Learn the vocabulary to talk about working hours in English:
to work overtime = to do more than the usual hours required by the contract
- We aren’t paid when we work overtime, we can take time off in lieu.
- We had to work overtime to get the project finished on time.
to work shifts = to work in teams at different times of the day and night
- In today’s twenty-four hour society, more and more people work shifts.
- We get paid more when we work shifts to compensate for the irregular times.
shift work = when groups of workers work at different times of the day and night
- The irregular rhythm of shift work can be very hard on family life.
- Production keeps going non-stop so we have a lot of people who do shift work.
to be on the night shift = to work with a group during the night, often from ten pm to six am
- It’s very hard on the night shift because I can’t sleep very well during the day.
- Some people prefer to be on the night shift because they are at home when the children come home from school.
flexitime = a system where people can vary the start and end times
- As we work flexitime, I take the children to school and arrive at nine thirty.
- With flexitime, as long as I have done my seven hours, I can leave at four thirty.
a roster = a list of who’s working when and where
- The weekly roster is put up on the board so that you can see who is working.
- Look on the roster to see what job you are doing.
to have time off = to take vacation or leave
- I’d like to have some time off next month. I need a break.
- If you want to have time off, you have to fill out a request form and give it to your line manager.
to take a day off = to have an authorised absence from work for a day
- I had two days off last week so I have a lot of work to catch up on.
- I’d like a day off next week to deal with some family matters. Friday if that is convenient.
full-time = work a whole working week
- At the moment I only work two days a week but I would like to work full-time.
- After the birth of my son, I didn’t want to go back full-time so do three days a week now.