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Glossary of Terms

There are many terms and pieces of commercial jargon used on the Money Stuff! website.  Look up any thing you don't understand by clicking on the letter it starts with.

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A

Absenteeism is when an employee constantly or continuously fails to attend work as scheduled. In particular, when their absence forms a pattern which suggests that the employee is dissatisfied with their work or that their absence could have been avoided. Absenteeism can be considered grounds for dismissal.

Accelerator is a special circuit board that usually plugs into an expansion slot to make a computer work faster. An example is a graphics accelerator that will speed up the time it takes to display images on the monitor.

Acceptable quality is one of the consumer guarantees that apply to goods. It means goods must be fit for their intended purpose, acceptable in appearance and finish, free from defects, safe and durable.

Adult employees refer to the majority of awards and agreements stipulating an age at which all employees must be paid the full adult rate of pay. Typically, this is 21 years of age but can be younger under some awards

Allowances are additional payments made to employees for undertaking certain tasks, possessing a skill, using their own tools or performing work under adverse conditions. Types of allowances include disability allowances, height allowance, dirt or danger money, qualification and supervisory allowances.

Annual holidays refers to when full-time employees are entitled to four weeks of paid annual leave and part-time employees to a pro-rata amount. Certain shift workers are entitled to five weeks of paid annual leave.

Apprentice is a person (often a young person) who works for another under an obligation to learn a trade. Some awards have provisions for adult apprentices.

Apprenticeship is a form of on-the-job training where an apprentice is under contract to an employer to learn all aspects of a trade. Apprenticeships need to be registered by the NSW Department of Education and Training (DET).

Arbitration is a method of dispute settlement in which an independent third party considers the arguments of both sides and then makes a ruling which is binding on both parties in the dispute.

Australian Apprenticeship Centres are Centres which provide information, administration services and support to employers and apprentices. They assist with the signing of training contracts and also assess, approve and process the payment of Australian government employer incentives, scholarships, and income support payments to eligible Australian apprentices to assist them in the early years of their apprenticeship when their wages are generally at their lowest.

Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) are the peak organisation which represents unions in Australia and internationally. The ACTU was established in Melbourne in 1927 when the State Labor Councils and the then federal unions recognised the need for an organisation to represent the national interests of the unions. The state union body is called Unions NSW.

Award classifications refers to the groups identified in the relevant award according to the nature or complexity of tasks undertaken (eg Level 1 Customer Service Assistant and Level 4 Customer Service Manager).

Award conditions refers to the minimum, legally enforceable rates of pay and conditions of employment that must be provided for employees – as specified in the appropriate award, or the National Employment Standards.

Award modernisation involves the creation of a system of modern national awards to operate in conjunction with the new national industrial relations system. The process requires the review of all the multiple-employer national awards as well as many state awards operating in the national industrial system.

Award rate of pay is the lowest rate of pay that may legally be paid to an employee who is covered by an award. An award generally contains a number of rates that vary according to the age of the employee, their employment status (full-time, part-time or casual), and the employee's classification.

Awards are legal documents setting out minimum rates of pay and conditions of employment which apply to employees in a particular workplace, organisation, industry or occupation. They set out hours of employment, pay rates, penalty rates, loadings, allowances, leave entitlements, employment protection or casual work. The parties involved in the making of an award may include one or more employers, employer organisations and unions (who represent employees).

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B

Back pay refers to money that is owed by an employer to an employee as a result of underpayment of wages.

Base rate is the regular rate of pay which does not include any extra money for such things as overtime or meal allowances.

Base station (also called a cell site) is the tower and radio antenna, transmitter and other equipment that are used to communicate with mobile phones. A mobile network is made up of many base stations.

Better off overall test (BOOT test) is applied by Fair Work Australia and means that an enterprise agreement should offer terms and conditions of employment that are more beneficial to the employee than the appropriate award.

Bullying is an on-going situation, in which a person is abused, threatened or assaulted in circumstances relating to their work. This includes all forms or harassment, intimidation, physical threats or assaults and other intrusive behaviours.

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C

Call barring is a facility on a mobile phone that restricts outgoing or incoming calls, including whether the phone can make and receive international calls.

Call charges refers to the cost of individual calls made on a phone service.

Call plans are provided by mobile phone service providers and explain how phone calls and data will be charged and any additional charges that are payable. Each mobile phone service provider will have a selection of plans from which to choose.

Call credits is the amount of credit available to you for making calls on your mobile phone. It's normally used for pre-paid mobile phone services.

Career is an occupation selected and pursued as the chief area of employment during your working life. A career usually involves the development of skills and the aim of successive promotions.

Career Path refers to the way in which your career develops. The development depends on a variety of factors like your personal capabilities, skills, experience and the opportunities available for training and advancement.

Carers' leave - See: Personal carers' leave; Family leave

Carriage service providers are organisations that can sell access to a mobile phone network or internet service provider.

Carrier is the owner of a mobile phone infrastructure or network.

Casual employees are employees who work on an hourly or daily basis. They receive a loading on top of normal wages because they do not receive benefits such as paid sick leave and paid public holidays. Casual loading percentages may vary from award to award. Some awards limit the number of hours a casual employee may work each week.

Centrelink is a government agency delivering a range of Commonwealth services to the Australian community such as social security payments and employment assistance.

Certificate of service is a statement given to an employee at the end of a period of employment which states the commencement date, the date employment ceased and the nature of the employment.

Certified agreements are made directly between an employer and a group of employees, or between an employer and a union or unions representing employees.

Civil law is legal proceedings which are not criminal in nature including areas of the law such as contracts.

Collective bargaining is a method of negotiation to settle industrial disputes between employees and employers, which are negotiated by a union on behalf of employees.

Commission is the amount of money or percentage that is payable to an agent for their services.

Compliance plate is a metal plate that is permanently attached to and identifies a vehicle. The compliance plate will contain information on the make, model and the VIN (Vehicle identification number)/chassis number. The plate is usually fitted to the vehicle's engine bay.

Conciliation refers to one of the informal processes used by Fair Work Australia to facilitate the resolution of a grievance or a dispute between parties by helping them reach an agreement. Mediation is another information technique used.

Conditions of employment refer to physical work environments, agreed job tasks, financial rewards, and rules under which employees are engaged in an enterprise. Many of these are specified in the award.

Condition report is part of the residential tenancy agreement (lease) that records the condition of a place and any furniture that you are renting both at the start of the tenancy and again at the end of the tenancy. A copy of the condition report is kept by the landlord/agent and another by the tenant(s).

Constructive dismissal is when an employee has resigned but has done so under duress as a result of what the employer has done, said or failed to do. The conduct of the employer has compelled or unduly influenced the employee to leave employment.

Consumer guarantees are automatically provided under the Australian Consumer Law when you buy, lease or hire goods or services. There are nine guarantees that apply to goods, that is goods you buy: are of acceptable quality; are fit for their intended purpose; match the description, sample or demonstration model; comply with any express warranty; have clear title (free of debts, charges or mortgages) unless otherwise stated; come with a right to undisturbed possession (eg. no one can take back the goods); do not have any undisclosed charges or money owing on them; have repair facilities and spare parts reasonably available. There are three guarantees that apply to services, that is services you buy are: provided with due care and skill; fit for a particular purpose; supplied within a reasonable time (if no time set).

Contract of employment is an employment arrangement between an employer and employee which is enforceable by law. A contract of employment sets out the conditions and terms under which an employee accepts to work in a particular job – such as the wage or salary amount, number or spread of working hours and whether overtime is paid or allowed.

Coverage area refers to the geographical area that is covered by a mobile phone network.

Coverage maps are provided by mobile phone network providers and show you the geographical area that is covered by their network. These maps won't show black spots or shadows where your mobile phone will not receive a good signal.

Cover note refers to an immediate insurance cover that can be taken out over the phone. The cover will usually last from 10-30 days depending on the insurer. It gives you time to receive the insurance policy proposal in the mail and make the premium payment if you decide to take up the insurance.

Comprehensive car insurance covers damage to your car, damage to other people's cars and property as well as damage to your car caused by fire, or the car's theft.

Composite insurance policy is the type of insurance that licensed car dealers can take out to cover the cars that they have for sale. It's comprehensive insurance that will cover damage to the cars and other property in an accident and will cover you if you take a test drive. However, if you have an accident on a test drive that is your fault you will be asked to pay the excess.

Consumer credit insurance covers situations where you cannot meet your loan repayments due to unemployment, sickness, injury, disability or death. In these situations the insurance will cover some of the loan repayments.

Credit rating refers to any adverse listing that a credit reporting agency may have put on your file. An adverse listing can happen if you stop making your loan repayments and the lender reports this fact to the credit reporting agency.

CTP or Compulsory third party insurance must be paid before you can register a vehicle and provides compensation for other people injured by your vehicle when you or the person driving the vehicle is the driver at fault in an accident.

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D

Deductions are any amounts of money deducted from an employee's pay. Except by court order or a request by Centrelink, an employer may only make a deduction from an employee's pay if authorised in writing by the employee or the deduction is principally for the benefit of the employee.

Default rate of interest is interest that is charged on payments that are in arrears. In these situations you are charged additional interest on the outstanding arrears balance as well as the regular interest charges for the debt.

Default notice is the written notice that a lender will send a borrower, guarantor or mortgagor before they take legal action to recover a debt.

Debt is the total amount that you must pay back to a lender. It will depend on the amount you borrowed, the interest rate charged and the length of time that you borrowed the money.

Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) is a federal government department which formulates policy and provides information on employment, government assistance, jobs, careers, training, working conditions and Indigenous Employment Centres.

Depreciation is the decrease in value of a thing due to age, wear and tear, decay or decline.

Discrimination is when someone is not treated as fairly as someone else in a similar situation, or treated differently because they are different in some way.

Dismissal refers to when a contract of employment is ended by the employer. In most cases the employee is entitled to receive notice of dismissal and be paid for the period of notice and any pay and leave that is owing. See also: Unfair dismissal.

Double time is a penalty rate of pay set at twice the standard rate. Double time is usually only paid to employees who work more than two or three hours overtime or on Sundays.

Downsizing refers to when an organisation reduces the number of its employees, usually in response to financial hardship.

Dropped calls refer to calls that are lost due to a weak phone signal.

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E

Earnings are the total gross pay that is paid to a person for some period of work. Earnings include award wages, award supplements, as well as over-award payments.

Employee is a person working under the control or direction of another, under a contract of employment in return for a wage or salary but does not include a person working for their parents.

Employer is a person or organisation who employs workers under a contract of employment. Employers exercise control over their workers and are responsible for the payment of wages or salaries and for providing a safe working environment.

Employer association is an organisation of employers who share similar interests or areas of trade which aims to promote and represent their opinions and concerns. Employer associations often help negotiate awards.

Employment is a contract between an employer and employee in which the employee agrees to provide services under the direction and control of the employer in return for a salary or wage paid by the employer.

Employment status refers to whether an employee (a person who has a contract of employment) is working on a full­time, part-time or casual basis.

Encumbered means that a lender has registered an interest against an item such as a car when it has been used as security for a loan. The interest is an indication that the lender has taken the car as security for the loan.

Enforcement in relation to credit matters means that the lender can take certain actions against you to recover a debt. These actions may include repossession and sale of mortgaged goods and court action. Court action can result in the seizure and sale of your assets, you being forced into bankruptcy or your wages and/or bank account being garnisheed. Garnisheeing is where part of your salary or bank account balance is taken and sent to the lender.

Engagement is the period or occasion of employment for casual employees.

Enterprise agreements are agreements which are negotiated voluntarily between an employer and their employees or a union on behalf of those employees. They set out the minimum conditions of employment for employees engaged in particular types of work in one particular enterprise. Agreements may cover some or all of the employment conditions under the appropriate award. Enterprise agreements must comply with all industrial relations laws and, in general, employees should not be worse of under the agreement compared to awards.

Enterprise bargaining is the process which employers and employees use to negotiate a set of rules and conditions for their workplace and which results in an enterprise agreement. Another term to describe enterprise bargaining is 'workplace bargaining'.

Entitlements are the rights which an employee has access to at work such as holidays, sick leave and allowances.

Entry level skill refers to skills required to commence paid employment in a position/job.

Equal pay refers to the principle that men and women should receive the same payment when they perform the same work.

Extended warranty is a contractual warranty purchased through some sellers. It extends the warranty cover over a new item, or can create a warranty for a used item that is purchased from that seller. Read the policy carefully, as conditions will apply.

Exceptions are exclusions or conditions where you will not be covered by an insurance policy and any claim that you make will not be paid.

Excess is the amount of money that you will have to pay when making a claim on an insurance policy.

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F

Fair Work Australia (FWA) is the tribunal established to protect the workplace rights and interests of those workers, employers and associations that are regulated by the national workplace relations system.

Fair Work Information Statement sets out the basic workplace rights and entitlements for employees. All employers have an obligation to give each new employee a copy of the Fair Work Information Statement before, or as soon as possible after, the employee starts employment.

Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) works with employees, employers, contractors and the community to promote harmonious, productive and cooperative workplaces. The Fair Work Ombudsman investigates workplace complaints and enforce compliance with Australia's workplace laws.

Family leave refers to the right of workers to take a certain amount of their accrued sick leave each year to meet their family responsibilities. It is also known as personal carers' leave. A family member is defined as either a member of your household or a member of your immediate family and includes same sex partners.

Fit for the purpose refers to the ability of an item that you have purchased to do the job that you make known to the seller that it needs to do. It is one of the consumer guarantees.

Fixed term contract is a contract of employment under which employees are employed for a specified time. These employees generally accrue entitlements such as annual and sick leave on a pro rata basis.

Flagfall is a fee that mobile phone service providers can charge for each call that you make. It's an additional charge on top of the call charges.

Flat spots are areas in a mobile phone network where the signal is weak and the phone may not be able to work.

Flex time is a system of work which allows employees to start and finish work between a flexible range of agreed hours. They must work a set amount of hours each day or week. For example, an employee may be required to work eight hours a day, but may start work at any time between 7am and 9am and finish work eight hours later, between 3pm and 7pm.

Full-time employees are employees who generally work between 35 and 40 hours per week and receive full weekly wages and conditions for working the hours identified in the award. They receive all wages and conditions under the award. Other conditions include annual leave and long service leave.

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G

Garnishee refers to an automatic pay deduction on behalf of a third party. It usually results from a court order. Except by court order or a request by Centrelink, an employer may only make a deduction from an employee's pay if authorised in writing by the employee or the deduction is principally for the benefit of the employee.

Grievance procedure is a formal procedure developed for resolving issues or complaints, such as alleged harassment or discrimination.

Gross pay is the amount an employee has earned before their income tax and other deductions are subtracted from their pay.

Group certificate is a form which shows an employee's gross pay, net earnings, tax and other deductions which is given to employees by employers at the end of the financial year for taxation purposes.

Guarantor is a person that signs a guarantee with a lender and promises to repay a borrower's loan if the borrower can't or won't.

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H

Handset refers to a portable phone or a mobile phone.

Harassment refers to any unwanted or uninvited behaviour which is offensive, embarrassing, intimidating or humiliating. It is against the law for a person to be harassed because of their sex; pregnancy; race (including colour, nationality, descent, ethnic or religious background); marital status; disability; homosexuality; age; transgender or for their relationship to or association with a person of a particular sex, race, marital status etc. Harassment is a form of discrimination.

Hardware is the collective name for the physical components of a computer. Examples of hardware are the RAM (random access memory), hard drive and CPU (central processing unit).

Hourly rates of pay are specified in awards or agreements for each job classification as the lowest rate payable per hour. They may include allowances and loadings. Hourly rates vary for full-time and casual employees.

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I

Income is the money earned from work or business.

Income tax is a government tax charged on what a person earns from work each year. The amount of income tax paid is dependent on how much is earned and certain other entitlements and exemptions. See also: Tax

Industrial action is an organised disruptive act taken by a group of workers – such as a strike or stop-work meeting. 'Protected industrial action' is the term used for a legal strike in Australia. Under the law employees cannot be disadvantaged for being part of a protected action.

Industrial relations refers to the relationship between employers and employees.

Industry award is an award that covers all employees in a single industry.

Internet service providers (ISP) are organisations that sell you the right to use their computers to gain access to the Internet.

Insurance involves the payment of money (a premium) to cover loss or damage to specified items that may occur in certain circumstances.

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J

Job refers to the set of tasks that is allocated to an employee and that they are expected to carry out during their work day. The term is often extended to include the immediate physical or social work environment in which the tasks are performed.

Job classification refers to a system where jobs are grouped into categories which correspond with the amount of training, skill, competencies, knowledge or experience required to do them. Each job classification has a specific rate of pay related to it which is set out in awards and agreements.

Job description refers to a document which describes the purpose, expected activities and responsibilities of a particular job.

Job satisfaction refers to the extent to which employees are content with the work they do and the conditions which they work under.

Job sharing is when two people share a single job, and the wage of one person is split between them.

Junior employees are employees under 18 or 21 years of age. Some awards specify a separate pay scale for junior employees. This may be paid at a percentage of the adult rate, or a specific rate, depending on the age of the employee.

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L

Lease is a type of finance where the lender continues to own the item but the person leasing has possession of it for the term of the lease. At the end of the lease term the item is returned to the lender.

Leave without pay is a form of leave granted when an employer permits an employee to take time off work without pay, for a specified period.

Leave loading refers to a pay bonus when on annual leave.

Loadings are any payments made to an employee, over and above their normal award rate, to compensate them for some particular aspect of their job (eg shift loading) or for some aspect of their employment (eg remote geographic location).

Log of claims are a list of demands drawn up by both unions and employers as part of the negotiations for an award or enterprise agreement. It specifies what rates of pay, hours of work, leave and other entitlements that either the union or employer wants to see in the award or agreement.

Long service leave refers to paid leave due to an employee after working for an unbroken period of ten years with an employer. The employee receives two months paid leave after ten years service with one employer and one month paid leave for each additional five years service with that employer.

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M

Maternity leave refers to leave taken by women employees during or after pregnancy. The period of leave available is up to 52 weeks.

Meal allowance is an allowance paid to employees who work overtime to compensate them for the cost of a meal. The allowance, and the conditions under which it must be paid, are set out in the award.

Mediation is a process in which the parties to a dispute, with the assistance of a neutral third party (the mediator), identify the disputed issues, develop options, consider alternatives and try to reach an agreement.

Minimum mobile phone package costs do not include actual phone call costs. It only includes the cost of the handset (if one is included in the package), the initial connection fee and access charges for the term of the contract.

Minimum wage refers to the lowest amount which can legally be paid to an employee under an award or agreement or as set out under the national wage order.

Monthly access charge is the fixed amount that is charged by a mobile phone service provider to allow you to use the mobile phone network.

Mortgaged property is where property is security for a loan.

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N

National employment standards (NES) are set out in the Fair Work Act 2009 and comprise 10 minimum standards of employment for all employees in Australia, covering such things as leave entitlements and arrangements, working hours and notice of termination.

Negotiation refers to when two parties discuss what they want in order to reach an agreement.

Net pay is the amount of money an employee receives after income tax and other deductions have been taken out from weekly earnings. Also called 'take home pay'.

Network connection agreement is the contract that you enter with a mobile phone service provider to gain access to their phone network for a set period of time.

Network supported feature is a feature of a mobile phone that requires activation through a call plan. These features will incur a cost each time they are used.

No disadvantage test refers to a no enterprise agreement (including Australian Workplace Agreements) which can be approved by the Australian Industrial Relations Commission or the Industrial Relations Commission of NSW unless it can be shown that, taken as a whole, the employees involved would not be worse off under the agreement than they would have been under the award. In other words, that they are not disadvantaged.

Notice is a notification of the end of employment which comes from either an employer or employee.

Notice of Particulars Each used car sold by a licensed motor car trader (LMCT) must have a Notice of Particulars attached tot he windscreen telling you the make, model of the vehicle, the current price and odometer reading and the previous owner.

NSW Industrial Relations (NSW IR) is a NSW government agency which provides information and assistance to employers and employees about industrial relations in NSW. This information includes pay rates and other conditions of employment that operate in NSW and covers most types of work done in NSW.

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O

Occupation refers to the trade, skill, or job performed by an individual or group.

Occupational health and safety (OH&S) refers to the general area of concern in employment which covers the physiological and psychological well-being of persons engaged in work. Employers have a common law duty to take reasonable care to guard their employees' health and safety at work.

Odometer is a measuring instrument that records the distance travelled by a motor vehicle.

Off peak times refers to the least busy times in the day when mobile phone network or internet service providers may charge you less for using their services.

Operating system (OS) is software that is found in all computers. The most common is Windows 95/98. The OS is loaded into the RAM from the hard drive when you turn the computer on and it allows you to use the computer.

Ordinary hours are the hours set out in an award that an employee works each day or week that are paid at normal hourly rates. Most awards provide that full-time or weekly employees work between 38 or 40 ordinary hours a week.

Outworker is an employee who carries out work for a company or organisation away from its premises. An outworker has the general rights and entitlements of an employee under industrial laws.

Over-award payments are payments made in excess of the minimum rate set out by the award.

Overtime refers to work performed in addition to ordinary hours. Overtime work must be paid at the overtime rates of pay specified in awards.

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P

Paid rate is the actual rate of pay received by employees.

Parental leave refers to the entitlement of both male and female employees to take leave when their baby is born. See also Maternity Leave.

Part-time employees are employees who are engaged for a number of hours that are less than those for full-time employees in an award. Part-time workers generally receive the same entitlements and benefits of a full-time worker on a proportional basis.

Part-time work agreements (PTWAs) refers to formal written agreements between employers and employees to work part-time hours which differ from those in awards or enterprise agreements. PTWAs can override certain provisions that specifically relate to part-time work such as limitations on the number of people that can work part-time and the maximum and minimum hours for part-time work.

Pay refers to payment for work. The total amount earned is called gross pay and the total amount earnt minus deductions (eg tax) is called net pay. See also: Salary; Wage

Pay slip is a record of pay which an employer must provide to employees each time they are paid. The pay slip must contain details such as the name of the employer, the name of the employee, date when the payment was made, the amount of money paid before tax, the amount deducted for tax, the amount paid after tax and superannuation contributions.

Peak times refers to the busiest time in the day when mobile phone network and internet service providers may charge you more for using their services(compared to useage during off peak times).

Penalty rate is a higher rate of pay which compensates for work done outside usual hours such as late at night or on public holidays.

Peripherals are devices that attach to a computer and transfer information into or out of the computer. Examples are scanners, digital cameras and printers.

Personal carers' leave is paid leave for employees who are unable to attend work because of illness or injury. This leave also covers requirements to look after sick family members and compassionate leave.

Pixel is a dot making up part of an image on a computer monitor or on paper.

PPSR stands for the Personal Property Securities Register. It's a national register for recording security interests (eg: encumbrances or debts) in personal property (eg: motor vehicles) - replacing REVS.

Premium is the amount of money that you will need to pay to an insurance company in exchange for insurance cover. It's the cost of insurance.

Pro-rata is the calculation of entitlement for part-time employees on a proportional basis when compared to a full-time employee. It may also be used when a yearly entitlement is calculated for a period of employment less than a whole year.

Productivity is a ratio of the value of an enterprise's output of goods and services to the cost of the various resources used to achieve that output.

Profession refers to an occupation which requires knowledge gained through academic study, such as law, medicine or teaching.

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Q

Qualification is often used by employers to describe a training or education achievement, such as a degree, diploma or certificate. It also includes qualities or accomplishments which make a person suitable for a position.

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R

RAM or Random Access Memory is a computer's working memory. It is the area where information and software are stored and used when you use a computer.

Recharge cards are plastic cards that contain an amount of call credits that you can use up making mobile phone calls.

Redundancy occurs when the work performed by an employee is no longer necessary because their job is replaced by technology or the work is restructured making the position redundant. For a redundancy to apply the employer must have 15 or more employees.

Referee is a person who can provide details of your character, education, employment history and suitability for the job to a prospective employer. This person is usually required to be nominated as part of an application for a job.

Registered Training Organisation (RTO) are Organisations which provide training and have satisfied the national criteria for provision of services, and are registered by a state/territory training authority. For example, TAFE NSW is a registered training organisation.

Remuneration refers to money paid or a benefit given to a person in return for their services. Usually means a wage or salary but can also take the form of a special payment such as a bonus or a benefit.

Repossession is where a lender will take property that has been taken as security for a loan. This will generally happen when the borrower has stopped repaying the debt (making payments). The lender can sell the property and the money obtained from the sale used to repay or reduce the debt.

Residential tenancy agreement (or lease) is a legally binding agreement between the tenant(s) and the landlord(s). It sets out the rights and responsibilities of both the tenant and the landlord.

Resignation is when an employee tells their employer of their intention to leave their job and terminate their contract of employment. An employee is required to provide notice to their employer.

Restraint of trade refers to any action which damages or hinders in some way a person's opportunity to carry on a business, or a provision in a contract which restrains a former employee for working for a competing business. Restraints of trade are illegal unless the restraint is in writing and is reasonable.

Resume is a document which lists and summarises your career achievements and experiences. Also known as a 'curriculum vitae'.

Retirement is when a person stops working permanently or withdraws from their position, usually because of their age.

Retrenchment - See: Redundancy

REVS - See: PPSR

Right of entry refers to the legal right of union officials to enter business premises under certain conditions for purposes described in the Fair Work Act 2009.

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S

Sale contract is entered into every time you buy a good or a service.

Salary is a fixed regular payment for work or services, by the week, day, fortnight or month or individual job performed. See also: Pay; Wage

Security interest is a generic term for the property rights of a lender or creditor whose right to collect a debt is secured by the property. 

School-based apprenticeships allow senior high school students to commence an apprenticeship while they are still at school. NSW school students can start a part-time apprenticeship while enrolled in the Higher School Certificate (HSC) from the end of Year 10.

Self-employed refers to any person who operates their own business or professional practice, who does not employ labour, and who operates independently of other organisations.

Service increment is a wage adjustment given to employees based on their length of service in the business. This form of wage increase is increasingly being linked to skills and competencies rather than being automatically passed on to employees.

Severance pay refers to the final payment made to an employee when their employment is terminated. It includes amounts for accrued leave, leave loadings, and accrued pay for time already worked. In instances of redundancy, severance pay can also include redundancy pay.

Shareware refers to software that is offered on a trial basis and may be missing features of the retail version. If you decide to use it regularly then you are asked to send payment to the authors.

Shift allowance is an allowance paid for working a shift that is compensation for working during non-standard (day time) hours (eg afternoon shift, night shift or early morning shift).

Sick leave - See: Personal carers' leave

SIM stands for subscriber identity module. It's a smart card capable of storing and transferring information and is needed to allow a mobile phone to work.

Small business employer is an employer who employs less than 15 full-time equivalent employees, including full-time, part-time and casual employees.

Software are programs or series of instructions that tells the computer how to do certain things. Examples of software are games, the operating system, word processing and spreadsheet packages.

Spread of ordinary hours in an award defines when ordinary hours apply. For example, where a spread of ordinary hours is between 6.00am and 6.00pm Monday to Friday it means that an employee working within that timeframe is paid at the ordinary hourly rate of pay. Overtime or penalty payments apply for work undertaken outside that timeframe.

Stamp duty is a type of tax that is imposed on certain transactions.

Stand-by time is the amount of time that a battery can power a mobile phone that is switched on but is not being used to make or receive any calls.

Starter kits refer to the packages provided by mobile phone network providers that allow access to the mobile phone network. They are used when you pre-pay for the phone service.

Strike - See: Industrial action

Superannuation refers to the money put aside during your working life for use when you retire. An employer must contribute 9% of their employee's wages into a superannuation fund. Superannuation is an additional benefit on top of a wage or salary.

Superannuation guarantee refers to superannuation contributions that most Australian workers receive from their employers. The employer should contribute to a complying superannuation fund or a retirement savings account (RSA) for all their employees.

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Take home pay - See: Net pay

Talk time is the amount of time that a battery can power a mobile phone for calls before it needs recharging.

Tax is a compulsory financial charge imposed by governments on such things as income, goods and property for use in public spending and administration. Also known as taxation. See also: Income tax

Tax evasion is the illegal understatement of income to avoid paying tax. Also, the failure to pay taxes which are legally due to the government.

Tax return is a statement of an employee's income which is submitted to the Australian Taxation Office at the end of the financial year.

Tenancy is where a person (the tenant) lives in the house or flat of another person (the landlord) for a period of time in exchange for rent.

Termination refers to the act of ending an employee's employment for any reason.

Third-line forcing is where a business refuses to sell a product or service unless you also buy another product or service from a separate business.

Third party property car insurance covers you for any damage that your car causes to other people's cars and property but not any damage sustained to your car.

Third party, fire and theft car insurance covers damage that your car causes to other people's property but doesn't cover damage sustained to your car. It does cover the loss or damage to your car that is caused by theft or fire.

Time-and-a-half refers to one and a half times the ordinary hourly rate of pay.

Trade union is an organisation of employees, which acts collectively for mutual protection and assistance and is often concerned with wages and conditions of employment. Unions represent workers in dealings with employers and government. Many unions also offer extra services to their members such as advice about finances, access to health services, such as dental care, scholarships to help pay for school books or discount movie tickets. See also: Australian Council of Trade Unions.

Traineeship is a type of job that combines training and work. Trainees undertake on-the-job work (usually four days per week) as well as training provided by a college or other training provider (usually a day each week). See also: Apprenticeship, Australian Apprenticeships Centres, School-based apprenticeship.

Transfer of Tenants Form (Victoria) This form is available from the Residential Tenancies Bond Authority (RTBA) and must be completed each time the names of the tenants shown on the tenancy agreement change.

Transport Accident Charge (TAC) This is the compulsory third party insurance which is paid when you register a vehicle in Victoria. It provides compensation for other people injured by your vehicle when the driver is at fault.

Trial work refers to when an employee may be asked to work for a trial or probation period when offered a job. The employer must tell the employee how long the probation or trial period will be (it can only be for a maximum of three months) and the employee must be paid for any work they do.

Employers must pay for the cost of any necessary training and employees must be paid for any training they are required to do. See also: Unpaid trial work

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Unemployment is involuntarily and temporarily without a job, although able and willing to work.

Unemployed refers to the portion of the workforce who are able and willing to work but unable to find jobs.

Unemployment benefits refers to a regular social security payment for people who are registered with the Government as unemployed. The unemployment benefit helps with living and job seeking costs. Also known as the 'dole'.

Unfair dismissal is when an employee is dismissed in violation of their contract, award or the law. An unfairly dismissed employee has the right to seek compensation for lost earnings, and can take their claim to an industrial tribunal. Also known as 'wrongful dismissal'.

Union - See: Trade Union

Unpaid trial work is a common – and illegal – way of exploiting young people who are trying to gain work experience. Unpaid trial work should not be confused with school work experience programs. With formal work experience, clear boundaries are set as to when the work will start and finish and a nominal fee is usually paid.

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Vehicle Securities Register (VSR) This is a service provided by VicRoads that maintains information on cars. The VSR can tell you if there are any interests registered against them such as outstanding loans or debts.

VIN (vehicle identification number) is the number and accompanying letters or symbols that are affixed to a motor vehicle. This number will usually also be stamped on the compliance plate.

Vocational education and training refers to training or education which focuses on preparing students for a trade or commercial career.

Voluntary redundancy is when an organisation intends to lay off workers it can ask whether any employees are interested in resigning voluntarily and taking a lump-sum payment.

Voicemail is an automated answering system that plays a greeting and records incoming messages.

Voluntary Warranty (also called a manufacturer's warranty, express warranty or warranty against defects) is a voluntary promise made by a supplier or manufacturer about the goods or services. It does not replace any consumer guarantees. Some voluntary warranties are given unconditionally while others may be subject to time limits or conditions such as regular servicing. If the item develops problems during the warranty period you should take it back to the seller and depending on the nature of the problem and the terms and conditions of the warranty, you may be entitled to a repair, replacement or refund.

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Wage refers to the payment for work or services, by the week, day or by the individual job performed. See also: Salary

Wage rate is the rate of pay applicable to a particular job. The rate may vary according to the employee's age, level of skills, seniority or duties.

Work contract - See: Contract of employment

Work diary refers to an employee's own record of work-related events which may include details of starting and finishing times, any leave taken, pay received, supervisors and other colleagues, conversations, critical or unwanted incidents, work-related expenses and other significant workplace events.

WorkCover NSW is a NSW state government body responsible for workplace safety, injury management and workers' compensation program. Its primary objective is to work in partnership with the NSW community to achieve safe workplaces and effective return to work and security for injured workers.

Worker refers to a broad term describing an individual who works for wages or a salary and performs services or work for an employer.

Workers compensation refers to a payment from an employer to an employee for injuries or illness caused at work.

Workforce refers to the entire population available for work, either employed or unemployed.

Working conditions are the physical environment in which a person works, including the actual space, the quality of ventilation, heat, light and degree of safety.

Working from home is a flexible work arrangement in which an employee works at home or another remote location rather than travelling to a central office, and uses technology to communicate with other colleagues and supervisors. It may also be called telecommuting or e-commuting.

Working hours refers to the time an employee spends at paid work. Working hours can be regulated by awards and agreements which may outline the maximum number of hours to be worked each week, ordinary working hours, annual leave provisions, flexitime and rest breaks while at work.

Workplace refers to any place where people are employed or working.

Workplace Authority is a federal government agency which has responsibility for providing advice, assistance, information and education on workplace agreements made under the Workplace Relations Act 1996.

This agency will be replaced by Fair Work Australia from 1 January 2010.

Workplace bargaining - See: Enterprise bargaining

Workplace Ombudsman is a federal government agency which provides advice and assistance on workplace rights and responsibilities, seeks voluntary compliance, investigates complaints, conducts workplace audits and litigates breaches of workplace laws.

This agency will be replaced by Fair Work Australia from 1 January 2010.

Wrongful dismissal - See: Unfair dismissal

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Youth wage in most awards make provision for adult and junior wages. Minimum rates for the latter tend to be lower than those for adults. They are often differentiated for various age groups. See also: Junior employees

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