Work, Work-life balance Vocabulary

Here are the most common vocabulary related to the topic ‘Work’. These words are collected from different sources and can be used in both productive sections of IELTS. They can also help you better understand the Reading section of the test.

First part – 20 words

  1. promotion (noun) – the act of raising someone to a higher or more important position or rank.
    – Did Steve get the promotion he wanted?
    – The job offers excellent promotion prospects.
  2. increment (noun) – one of a series of increases.
    – You will receive annual salary/pay increments every September.
  3. downsizing (noun) – the practice of making a company or an organization smaller by reducing the number of people working for it, or an occasion when this is done.
    – The company announced a worldwide downsizing of its operations.
    – There have been reports of layoffs and downsizings.
  4. resign (verb) – to give up a job or position by telling your employer that you are leaving.
    – He resigned from the company in order to take a more challenging job.
    – She resigned as director.
  5. demanding (adj) – needing a lot of time, attention, or energy.
    – She’s a very demanding child.
    – How far does the knowledge that the state will tax away high salaries deter people from entering high-earning and demanding jobs?
  6. deadline (noun) – a time or day by which something must be done.
    – There’s no way I can meet that deadline.
    – We’re working to a tight deadline (= we do not have much time to finish the work).
    – I’m afraid you’ve missed the deadline – the deadline for applications was 30 May.
  7. timekeeping (noun) – how good or bad someone is at arriving at work, at meetings, etc. at the agreed time.
    – He was threatened with the sack for poor timekeeping.
    – Analysts looked at timekeeping and attendance records as part of the investigation.
  8. moonlighting (noun) – the act of working at an extra job, especially without telling your main employer.
    – You’ll lose your job if the boss finds out you’ve been moonlighting.
    – Sometimes, when you want to change direction or move into a new industry, moonlighting is the only option.
  9. unskilled (adj) – without any particular work skills, or (of work) not needing any particular skills.
    Unskilled workers may lose their jobs.
    Unskilled manual jobs no longer support a family, like they did in the 1950s.
  10. freelance (adj, adv) – doing particular pieces of work for different organizations, rather than working all the time for a single organization
    – Most of the journalists I know are freelance.
    – After ten years in corporate advertising he decided to go freelance.
  11. self-employed (adj) – not working for an employer but finding work for yourself or having your own business.
    – Do you pay less tax if you’re self-employed?
    – 16% of workers in Britain are self-employed.
  12. recruitment (noun) – the process of employing new people to work for a company or organization.
    – In the private business sector, there has been a tight limit on wage rises and a near-freeze on recruitment.
    – A survey in January highlighted the recruitment of people with leadership skills as one of HR directors’ biggest worries.
  13. retention (noun) – the ability of a company to keep its employees and stop them from going to work somewhere else.
    – Health benefits are an important recruitment and retention tool.
    – Both these organizations have improved staff retention by paying great attention to office design.
  14. qualification (noun) – an ability, characteristic, or experience that makes you suitable for a particular job or activity.
    – Some nursing experience is a necessary qualification for this job.
    – One of the qualifications you need to work here is a sense of humour!
  15. teamwork (noun) – the activity of working together in a group with other people, especially when this is successful.
    – Her determination, teamwork skills and leadership capabilities convinced us that she was perfect for the job.
    – These activities are used to encourage teamwork.
  16. redundant (adj) – having lost your job because your employer no longer needs you.
    – To keep the company alive, half the workforce is being made redundant.
    – He was made redundant and given a big pay-off.
  17. time-consuming (adj) – taking a lot of time to do or complete.
    – Commuting by car nowadays is much more time-consuming than it used to be.
    – Employment tribunals are time-consuming and expensive.
  18. productive (adj) – producing a large number of goods, crops, profit, etc. or doing a lot of work.
    – The idea was to reward France’s highly productive workers with shorter working hours.
    – He had an amazingly productive five years in which he managed to write four novels.
  19. commute (verb) – to make the same journey regularly between work and home
    – It’s exhausting commuting from Brighton to London every day.
    – He commuted every day, back and forth, an hour and 20 minutes each way.
  20. prospects (noun) – the possibility of being successful, especially at work.
    – She’s hoping the course will improve her career prospects.
    Prospects for employment remain bleak for most people in the area.

Second part – 20 words

  1. jobseeker (noun) – someone who is trying to find a job.
    – In the long term, the introduction of the jobseeker’s allowance is estimated to increase the cost of the family credit by up to £10 million.
    – An education system that produces unfocused jobseekers is clearly unhelpful.
  2. vacancy (noun) – a job that is available in an organization and that people can apply for.
    – We currently have a vacancy for a sales representative.
    – Job vacancies in London’s investment banking industry continue to rise.
  3. recruit (verb) – to employ new people to work for a company or organization.
    – Our primary objective is to recruit, keep, and deploy good people.
    – The loan will be used for start-up costs to recruit workers and provide ongoing operating expenses.
  4. procrastination (noun) – to delay doing something that you ought to do, usually because you do not want to do it.
    – People often procrastinate when it comes to paperwork.
    – It’s time to stop procrastinating and get the job done.
  5. routine (adj) – ordinary and boring.
    – My job is so routine and boring – I hate it.
    – My job at the newspaper had become routine.
  6. repetitive (adj) – done many times in the same way, and boring.
    – A lot of the work we have to do is repetitive.
    – These costs were attributed to job dissatisfaction caused by boring, repetitive work.
  7. human resources (noun) – the department of an organization that deals with finding new employees, keeping records about all the organization’s employees, and helping them with any problems.
    – Generally, capacity building is taken to mean training of human resources.
    Human resources deal with changes to contracts.
  8. ergonomics (noun) – the scientific study of people and their working conditions, especially done in order to improve effectiveness.
    – A specialist in ergonomics will work with the team designing the production line in our new factory.
    – The ergonomics of the new office furniture have reduced eyestrain and back problems among the computer users.
  9. self-employed (adj, noun) – not working for an employer but finding work for yourself or having your own business.
    – Do you pay less tax if you’re self-employed?
    – They run an advice centre for the self-employed.
  10. freelance (adj, adv) – doing particular pieces of work for different organizations, rather than working all the time for a single organization.
    – She took on several freelance writing jobs before landing a full-time position at the newspaper.
    – After ten years in corporate advertising he decided to go freelance.
  11. learn the rope to learn how to do a job or activity
    Learning the ropes, learning the science behind dentistry, reading all the dental journals.
  12. flexitimea system of working in which people work a set number of hours within a fixed period of time, but can change the time they start or finish work
    – Throughout the civil service, flexitime is increasing because that is what employees want.
    – Six hundred and thirty-three staff were on flexitime.
  13. side hustlea piece of work or a job that you get paid for doing in addition to doing your main job
    – Here are some ideas for a side hustle.
    – We all know that millennials love a good side hustle—to fuel both their passions and their wallets.

By Atajanov Khamdambek

Freelance teacher. Lawyer. IT enthusiast.

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