1. Home
  2. Glossary
  3. White-Collar Worker

Glossary: HR & Recruiting Definitions

What is a white-collar worker?

A white-collar worker is a person who performs clerical or administrative work, or other types of work that don’t involve physical or manual labour. White-collar work is often done in an office.

White-collar worker definition

A white-collar worker is any employee of an organisation who performs tasks that don’t involve a large amount of manual labour. This can include many skills, such as bookkeeping and administrative tasks, coding, marketing, and many computer-based tasks. The term white-collar was coined in the early 1930s, inspired by the white shirts that many office workers would wear. White-collar workers can be employees in both the private and public sectors, although a larger percentage of workers are found in the private sector.

Examples of white-collar workers

As mentioned, the term white-collar worker covers a wide range of roles, mostly held by office workers. Some examples are:

Are there other terms for white-collar workers?

While the term white-collar worker is widely used, other terms can be used interchangeably with it. These include:

  • Office worker
  • Clerical worker
  • Administrative worker

It is worth noting that the term skilled worker or professional worker may be used alongside white-collar worker, but this term is considered outdated now as blue-collar workers are also skilled.

Simplify your hiring process and workflow

Understand how to create job ads that actually work. Leverage winning strategies to best promote ads. Find the ideal candidate faster.

Already have an account? Sign in

Related to “W”

Recommended Articles

How to hire an employee in 10 clear steps
Hiring process How to hire an employee in 10 clear steps

Find out how to hire an employee in 10 simple steps. Whether you're hiring your first employee or want to brush up on your skills. Check it out!

Frans Lelivelt Aug 25, 2023
How to source candidates (for free): 10 sourcing strategies
Talent acquisition How to source candidates (for free): 10 sourcing strategies

Candidate sourcing is an essential part of the recruiting process – and a unique skill to acquire. With the right candidate sourcing strategies, you can improve your hiring process and find qualified candidates – whether active or passive – more efficiently.

Frans Lelivelt Jun 30, 2023
How to post a job on LinkedIn in a few simple steps
Talent acquisition How to post a job on LinkedIn in a few simple steps

LinkedIn is a powerful platform for jobseekers and businesses looking to hire new talent. And LinkedIn job posting is incredibly easy (and free) - see how it works!

Frans Lelivelt Aug 31, 2023

Easily post your job ads to 10+ job boards

Find your next hire - for free!

Get started