Glossary of commonly used terms

Sources: Holidays Act 2003 (the Act); MBIE Holidays Act 2003 Guidance, January 2018

Term Definition

Leave types

Annual holidays Annual Holidays are to provide employees with paid time off work for rest and recreation.
BAPS leave A collective term for Bereavement Leave, Alternative Holidays, Public Holidays, and Sick Leave
Bereavement leave Bereavement leave is paid leave that all employees who meet certain criteria can use if someone close to them dies.
Alternative holidays An employee gets an alternative holiday for working on a public holiday that is an otherwise working day.
Public holidays There are 11 public holidays provided under the Holidays Act 2003 and are in addition to annual holidays. An employee is entitled to a public holiday if the holiday falls on a day that the employee would otherwise have worked.
Sick leave Sick leave is paid time off work if an employee, their spouse, partner, dependent child or other person who depends on them is sick or injured.

Pay rates

Gross earnings In relation to an employee for the period during which the earnings are being assessed and means all payments an employer is required to pay under an employee’s employment agreement. The Act and Annex 1 of the MBIE Guidance (Jan 2018) provide a list of inclusions and exclusions. References: Holidays Act 2003 s14, MBIE Guidance Annex 1 (April 2019)
Ordinary Weekly Pay Ordinary weekly pay is used in the calculation of payment for annual holidays and is the amount an employee is normally paid each week. Act reference: s8(1)
Ordinary Weekly Pay – 4 week Where it is not possible to calculate ordinary weekly pay due to the variability of pay each week, a formula using the previous four weeks gross earnings should be used. Act reference: s8(2)
Average Weekly Earnings (AWE) Average weekly earnings are worked out by calculating the employee’s gross earnings over the 12 months before the end of the last pay period before the annual holiday is taken and dividing that figure by 52. Act references: s5(1), s16(3), s21, s22
Relevant Daily Pay (RDP) Public Holiday, Bereavement and Sick Leave and Alternative Holiday payments are calculated using relevant daily pay or average daily pay. Relevant daily pay is what an employee would have earned if they were at work on the day. Act reference: s9
Average Daily Pay (ADP)   If it is not possible or practicable to work out relevant daily pay or an employee’s daily pay varies in the pay period in question, average daily pay may be used. Average daily pay is the daily average of the employee’s gross earnings over the past 52 weeks. Act reference: s9A

Other terms

Otherwise working day A day an employee would have worked, had they not taken holidays or leave on the day in question. Act reference: s12
Worked hours The actual number of hours worked by an employee for a given period of time.
Work pattern The usual and definable pattern of work or work roster for an employee, described by the days and/or the hours an employee is expected to work. The work pattern forms part of the employee’s employment agreement. In the Ministry’s case, most of the workforce works 8 hours per day, 5 days per week (Mon to Fri). Work patterns vary from the standard usually due to part-time work, flexible work arrangements, or for those who work on a shift or roster. In some instances, an employee may not have a usual and definable work pattern, typical of casuals.