What does efficiency mean?

Definitions for efficiency
ɪˈfɪʃ ən sief·fi·cien·cy

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word efficiency.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. efficiencynoun

    the ratio of the output to the input of any system

  2. efficiencynoun

    skillfulness in avoiding wasted time and effort

    "she did the work with great efficiency"


  1. efficiencynoun

    The extent to which time is well used for the intended task.

    The efficiency of the planning department is deplorable.

  2. efficiencynoun

    The quality of producing an effect or effects.

  3. efficiencynoun

    The extent to which a resource, such as electricity, is used for the intended purpose; the ratio of useful work to energy expended.

    The efficiency of this loudspeaker is 40%.

  4. efficiencynoun

    A one-room apartment.

  5. Etymology: efficientia

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Efficience, Efficiencynoun

    The act of producing effects; agency.

    Etymology: from efficio, Latin.

    The manner of this divine efficiency being far above us, we are no more able to conceive by our reason, than creatures unreasonable by their sense are able to apprehend after what manner we dispose and order the course of our affairs. Richard Hooker, b. i.

    That they are carried by the manuduction of a rule, is evident; but what that regulating efficiency should be, is not easily determined. Joseph Glanvill, Sceps. c. iv.

    Sinning against conscience has no special productive efficiency of this particular sort of sinning, more than of any other. Robert South, Sermons.

    A pious will is the means to enlighten the understanding in the truth of Christianity, upon the account of a natural efficiency: a will so disposed, will engage the mind in a severe search. Robert South, Sermons.

    Gravity does not proceed from the efficiency of any contingent and unstable agents; but stands on a basis more firm, being entirely owing to the direct concourse of the power of the Author of nature. John Woodward, Natural History.


  1. efficiency

    Efficiency generally refers to the ability or effectiveness of a system, process, or organization to produce the desired output with the least amount of resources or input. It typically involves minimizing waste, reducing costs, and optimizing performance. More efficient systems or processes can maximize productivity, conserve energy, save time, and deliver better results.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Efficiencynoun

    the quality of being efficient or producing an effect or effects; efficient power; effectual agency

  2. Efficiencynoun

    the ratio of useful work to energy expended

  3. Etymology: [L. efficientia.]

U.S. National Library of Medicine

  1. Efficiency

    Ratio of output to effort, or the ratio of effort produced to energy expended.

The Standard Electrical Dictionary

  1. Efficiency

    The relation of work done to energy absorbed. A theoretically perfect machine would have the maximum efficiency in which the two qualities named would be equal to each other. Expressed by a coefficient, q. v., the efficiency in such case would be equal to 1. If a machine produced but half the work represented by the energy it absorbed, the rest disappearing in wasteful expenditure, in heating the bearings, in overcoming the resistance of the air and in other ways, its efficiency would be expressed by the coefficient 1/2 or .5, or if one hundred was the basis, by fifty per centum. There are a number of kinds of efficiencies of an electric generator which are given below.

Editors Contribution

  1. efficiency

    The fact and quality of being efficient.

    The efficiency and speed of the work completed was a joy to see, the teamwork and effort was amazing, well done everyone.

    Submitted by MaryC on March 31, 2020  

Suggested Resources

  1. Efficiency

    Efficacy vs. Efficiency -- In this Grammar.com article you will learn the differences between the words Efficacy and Efficiency.

Matched Categories

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'efficiency' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #2735

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'efficiency' in Written Corpus Frequency: #4452

  3. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'efficiency' in Nouns Frequency: #1170

How to pronounce efficiency?

How to say efficiency in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of efficiency in Chaldean Numerology is: 4

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of efficiency in Pythagorean Numerology is: 4

Examples of efficiency in a Sentence

  1. John Schilling:

    Some of the more interesting parts, high-efficiency engines and guidance systems, are in the upper stages, and those usually fall far out to sea, at high speed into deep water, harder to find than that Malaysian airliner everybody has been looking for all last year.

  2. Max Stier:

    What I think is really problematic is the decisions about where you go to get work done are not made because of economic efficiency or programmatic effectiveness, but because they're workarounds.

  3. Duncan Emerton:

    They've got far, far more people doing the jobs that other companies just simply don't have, so I think it's about efficiency and resources.

  4. Le Peuch:

    Digital has become an imperative for our industry, the whole industry recognizes that this is what can unlock the next level of efficiency, productivity and performance.

  5. Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell:

    Technological innovations can provide substantial benefits to payment system efficiency and security in the long run, but they often introduce new, unanticipated risks.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for efficiency

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"efficiency." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 18 Jun 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/efficiency>.

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