Glossary of Terms

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Applies to , ,


Access privileges

Access privileges, also called ‘access levels’ determines what users can see and do in When I Work. See also employee, supervisor, manager, and admin.

Account holder

The user that is the owner of the account and in charge of billing. The admin has complete access to all account settings. See also access privileges.

Account ID

A unique ID for the workplace account set in the General Settings that employees can use to register for your account without an invite.

Alerts Alert

Email and mobile alerts let you know when something has changed or needs your attention. If you’d like to customize the alerts you receive, see Setting Alert Preferences.

Android device

An Android phone or tablet using the When I Work Employee Scheduling application. See Minimum Requirements.

Annotations Annotations

Use annotations to send your staff important information about a particular day. You can send a general announcement, let your staff know that time off isn’t allowed, or let your staff know that your business will be closed that day. The When I Work apps prominently display annotations to your entire team. For more information, see Using Annotations.

Annual billing Billing

An annual billing cycle allows for you to pay for your When I Work plan for the year. 

Attendance Clock

When I Work product that tracks users’ work hours for easy export to a payroll processor. Users clock in and out using one of three time clock methods.

Attendance notices

Notices on the dashboard of accounts with Scheduling + Attendance. These notices let you know when an employee is late, forgot to clock out, clocked in at the wrong location or forgot to clock in.

Auto-deduct breaks

The break option in the Attendance Settings that automatically deducts scheduled unpaid breaks from timesheets.

Auto Scheduling 

Auto scheduling leverages the information already entered in your When I Work account to create a schedule. The feature automatically assigns unpublished OpenShifts to employees for you to review and publish. See Auto Scheduling.

Availability Availability

When I Work feature that allows employees to record when they prefer to work and when they prefer not to work. The scheduling manager has the option (not obligation) to take employees’ preferences into account when building the schedule. For more information, see Setting Your Availability Preferences and Interpreting Availability on the Schedule.


Bell (notifications) Notification

Shows notifications for pending employees and swap, drop, and time off requests that have been updated or need your attention. See Processing Time Off Requests and Processing Shift Requests.


Unpaid lunch breaks or paid breaks can be enabled in the Attendance Settings.

Budget tools 

View option in the scheduler that allows you to view how much is being spent on labor costs. You can also input projected sales or actual sales to get a labor expenses to projected sales ratio.


Calendar sync

Feature that allows you to add your When I Work schedule to your personal calendar. See Syncing Your Schedule to a Calendar App.


Dashboard Dashboard

Page that shows a snapshot of what’s going on today. The dashboard appears when you first log in to the When I Work app. See Using the Dashboard.

Documents Document

A central repository in When I Work for documents you want to share company-wide. This is useful for on-boarding checklists, employee handbooks, or training manuals. You can share links to documents in shift notes, job sites, annotations and WorkChat. See Document Storage Reference for managers.

Drop Drop Shift

If an employee is unable to work an assigned shift, the employee can initiate a drop request that offers the shift to eligible coworkers. If one of the coworkers accepts the request, the shift becomes that person’s responsibility. See Swapping and Dropping Shifts.



An employee is eligible to pick up a shift if they meet the following criteria: They are qualified for the shift based on their assigned positions, they are not already scheduled for a shift, they are not scheduled for approved time off, and they are not hidden in the scheduler. See How Do OpenShifts Work?

Employees Employees

A user that gets the schedule in When I Work but does not make the schedule. See also access privileges and Adding and Editing Employees.

Employee ID

An employee ID is a unique numeric identification code set by your employer. You can use this ID to clock in and out on a time clock terminal.


A way to get data from When I Work for your records. 


Find replacement

A feature that allows you to find a replacement for a shift that an employee is unable to work. The first employee to accept the shift will be automatically assigned the shift to their schedule.


Gear menu Gear

Menu in the When I Work web app that provides management access to general settings, scheduling settings, attendance settings, integrations and the account & billing page (admin only).

General Settings Settings

The General Settings section contains your app settings (account name, account id, timezone, start of the week, time format and currency), your overtime thresholds, WorkChat, Time Off Request and Employee Privacy settings.


Integrations Integrations

Tools that allow When I Work to connect with products from other vendors to streamline how you run your business. See Setting Up Payroll Integrations and Getting Access to the When I Work API.


The receipts of payments made on your account.

iOS device

An iPhone or iPad using the When I Work Staff Scheduling application. See Minimum Requirements.


Job site Job Site

A place where shifts take place that is off-site from your workplace schedules. Check out When to Use Schedules and Job Sites.


Lunch break Unpaid Break

Also called unpaid break. Allow employees to report their lunch breaks by enabling it in the Attendance Settings. See Take a Lunch Break.



A user that can manage the schedule and timesheets for all schedules. See also access privileges.

Max hours

The maximum hours per week that are set for an employee or a schedule that help track hours while scheduling. See Tracking Hours in the Scheduler.

Mobile app time clock

Feature that allows users to clock in and out for shifts from the When I Work app on their mobile devices. See Allow Clocking In from Mobile Devices and Clocking In and Out on iOS and Android.

Monthly billing Billing

A monthly billing cycle allows for you to pay for your When I Work plan month-to-month.

My Schedule My Schedule

Your My Schedule page allows you to see your schedule, confirm your shifts, and pick up OpenShifts.



An OpenShift feature that allows you to select which eligible employees can pick up a shift.

OpenShift OpenShift

A shift that is published without an assigned employee. OpenShifts can be taken by any employee that is available to work and qualified to work the position. See Scheduling an OpenShift.


When I Work calculates weekly, daily and double daily overtime. You can set overtime thresholds to determine when employees earn overtime.


Paid Break 

A break setting option that allows employees to report that they have taken all of their required paid breaks during their shift. See How Paid Break Reporting Works.

Pay period

Recurring length of time during which employees’ hours are recorded. Employees are paid once for each pay period. The length of the pay period can be configured in the Attendance Settings. See Close and Export Pay Period Hours.

Personal computer time clock

Feature that allows users to clock in and out from shifts from the When I Work web app on a personal computer. See Allow Clocking In From a Personal Computer.

Position Position

A particular job, duty, or skill that is performed at your workplace. For example: barista, roaster, and cashier. Assign employees with positions to identify their qualifications, and assign shifts with positions to make sure you have the schedule coverage that you need. See Creating and Managing Positions.

Preferred hours

The number of hours that an employee prefers to work per week. See Setting Your Preferred Hours.


Feature that keeps personal contact information private in When I Work. Employees can set their own privacy preferences.

Profile My Profile

Each user in When I Work has a profile that defines their name, picture, contact information, time zone, preferred hours, and alert preferences. See Updating Your Profile Settings.


Paid time off. See also time off request and Time Off Types.

Publishing Publish and Notify

Shifts aren’t visible to employees until they are published by a supervisor, manager, or admin. See Publishing the Schedule.



A term for when an employee is assigned to the same position as a shift. See How Do OpenShifts Work?


Repeating shift Repeat

A shift that automatically recurs every 1–6 weeks. See Setting Up Repeating Shifts.

Reports Report

A centralized location for all of the reports available for your account. See Reporting Reference.

Requests menu Requests

The menu that contains time off, shift and OpenShift requests.



A user that can manage the schedule and timesheets for specific schedules. See also access privileges.

Schedules Schedules

A feature that allows you to group employees into separate schedules. You might want to set up multiple schedules if your business operates out of different physical locations/regions or you want to build separate schedules for different teams/departments. For instructions, see Creating Multiple Schedules.

Schedule template 

Schedule templates allow you to create a daily or weekly schedule that is reusable. If your schedules are very similar from day to day or week to week, use a template to save time and avoid creating schedules from scratch. See Using Schedule Templates.

Scheduler Calendar

Page in the When I Work web app where supervisors, managers, and the admin build the schedule. See Scheduler Reference Guide.


When I Work product that streamlines the schedule building and distribution process. See Setting Up Scheduling for Your Business.

Scheduling Settings Scheduler Settings

The Scheduling Settings section contains options for the scheduler, shift swaps and drops, Shift Confirmation, Availability and Tasks.


A time period during which an employee works at your business. See Scheduling Basics.

Shift Bidding OpenShift Approval Required

Also called “OpenShift Requests” is an option within an OpenShift that allows employees to express interest in the shift. Management can then view who has requested to pick up the OpenShift and select and approve an employee to work the shift. See Shift Bidding.

Shift confirmation Acknowledge Shifts

A verification measure that helps managers and supervisors know whether users have seen their scheduled shifts. See Using Shift Confirmation.

Shift replacement 

If an employee is unable to work an assigned shift, a supervisor or manager can offer the shift to other eligible employees. The first employee to accept the offer is automatically assigned to work the shift. See Finding a Replacement for a Shift.

Shift template Shift Template

Shift templates save you time when you need to schedule shifts that have a consistent start and end time. Instead of manually entering in custom shifts details one-by-one, shift templates allow you to schedule a shift quickly and easily. See Creating and Managing Shift Templates.

Shift requests Shift Requests

A way for employees to swap or drop shifts that they are unable to work. See Processing Shift Requests. 

Split shift 

If an employee cannot work a part of an assigned shift, the employee can split the shift and then swap or drop the shorter, conflicting shift. See Split Shifts.

Swap Swap Shifts

If an employee is unable to work an assigned shift, the employee can trade shifts by initiating a swap request that offers the shift to eligible coworkers. If one of the coworkers accepts the request, the employees trade shifts. See Swapping and Dropping Shifts.


Tasks Tasks

Use tasks to let your employees know what activities they need to complete on a given day and make sure those activities are completed.


Feature that allows supervisors, managers, and admins to send text messages to their employees. See Sending Group Emails and Text Messages.

Time clock

How employees clock in and out for their shifts. When I Work allows employees to clock in from a time clock terminal, mobile device, or personal computer.

Time clock terminal Time Clock

A dedicated computer or mobile device at the workplace that is used solely for clocking in and out. For setup instructions, see Setting Up a Time Clock Terminal. See also time clock.

Time off request Time Off Requests

A way for employees to request time off from work and get approval from a manager. See Requesting Time Off.

Time Tracker Time Tracker

Time Clock & Attendance feature that allows management to quickly compare  daily scheduled shifts with actual clocked in hours. See Using the Time Tracker.

Timesheets Time Sheet

Record of an employee’s hours for a given pay period. See Reviewing Employees’ Timesheets


Unpaid Break Unpaid Break

Unpaid breaks can be scheduled into shifts so they can be auto-deducted from the timesheets. See Add Unpaid Breaks to Shifts and Automatically Deduct Scheduled Breaks.


WorkChat WorkChat

Chat feature that allows all users at a workplace to communicate and share photos in real time. See Using WorkChat and Managing WorkChat.

Workplace menu Workplace

Menu that provides access to employees, positions, schedules, shift templates, tasks lists and job sites.

Wrench menu Wrench

In the When I Work web app Scheduler, the Wrench button menu provides access to scheduling shortcuts that can save you time. See Scheduler Reference Guide.

Updated on August 30, 2022

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