What are White Collar Businesses?

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Have you ever heard the term “white collar” business but were unsure of what this meant? This is a common term that is thrown around in the business world, but it is not always exactly clear what is meant by this phrase. This post will look at what white-collar business means and look at a few common examples. Interested? Keep reading to find out more.

White Collar Businesses Defined

Generally speaking, white-collar businesses are office-based businesses with employees engaging in non-manual work and are often characterised by higher pay and professional qualifications. As you might have guessed, the name comes from white dress shirts that employees wear in a white-collar business. White-collar businesses often require a higher level of education and advanced skills, allowing for analytical and cognitive tasks.

Examples of White Collar Jobs 

There are all kinds of jobs available in a typical white-collar business. This includes basic administrative roles right through to managerial positions. White-collar jobs are often associated with roles that require a high level of education and advanced skills, such as doctors, lawyers, accountants, and investment bankers.

The Difference Between White Collar & Blue Collar

Blue collar is another term you will hear thrown around in the business world. Where white-collar businesses tend to be office-based primarily, blue-collar businesses are associated with manual labor and skilled trades. These can include construction, warehousing, manufacturing, and maintenance. Typical blue-collar jobs include electricians, plumbers, machine operators, truck drivers, and auto mechanics. Although less common nowadays, the name blue collar came from the work shirts worn by labourers in the early 20th century.

When Something Goes Wrong

In white-collar businesses, seemingly small errors can have devastating consequences. These are often highly analytics roles, so a slight miscalculation can result in significant financial loss and/or legal issues.

Types of White Collar Crime

Leading on from this, white-collar crime is a serious issue within these types of businesses. While they are usually non-violent, white-collar crimes can have significant financial consequences and be hard to recover from in terms of reputational damage. Common white-collar crimes include:

Fraud: Deceiving a person or business for financial gain, such as falsifying documents or misrepresenting facts.

Money laundering: Hiding the origins of illegally obtained money by passing it through commercial transactions.

Tax evasion: Avoiding paying tax via illegal methods, such as falsifying financial records or hiding money in offshore bank accounts.

Hopefully, this post will help you gain a stronger understanding of what is meant by a white-collar business. It is not always exactly clear, but these are generally office-based businesses employing highly skilled workers and often for higher pay than other types of business. Work in a white-collar business is often highly analytical, which means that there are also risks that can prove to be costly.

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