lead time


: the time between the beginning of a process or project and the appearance of its results

Examples of lead time in a Sentence

We will need at least six months lead time before production begins.
Recent Examples on the Web This reduces lead times for orders or possible repairs and lessens shipping costs for finished ranges, while upholding strict quality control. Robb Report Studio, Robb Report, 4 Apr. 2024 Larger construction projects and many business capital spending projects have long lead times, so economic growth is likely to slow early this year due to those past interest rate hikes. Bill Conerly, Forbes, 1 Mar. 2024 Fall is the best time to plant hydrangeas because there is more lead time for root growth, but spring is alternately a good time also. Patricia Shannon, Southern Living, 22 Mar. 2024 Treat employees with respect: longer lead times, transparency, reskilling programs, management pay cuts before job cuts, phased early retirement options. Ann Kowal Smith, Forbes, 13 Feb. 2024 Had it been approved on Tuesday, the shot clock would’ve gone into effect for the 2026-27 season, but that lead time wasn’t enough to convince the majority of the Legislative Council’s 71 voters. Kyle Newman, The Denver Post, 30 Jan. 2024 Currently, there's approximately a 12-month lead time on orders to delivery. Kurt Knutsson, Cyberguy Report, Fox News, 27 Jan. 2024 Manufacturing supply chains, characterized by their short lead times and complexity, are especially susceptible to disruptions. Dennis Mitzner, Forbes, 19 Feb. 2024 According to Northrop Grumman, the SMART Demo successfully demonstrated several innovative technologies, alternate manufacturing materials and processes to reduce lead times by 75 percent. Stephen Clark, Ars Technica, 15 Dec. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'lead time.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1944, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of lead time was in 1944

Dictionary Entries Near lead time

Cite this Entry

“Lead time.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lead%20time. Accessed 17 Apr. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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