Glossary of tronc related terms

  • Allocation Records

    The records of how gratuities are allocated to members (staff) by the troncmaster. These records must be maintained for 6 years in case of HMRC inspection.

  • Cash Tips

    Cash left on the table or handed to a member of staff by a customer in addition to their bill.

  • Cover Charge

    A mandatory charge applied to a bill based on the number of guests dining. This is usually a small percentage sum or a fixed ‘per head’ charge. This is not classed as a gratuity as it is not discretionary. Cover charges always attract NIC because that payment by the customer is charged by the restaurant in the same way that the cost of the food is.

  • Card Tips

    A sum added by the customer onto their credit or debit card payment of the bill in lieu of leaving a cash tip.

  • Gratuity

    The umbrella term for cash tips, service charges, credit / debit card tips

  • Indirect Allocation

    The situation where a troncmaster is in place but the business provides the allocation structure which the troncmaster then follows.

  • National Living / Minimum Wage

    The statutory minimum hourly rate for workers. Tips cannot be used to make up wages to these levels, they must be in addition to these minimum wage rates.

  • Operator

    The organisation such as the restaurant, hotel, bar that is employing the people receiving the tips.

  • Service Charge

    This is a charge that is added to the customer’s bill before it is presented to them. Although it is added to the bill it must still be deeded as voluntary or discretionary for it to classed as a gratuity. This means the customer must be informed of the charge prior to ordering i.e. by it being printed on the menu.

  • Tronc

    An organised arrangement for the collection, pooling, allocation and distribution of gratuities.

  • Tronc Members

    The members of staff that the Troncmaster has decided will be included within the tronc arrangement and who will received a proportion of the pooled gratuities.

  • Troncmaster

    The person (or persons) responsible for the operation of a tronc. The troncmaster may be appointed by the business and work for the business but they cannot be a member of the businesses’ senior management team, directors or owners. They must be independent to the running of the business. For this level of independence, appointing a third party troncmaster is becoming increasingly popular.