scheme scheme [skiːm] noun [countable]
1. an official plan or arrangement that is intended to help people in some way:

• a government training scheme for the unemployed

2. FINANCE an arrangement in which the government or an employer provides financial help to people:

• There is a low-interest loan scheme for employees who have been with the company for over two years.

conˌtributory ˈpension ˌscheme FINANCE
a pension scheme into which both the employee and the employer make payments
ˌfinal ˈsalary ˌpension ˌscheme FINANCE
a company pension scheme in which an employee's pension is based on their salary at the time when they retire and the number of years that they have worked for the company
ˌnon-conˌtributory ˈpension ˌscheme FINANCE
a pension scheme into which only the employer makes payments, not the employee
ˈpension ˌscheme FINANCE
a system in which an employer, insurance company etc provides workers with a pension after they have made regular payments into the scheme over many years; = PENSION PLAN:

• A good company pension scheme helps to attract and keep staff.

• The ruling applies to occupational pension schemes but not to the state earnings-related scheme.

ˌstate ˌearnings-reˌlated ˈpension ˌscheme abbreviation SERPS FINANCE
in Britain, a government arrangement until 2002 for buying a pension that was in addition to the basic state pension
3. a clever plan, especially to do something bad or illegal:

• a $1.9 billion fraud scheme

ˈpyramid ˌscheme or ˈPonzi ˌscheme FINANCE
a dishonest way of selling investments, in which the money paid by new investors is used to pay interest and other money owed to existing investors. When new investment brings less than the money owed, new investors lose their money
4. a system used to organize information:

• a new classification scheme for the library

* * *

scheme UK US /skiːm/ noun [C]
UK GOVERNMENT, MANAGEMENT, FINANCE an officially organized plan or system: a scheme to do sth »

The firm is lead developer on a scheme to construct 800 homes.

devise/come up with a scheme »

They have devised a scheme that allows entrepreneurs to benefit from each other's success.


introduce/launch/set up a scheme

run/operate a scheme »

Tesco runs a scheme to help managers spot talent.


a job-creation/training scheme


a government/management scheme


an incentive/mentoring scheme


investment/savings schemes

DISAPPROVING a plan for getting an advantage for yourself, especially by deceiving others: a scheme to do sth »

He was planning a scheme to rob people of their savings.


participate in/be involved in a scheme

See also ADVANCE FEE SCHEME(Cf. ↑advance fee scheme), BUDDY SCHEME(Cf. ↑buddy scheme), CONTRIBUTORY PENSION SCHEME(Cf. ↑contributory pension scheme), ENTERPRISE INVESTMENT SCHEME(Cf. ↑enterprise investment scheme), OCCUPATIONAL PENSION SCHEME(Cf. ↑occupational pension scheme), PENSION SCHEME(Cf. ↑pension scheme), PONZI SCHEME(Cf. ↑Ponzi scheme), PYRAMID SCHEME(Cf. ↑pyramid scheme), REWARD SCHEME(Cf. ↑reward scheme), SMALL SELF-ADMINISTERED SCHEME(Cf. ↑small self-administered scheme), SUGGESTION SCHEME(Cf. ↑suggestion scheme)
scheme UK US /skiːm/ verb [I]
DISAPPROVING to make clever secret plans which are intended to deceive people: scheme against sb »

His staff were scheming against him.

Financial and business terms. 2012.

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