays hostility towards their female colleagues and coworkers.



Recruitment is a way of identifying suitable candidates and hiring them for any specific role for the company.


A referral is a recommendation of someone who will be suitable for the particular job role or purpose by any employee who is already working in that organization.


Reimbursement is a procedure of getting money back for any expenses that you have made on behalf of the company.


A resume is a concise one or two-page document that highlights your impactful skills, experiences and relevant educational qualifications for a specific job.

Roles and Responsibilities

Role is the Position held that defines a team or organization, defining its function and purpose whereas responsibilities are specific tasks and certain duties are assigned to a role with specific expectations and accountability. 


Salary Structure

A salary structure is an organized framework based on employee designation and its market value. It consists of salary grades with corresponding pay ranges.

Skill Gap

A skills gap refers to the difference between the capabilities and attributes an employer requires for a job and the skills and qualifications that employees currently possess.

Software as a Service (SaaS)

Software as a Service (SaaS) is known cloud-based software delivery model. Using the internet we can access and use it rather than purchasing software and installing it on our servers.


Staffing is the recurring process of identifying, recruiting, and developing a workforce within an organization.

Succession Planning

Succession planning is the process of proactive identification and preparation of individuals to fill significant roles when they become vacant while ensuring smooth transitions and business continuity.


Talent Acquisition

Talent Acquisition is a process of identifying, attracting and hiring the best candidate who can fulfil the organization’s needs.

Tax Deduction at Source (TDS)

Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) is a procedure in which income tax is withheld directly from certain payments you receive such as salary, rent, and professional expenses.

Taxable Income

Taxable income is the portion of your total income (wages, investments, etc.) that is taxable to the government.

Termination Letter

A termination letter is a formal document to the employee from their employer notifying them about their dismissal with its reason and particular date including the details of the termination pay if any.


Turnover refers to the total amount of sales you make over a set period.



Underemployment is a situation that appears when people work fewer hours than the decided time, or in jobs below their skills and qualifications, leading to improper utilization of their capabilities and often insufficient salaries.

Unilateral Change

A unilateral change is a modification to a legal document made by only one party, without the consent or negotiation of the other party.

Unpaid Leave

When an employee takes leave from work without receiving regular wages for any reason is considered unpaid leave.


Upskilling is a process of adopting new skills and knowledge which is essential to remain relevant as well as competitive in a rapidly changing market.

Upward Mobility

Upward mobility is the movement of individuals or groups from a lower socioeconomic position to a higher one.


Variable Pay

Variable pay is a component of your income that may differ based on your performance or the company’s profits. It is different from your fixed salary, which remains constant based of individual or team performance.

Virtual Meeting

A virtual meeting is a digital conference where individuals connect via the Internet in video or audio calls. These meetings are often organised in workplace for employees to connect remotely and collaborate to discuss or complete tasks.

Vision Statement

A vision statement describes your future goals for the long term. It works like a roadmap towards your goals and inspires you to reach your targets.



Walk-in word usually refers to interviews where no appointments are scheduled with individual Interviewees. They visit the company with their resumes.

White-Collar Worker

White-collar workers are used to be in administrative, managerial, or professional positions. Their jobs have core skills such as handling information, problem-solving, effective communication, and critical thinking.


Workforce refers to the group of individuals who work in any organization or company. They are the source of motivation behind all successful operations, goods or services, and products.

Workforce Management

Workforce management involves the optimization of resources, providing them with work strategies, tracking their performances and ensuring to achieve goals.

Work-Life Balance

Work-life balance is the ability to manage your time between your personal and professional life and achieving this involves prioritizing tasks and time management.
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