a shift

A "shift" is the period of time that an employee has to work. Jobs that have "shifts" are usually paid by the hour. One shift is usually between 4 to 16 hours, and can sometimes have a name like:

  • the late shift
  • the morning shift
  • the graveyard shift (a creative name for a shift that starts late at night and goes until early morning)

The verb "work" is sometimes used to talk about a shift. In a job with a shift system, you might hear an employee say:

"I'm working the afternoon shift tomorrow."

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