business abbreviations

165 Most Common Business Abbreviations & Acronyms for 2023

Whether it’s to expedite communication or to simplify complex jargon, acronyms have become an integral part of our business lexicon. Here, we will present must-know abbreviations and acronyms in 2023 for each of the following categories:

  • General Acronyms
  • Performance-Related Acronyms
  • Time-Related Acronyms
  • Communication Acronyms for Email, Phone & Chat (e.g. Slack)
  • Financial Acronyms
  • Marketing Acronyms
  • Sales Acronyms
  • Technical And IT Acronyms
  • HR Acronyms
  • Job & Department Titles

General Acronyms

There are many acronyms used in professional settings that may also be the common-day language used in social settings. We are presenting the following list because of their widespread use and applicability in various industries and organizational contexts.

  1. ASAP: As Soon As Possible
  2. ETA: Estimated time of arrival
  3. FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions
  4. IMO: In my opinion
  5. LMK: Let me know
  6. NSFW: Not safe for work
  7. FYI: For Your Information
  8. SME: Subject matter expert
  9. BID: Break it down
  10. NWR: Not work-related
  11. RFD: Request for discussion
  12. R&D: Research and Development
  13. SOP: Standard Operating Procedure

To learn more about these acronyms, refer to this guide from MindTools: “99 of the Best Business Acronyms Explained

Performance-Related Acronyms

Whether it’s individual performance, team performance, or organizational performance, having a clear understanding of key metrics and indicators is essential for driving growth and achieving objectives. To navigate the complex landscape of performance evaluation and analysis, these acronyms provide a concise and standardized language for discussing performance.

  1. CSF: Critical Success Factor
  2. KPA: Key Process Area
  3. KPI: Key Performance Indicator
  4. KRA: Key Results Area
  5. KRI: Key Risk Indicator
  6. OGSM: Objective, Goals, Strategies and Measures
  7. OKR: Objective and Key Results
  8. SMART: Specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, time-bound
  9. PA: Performance appraisal

To learn more about these acronyms, refer to this guide from PerformYard: “From KPIs to OKRs: Your Quickstart Guide to Performance Acronyms.”

Time-Related Acronyms

To effectively navigate through schedules, deadlines, and project timelines, time-related acronyms have become invaluable. These acronyms provide a shorthand way to communicate specific time frames and intervals, ensuring efficient coordination and clarity

  1. COB: Close of business
  2. EOD: End of day
  3. EOM: End of message OR end of month
  4. EOW: End of week
  5. H1: First Half
  6. H2: Second Half
  7. MoM: Month over month
  8. MTD: Month to date
  9. Q1: Quarter 1
  10. Q2: Quarter 2
  11. QoQ or Q/Q: Quarter-over-Quarter
  12. YoY or Y/Y: Year-over-Year
  13. YTD: Year to date

To learn more about these acronyms, refer to this guide from Medium: “What is the meaning of Q1, Q2, Q3, Q4, H1, and H2 in business terms?” and ClicData: “Reporting acronyms YTD, YoY, MTD, MoM Explained

Communication Acronyms for Email, Phone & Chat (e.g. Slack)

These communication acronyms enable quick and clear messaging, ensuring smooth and productive communication within teams and across departments. Whether you’re composing a professional email, participating in a conference call, or collaborating in a chat channel, mastering these acronyms will enhance your communication skills and keep you in sync with modern workplace dynamics.

  1. NRN: No reply necessary
  2. OOO: Out of office
  3. OTP: On the phone
  4. Re: Referring to
  5. EOT: End of thread
  6. POC: Point of contact
  7. TL;DR: Too long, didn’t read
  8. TLTR: Too long to read
  9. TYT: Take your time

To learn more about communication acronyms, refer to this guide from HubSpot: “20 Email Acronyms and Abbreviations to Memorize ASAP

Financial Acronyms

The financial landscape is filled with specialized terms and concepts, often represented by acronyms. In this section, we will cover acronyms related to financial statements, accounting practices, investment terms, and regulatory bodies.

  1. AP: Accounts payable
  2. APR: Annual Percentage Rate
  3. AR: Accounts receivable
  4. BS: Balance sheet
  5. CPA: Certified Public Accountant
  6. CPU: Cost per unit
  7. CR: Credit
  8. DR: Debit
  9. EBITDA: Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization
  10. EPS: Earnings Per Share
  11. FIFO: First-In, First-Out
  12. GAAP: Generally Accepted Accounting Principles
  13. IPO: Initial Public Offering
  14. IRS: Internal Revenue Service
  15. LIFO: Last in, first out
  16. LWOP: Leave without pay
  17. NAV: Net assets value
  18. NPV: Net Present Value
  19. P-card: Purchase card
  20. P/E: Price-to-Earnings ratio
  21. P&L: Profit and loss
  22. ROA: Return on Assets
  23. ROE: Return on equity
  24. ROI: Return on investment
  25. SEC: Securities and Exchange Commission

To learn more about financial acronyms, refer to this guide from YourDictionary: “Financial Abbreviations: General, Banking and Stocks

Marketing & Sales Acronyms

Marketing and sales professionals rely on acronyms to communicate efficiently and effectively. In this section, we will delve into acronyms commonly used in marketing strategies, digital marketing, advertising, sales techniques, lead generation, customer relationship management, and more.

  1. ACV: Annual Contract Value
  2. ARPU: Average Revenue Per User
  3. ASP: Average Selling Price
  4. B2B: Business-to-Business
  5. B2C: Business-to-Consumer
  6. CAC: Customer Acquisition Cost
  7. CPM: Cost Per Thousand
  8. CRM: Customer Relationship Management
  9. CRO: Conversion Rate Optimization
  10. CTA: Call-to-Action
  11. CTR: Click-Through Rate
  12. MQL: Marketing Qualified Lead
  13. PPC: Pay-Per-Click
  14. SEM: Search Engine Marketing
  15. SEO: Search Engine Optimization
  16. SERP: Search Engine Results Page
  17. SQL: Sales Qualified Lead
  18. UGC: User-Generated Content
  19. UI: User Interface
  20. WOM: Word-of-Mouth

To learn more about these acronyms, refer to this guide from HubSpot: “75 Marketing & Business Acronyms & Abbreviations Every Industry Pro Should Know

Technical and IT Acronyms

In this section, we will cover acronyms commonly used in technical discussions, IT infrastructure, programming languages, network protocols, and software development. The selected acronyms are important for understanding and navigating the technical aspects of the digital landscape.

  1. API: Application Programming Interface
  2. CPU: Central Processing Unit
  3. CSS: Cascading Style Sheets
  4. DNS: Domain Name System
  5. FTP: File transport protocol
  6. HTML: Hypertext Markup Language
  7. HTTP: HyperText transfer protocol
  8. HTTPS: HyperText transfer protocol secure
  9. IM: Instant messaging
  10. IoT: Internet of Things
  11. IP: Internet protocol
  12. ISP: Internet service provider
  13. LAN: Local Area Network
  14. OS: Operating system
  15. QA: Quality assurance
  16. RAM: Random Access Memory
  17. RSS: Rich site summary OR really simple syndication
  18. SDK: Software Development Kit
  19. SQL: Structured Query Language
  20. SSL: Secure Sockets Layer
  21. URL: Universal resource locator
  22. UX: User Experience
  23. VPN: Virtual Private Network
  24. WAN: Wide Area Network
  25. TOS: Terms of Service

To learn more about these acronyms, refer to this guide from ActiveBatch: “IT Acronyms You Need to Know

HR Acronyms

In this section, we will explore acronyms related to HR processes, employee management, compliance, benefits, and workplace policies. These acronyms have been chosen based on their relevance and significance in HR operations and practices.

  1. FMLA: Family and Medical Leave Act
  2. PTO: Paid Time Off
  3. EEO: Equal Employment Opportunity
  4. HRIS: Human Resources Information System
  5. OSHA: Occupational Safety and Health Administration
  6. ATS: Applicant Tracking System
  7. D&I: Diversity and Inclusion
  8. SHRM: Society for Human Resource Management
  9. EAP: Employee Assistance Program
  10. ADA: Americans with Disabilities Act
  11. HSA: Health Savings Account
  12. ERG: Employee Resource Group
  13. L&D: Learning and Development
  14. COBRA: Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act
  15. I-9: Employment Eligibility Verification Form
  16. TA: Talent Acquisition
  17. LMS: Learning Management System
  18. C&B: Compensation and Benefits
  19. EE: Employee Engagement
  20. PIP: Performance Improvement Plan

To learn more about Human Resource acronyms, refer to this guide from Preply: “Top 50 HR abbreviations & acronyms

Job Titles and Departments

Next up, we cover acronyms related to various job titles and departments, ranging from executive positions to specialized roles. The selected acronyms represent common and widely recognized job titles and departments in the business world.

  1. Acc: Accountant
  2. Admin: Administrator
  3. Analyst: Data Analyst
  4. AVP: Assistant Vice President
  5. BD: Business development
  6. CAO: Chief analytics officer
  7. CCO: Chief Communications Officer
  8. CDO: Chief Data Officer
  9. CEO: Chief executive officer
  10. CFO: Chief Financial Officer
  11. CFP: Certified financial planner
  12. CHRO: Chief Human Resources Officer
  13. CIO: Chief Information Officer
  14. CMO: Chief Marketing Officer
  15. COO: Chief operating officer
  16. CSO: Chief security officer
  17. CSR: Corporate social responsibility
  18. CTO: Chief Technology Officer
  19. Dir: Director
  20. Eng: Engineer
  21. HR: Human resources
  22. HRM: Human Resources Manager
  23. IT: Information Technology
  24. Mgr: Manager
  25. PM: Project manager
  26. PR: Public Relations
  27. QA: Quality Assurance
  28. R&D: Research and development
  29. VP: Vice President
  30. FTE: Full-time employee
  31. PTE: Part-time employee

To learn more about these acronyms, refer to this guide from ONGIG: “Job Title Abbreviations & Acronyms

By being familiar with these acronyms, you can enhance your understanding and participation in various business-related conversations. It’s not just about keeping up with the lingo; it’s about ensuring effective and efficient communication in an ever-evolving business landscape.