op·​er·​a·​tion·​al | \ ˌä-pə-ˈrā-shnəl How to pronounce operational (audio) , -shə-nᵊl\

Definition of operational

1 : of or relating to operation or to an operation the operational gap between planning and production
2 : of, relating to, or based on operations
3a : of, engaged in, or connected with execution of military or naval operations in campaign or battle
b : ready for or in condition to undertake a destined function

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Other Words from operational

operationally adverb

Examples of operational in a Sentence

The new airport should be fully operational by next year. The computer network is now operational.

Recent Examples on the Web

Harcombe House provides physical and mental health support to operational and retired members of the U.K.’s fire and rescue services and their dependents. Simon Perry, PEOPLE.com, "The Meaningful Reason Prince William Is Asking People to Start Texting More," 9 Sep. 2019 The National Women’s Soccer League has avoided the same fate thanks in large part to financial and operational support from U.S. Soccer, along with a more economical financial model. Jamie Goldberg, oregonlive, "National Women’s Soccer League enters new era with U.S. Soccer’s role in league set to change," 3 Sep. 2019 Too many inmate bodies have stacked up and too much operational and criminal dysfunction has been exposed. Phillip Morris, cleveland.com, "Cuyahoga County jail should have never become a prison: Phillip Morris," 1 Sep. 2019 The risk of employee strikes surfacing in WeWork’s financial disclosures not only signals to investors the potential impact on the company’s operational and financial condition—but also how meaningful strikes have become. Michelle Cheng, Quartz at Work, "Union pushes at places like YouTube and WeWork could transform white-collar work," 1 Sep. 2019 But as habits change, the vast financial and operational infrastructure that supports local programming is endangered. Samuel Axon, Ars Technica, "Soon you’ll be able to watch PBS on YouTube," 29 July 2019 Wrigley expects to see traditional players along the lines of Constellation Brands continue to acquire and invest in cannabis firms, but with a more critical eye on the management background and financial and operational history. Alicia Wallace, CNN, "CEO ouster at Canopy Growth highlights growing pains for cannabis industry," 5 July 2019 Kaufman's police and fire departments remain operational, according to the statement. Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "While one Texas county shook off ransomware, small cities took full punch," 21 Aug. 2019 That way, if one business participating in the fund goes under, the fund remains operational. Andrew Wilford, National Review, "National Pension Fiasco Merits Real Reform, Not a Bailout," 6 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'operational.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of operational

1885, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for operational

operation + -al entry 1

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Statistics for operational

Last Updated

19 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for operational

The first known use of operational was in 1885

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More Definitions for operational



English Language Learners Definition of operational

: ready for use : able to be used
: of or relating to the operation of a business or machine


op·​er·​a·​tion·​al | \ ˌä-pə-ˈrā-shə-nᵊl How to pronounce operational (audio) \

Kids Definition of operational

: ready for use The new airport is now operational.


op·​er·​a·​tion·​al | \ ˌä-pə-ˈrā-shə-nəl How to pronounce operational (audio) \

Legal Definition of operational

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Comments on operational

What made you want to look up operational? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


formidable, illustrious, or eminent

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