HR Acronyms Confusion: Do We Really Need Them?

hr acronyms

We were shocked a few months ago to be asked by one of the manager’s we were working with ‘what does HR stand for’? He wasn’t being difficult, he genuinely didn’t know. And this of course begs the questions that if HR’s most commonly used acronym ‘HR’ isn’t understood by everyone, what else isn’t understood?

It never ceases to amaze us how many acronyms are endlessly used to the confusion of all those around us. The Jaluch team has talked for years about our preference for Plain English, for keeping it simple, but we do feel we’re losing the battle! Are you an acronym aficionado in the HR function who is contributing to frustrations?

If you’re wondering what we’re talking about here’s a starter for ten….After doing a RTW following her LTA she was issued with a PIP that reflected both her experience and LoS. Her PIP recommended a full TNA which will probably highlight the need for increased CPD including GDPR and EI training given what has occurred. A 360 might also be useful. Any KPIs set for her need to reflect that she works P/T.  I note she failed whilst absent to make use of our EAP which we recently introduced and communicated to staff following a reassessment of our EVP and said that in future this could affect her CSP. Phew…….

For contracts, handbooks, policy documents etc that are written in language that staff understand, minimising legal ease and maximising plain English, please call the Jaluch team for support. We love creating documents that are commercial, straight forward and written in plain. Your employees will thank you for it too!

Confused? Here’s our mini HR Acronym dictionary followed by a few gentle hints about how we can all come back down to earth!

  • BAME (employee engagement) black, asian and minority ethnic employees (totalling 7.6 million people in UK!)
  • BYOD  (training) bring your own device
  • COT3 (legal) Acas form setting out a settlement between parties following a tribunal claim
  • CPD (training) continuous professional development
  • CSP (legal) company sick pay
  • D&I (employee engagement) diversity and inclusion
  • EAP (employee engagement) employee assistance programme
  • EI (training) emotional intelligence
  • ET1 ET3  (legal) ET1 Is the claim form for an employee to make a claim to tribunal . The employer defends themselves using the ET3 form
  • EVP  (employee engagement) employee value proposition
  • F/T P/T (contract) full time or part time
  • FTE (finance) full time equivalent eg two part timers working 50% of hours each equals 1 FTE
  • HCM (strategy) human capital management –
  • HR (strategy) human resources (plenty of rude words also used here!)
  • HRD (strategy) human resources development or director
  • GDPR (legal) general data protection regulation
  • ICER (legal) Information  and consultation of employees regulations
  • ICO (legal) information commissioner’s office – used to be called data protection commissioner
  • IiP (strategy) Investors in People accreditation
  • KPI (management) Key performance indicators – often included within employee appraisal/staff review
  • L&D (training) learning and development
  • LGBTQ (employee engagement) Lesbian, gay, bi, trans and queer
  • LMS (training) learning management system – training courses uploaded onto this for access by staff
  • LoS (management) length of service
  • LTA (management) long term absence
  • LTS (management) long term sick
  • M&A (strategy) merger and acquisition
  • MATB1 (compliance) maternity form setting out expected date of birth
  • MBO (strategy)management buy out – when managers come together to buy the company
  • MBO (strategy) management by objectives
  • OD (strategy) organisation development
  • O/T (contract) over time

For all the HR documents you need written in plain English: contracts, handbook, forms, audits, check out Docs Wizard

  • PIP (management) performance improvement plan
  • P11D (finance) form sent to tax man once a year showing any employee benefits in kind that then need to be assessed for tax
  • P45 (finance)  form given to an exiting employee that shows salary earned and tax paid
  • P60 (finance) form given to each employee at end of tax year showing tax paid
  • ROI (finance) return on investment
  • RTW (management) return to work or return to work interview – usually following a period of sickness
  • SMP (legal) statutory maternity pay
  • SA (legal) settlement agreement
  • SRP (legal) statutory redundancy pay
  • SSP (contract) statutory sick pay
  • TNA (training) training needs analysis
  • TUPE (legal ) transfer of undertakings protection of employment (protects employees during mergers and acquisitions)
  • 360 degree (management) an approach to getting feedback on an individual from all relevant parties

Coming back down to earth

So now you’ve learnt them all, it would be our greatest wish that you instantly forget around 95% of these terms and instead speak in language that everyone understands. This is really important because if HR (Human resources) can’t communicate clearly and effectively then heaven help the rest of the business.  But if that is a struggle here a couple of hints and tips for going jargon free:

  • Make the whole HR team more aware of the jargon that is used and how that can come across to others in a negative way for example if they are made to feel stupid or excluded.
  • Agree which acronyms are helpful and which should be banished.
  • Appoint an HR communication champion who sets the standard for clear communication and gently nudges those who lapse back into gobbledygook.
  • Review and reward your successes as a team with a very expensive meal that you then put through expenses (only joking!!)

Say it as it is …

if you’re looking for a training solution that focuses on the practical rather than theoretical and that is responsive to realities of the workplace rather than coming from a place of ‘dreamland’ then call Jaluch now. Delegates love our engaging style, the constant participation, the case studies that they can relate to and of course the fun games. Why choose boring when you can choose Jaluch instead?  

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