Full-time = permanent, not 40-hour

Seán Fitzpatrick grendel.jjf at VERIZON.NET
Thu Jul 13 06:23:11 UTC 2006

I looked at four on-line job boards.  Jobcircle, Dice, Careerbuilder, and
Monster all use "full-time" in some way to indicate a regular employee
position, as distinct from part-time, contract, and contract-to-hire.  There
are no permanent employees anymore.

Seán Fitzpatrick
Some mornings just aren't worth chewing
through the leather restraints.

-----Original Message-----
From: James Callan [mailto:james.callan at COMCAST.NET]
Sent: Wednesday, 12 July, 2006 19:49
Subject: Full-time = permanent, not 40-hour

The creative department where I work usually hires new people first as
contract employees, then offers them permanent positions after a few months
if they're a good fit.

I was talking with some co-workers today, and the hiring process came up. I
realized that we were all making a distinction between full-time employees
and contractors -- using "full-time" to designate not someone who worked 40
hours a week, but someone who was an actual, permanent employee of the

In other words, full-time in this circumstance isn't the opposite of
part-time, it's the opposite of freelance.

This sense of the word isn't in any dictionary I've checked. Has anyone else
run across it?

(For the record: I'm in Seattle, grew up in Milwaukee.)

James Callan

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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