Glossary of HR Terms

Terms starting with Alphabet B

Background Check/Investigation: The process of verifying information supplied by applicants who are being considered for employment, including but not limited to contacting former employers, references, obtaining educational records and requesting criminal or consumer credit reports.

Back pay: Compensation for past wage and benefits losses caused by discriminatory employment practices or procedures. Lost wages include, e.g; overtime, incentive, pay, raises, bonuses economic loss includes compensatory damages.

Balanced scorecard: A popular strategic management concept developed in the early 1990’s by Drs. Robert Kaplan and David Norton. The balanced scorecard is a management and measurement system that enables organizations to clarify their vision and strategy and translate them into action. The goal of the balanced scorecard is to the business performance to organizational strategy by measuring results in four areas: financial performance, customer knowledge, internal business processes, and learning and growth.

Balance-sheet approach:  An approach to international compensation that provides international employees with a compensation package that equalizes cost differences between the international assignment and the same assignment in the home country of the individual or the corporation.

Balance-sheet equation: Assets=Liabilities+Stock holder’s equity.

Bargaining agreement/Collective bargaining agreement: It is a contract between an employer and union covering wages, hours, and other terms and conditions of employment for employees in the bargaining unit.

Bargaining unit: All employees eligible to select a single union to represent and bargain collectively for them.

Barrier analysis: The process of reviewing an organization’s policies and procedures to identify and eliminate impediments in recruitment, selection, transfer, or promotion of protected class individuals throughout the organization.

Base pay: The basic compensation an employee receives, usually as a wage or salary.

Behavior modification:  A conscious attempt to change or eliminate an individual’s  undesirable behavior by specifying expected behavior and reinforcing and rewarding desired behavior.

Behavior modeling: Copying someone else’s behavior.

Behavioral-based interview: Type of interview in which the interviewer focuses on how the applicant previously handled real work situations.

Behavioral rating approach: Assesses an employee’s behaviors instead of other characteristics.

Behavioral experienced training: Training methods that deal less with physical skills than with attitudes, perceptions, and interpersonal issues.

Bell-shaped curve: The curve representing the normal distribution of a rating or test score.

Bench marking: The systematic process of comparing an organization’s products, services and practices against those of competitor organizations or other industry leaders to determine what it is they do that allows them to achieve high levels of performance.

Benchmark jobs: Jobs used as reference point when setting up a job classification system.

Benchmarks: The standards used as a basis for comparison or measurement.

Benefit: An indirect reward given to an employee or group of employees as a part of organizational membership.

Bereavement leave: Time away from work due to the death of a family member.

Best practices: Defined in a variety of ways, but typically refers to the practices of an organization that enables them to achieve superior organizational performance results.

Bidding: The practice of posting all job openings internally so that current employees may be allowed the opportunity to apply for vacant positions prior to the employer seeking qualified candidates through other external recruitment measures.

Blended workforce: A workforce is comprised of permanent full-time , part-time , temporary employees and independent contractors.

Blind ad: A job advertisement placed in a newspaper, trade journal/publication, magazine or Internet job board that contains no identifying information about the employer placing the ad.

Blue collar workers: Hourly paid workers employed in occupations that require physical or manual labor.

Bona-fide occupational qualification: Situation in which gender, religion, or national origin is reasonably necessary to the normal operations of the business or enterprise.

Bonus: A one-time payment that does not become part of the employee’s base salary.

Bonus plan: An incentive pay plan which awards employees compensation, in addition to their base salary , for achieving individual or group performance and productivity goals.

Breach of contract: Occurring when an individual who is a party to a contract or agreement does not uphold or violates the terms of the contract.

Break-even analysis: A measure used to determine the approximate sales volume required to cover the costs associated with producing a particular product or service.

Broad banding: Practice of using fewer pay grades having broader ranges than traditional compensation systems.

Buddy system: A form of employee orientation whereby a newly hired employee is assigned to another employee (typically within the same department) who shows the new employee the ropes, introduces him or her to coworkers, gives personal assistance and answers questions on an as-needed basis.

Burnout: Physical or emotional exhaustion, lack of motivation or decreased morale resulting from an individual being exposed to excessive or prolonged stress and frustration caused by personal problems, work pressures, financial difficulties, etc.

Bumping rights: Rights of an employee to displace another employee due to a layoff or other employment action as defined in a collective bargaining agreement or other binding agreement.

Business agent: A full-time union official employed be the union to operate the union office and assist union members.

Business literacy: The knowledge and understanding of the financial, accounting, marketing and operational functions of an organization.

Business necessity: A practice  necessary for safe and efficient organizational operations.

Business plan: A document that provides relevant information about a company by outlining items such as the company’s business description, market or industry, management, competitors, future prospects and growth  potential, etc.





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