Definition of personnel in US English:


plural noun

  • 1People employed in an organization or engaged in an organized undertaking such as military service.

    ‘many of the personnel involved require training’
    ‘sales personnel’
    • ‘Bonuses require military personnel to make a commitment to serve for a specified time.’
    • ‘We have got to let our service personnel know we are thinking about them and wish a speedy end to this situation.’
    • ‘British service personnel are helping to stabilise the security situation.’
    • ‘There are little villages set up in the training area, and military personnel are tasked to play civilians.’
    • ‘A barn owl had a new lease of life after it was rescued by fire service personnel at Teynampet.’
    • ‘Now do you accept that is a useful and effective way of protecting the lives of our service personnel?’
    • ‘It seems the time has come for military personnel to be given the right of conscience.’
    • ‘The various reviews will demand a restructuring of the service, more personnel and a lot more cash.’
    • ‘We invited Service personnel along to answer questions from anxious families.’
    • ‘Military personnel will also have access from inside the camp perimeter.’
    • ‘In addition, the number of service personnel is three times that of the passengers.’
    • ‘The contract also includes training military personnel in the use of the tools.’
    • ‘The emergency services personnel ran into bomb sites to get people out.’
    • ‘He came up with all kinds of ways to send messages from the military personnel to their families.’
    • ‘The service personnel must be above board to gain the respect and assistance of the public.’
    • ‘The support it offers to British service personnel and their widows and families is vital.’
    • ‘Firefighters were also at the scene, and a group of military personnel waited at the edge of the cordon.’
    • ‘It is understood large numbers of military personnel were boarding aircraft.’
    • ‘There is also the phenomenon of US military personnel posting their own personal blogs.’
    • ‘There is also the problem of Service personnel being away from friends and family.’
    staff, employees, workforce, workers, labour force, manpower, human resources, people, men and women
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1
      • ‘We called them downright funny, and we laughed all the way to the personnel office.’
      • ‘The ministry used to have only a few units, such as personnel and resources offices.’
      • ‘For some organizations, the management of personnel can be seen as just one other asset to be managed.’
      • ‘She was transferred to the personnel and administrative department but given no work.’


Early 19th century: from French (adjective used as a noun), contrasted with matériel ‘equipment or materials used in an organization or undertaking’.