The Meaning of Compliance: What It Is and How To Use It

Do you consider yourself to be a compliant person? This article will define the meaning of compliance and teach you how to use this new word.

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What does the word compliance mean? Keep reading to find out!

What Does Compliance Mean?

According to Dictionary, compliance is a noun that refers to the act of conformity, acquiescence, or yielding. The word compliance evokes a sense of weakness and subservience. Compliance is three syllables (com-pli-ance), and the pronunciation of compliance is kəmˈplaɪəns.

Often, people refer to compliance concerning rules, regulations, and laws. You might hear about an officer forcing someone to comply in the news. You might also hear about a business or product not complying with standard regulations. 

How Can Compliance Be Used in a Sentence?

Compliance is a fairly common word that frequently appears in American English and British English. Below, you will find examples of compliance. 

You can use these example sentences to learn how to use the word compliance in a sentence. Then, you can use this newfound knowledge to write your own sentences using the word compliance.

Example #1: A Non-Compliance Audit

After they went rogue and started making shady deals, the company refused to give the government access to their data. The FBI obtained a non-compliance audit and investigated them anyway. The higher-ups in the company were arrested for their behavior. 

Question: Who or what practices non-compliance in the above sentence?

Answer: The company practices non-compliance.

Example #2: The Compliance Officer

The compliance officer was responsible for maintaining different apps’ cybersecurity. In addition, they forced any company that was flagged as a compliance risk to go through training and monitored them carefully for the company’s life.

Question: Who or what enforces compliance in the above sentence?

Answer: The officer enforces compliance.

Example #3: The Compliance Department

The compliance department at the bank is responsible for data protection and works with the technology department to ensure that customers’ data stays safe.

Question: Who or what is responsible for compliance in the above sentence?

Answer: The department at the bank is responsible for compliance.

Example #4: Compliance by Healthcare Workers

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA, requires full compliance from healthcare workers. These regulatory requirements and safety regulations comply with state laws and promote risk management, similar to OSHA.

Question: Who or what is required to be compliant in the above sentence?

Answer: Healthcare workers are required to be compliant.

Example #5: Compliance in the Classroom

The new teacher required absolute compliance in his classroom. We were not allowed to question his methods or ask any questions about the material, making it hard to learn.

Question: Who or what required compliance in the above sentence?

Answer: The teacher required compliance. 

What Are Translations of Compliance?

Many different people, laws, and regulations require compliance around the world. To discuss compliance with people who do not speak English, you can utilize this long list of compliance translations from Nice Translator

Then, you can speak to many different people around the world about the concept of compliance. If you are trying to read a news story about something related to compliance in another language, you can also use this list of translations.

  • Arabic: الالتزام
  • Slovenian: Skladnost
  • German: Beachtung
  • Estonian: vastavus
  • Bulgarian: съответствие
  • Chinese (Taiwan): 遵守
  • Korean: 규정 준수
  • Hungarian: megfelelés
  • Bengali: সম্মতি
  • Marathi: अनुपालन
  • Polish: zgodność
  • Chinese (PRC): 遵守
  • Telugu: అనుగుణంగా
  • Japanese: コンプライアンス
  • Welsh: cydymffurfio
  • Catalan: sumissió
  • Basque: adostasun
  • Swahili: Utekelezaji
  • Ukrainian: дотримання
  • Malay: pematuhan
  • Greek: συμμόρφωση
  • Thai: การปฏิบัติตาม
  • Turkish: uyma
  • Dutch: naleving
  • Gujarati: અનુપાલન
  • Tamil: இணங்குதல்
  • Indonesian: kepatuhan
  • Lithuanian: laikymasis
  • Icelandic: samræmi
  • Portuguese (Brazil): conformidade
  • Portuguese (Portugal): conformidade
  • Malayalam: സമ്മതം
  • Serbian: сагласност
  • Italian: conformità
  • Vietnamese: sự tuân thủ
  • Romanian: conformitate
  • Amharic: ተገ ላክ
  • Spanish: cumplimiento
  • Croatian: usklađenost
  • Norwegian: samsvar
  • Finnish: vaatimustenmukaisuus
  • Russian: согласие
  • Filipino: pagsunod
  • Swedish: efterlevnad
  • Latvian: atbilstība
  • French: conformité
  • Urdu: تعمیل
  • Czech: dodržování
  • Danish: Overholdelse
  • Slovak: súlad
  • Hebrew: הענות
  • Hindi: अनुपालन
  • Kannada: ಅನುಸರಣೆ

What Are Synonyms of Compliance?

Many English language words mean the same thing as the word compliance, and are known as synonyms of compliance. You may wonder why it is useful to know numerous words that mean the same thing. 

Learning synonyms of words like compliance is a great way to make your writing and speech sound more interesting. However, if you use the word compliance repeatedly, your sentences can get boring and monotonous. If you feel that you are overusing the word compliance, you can use a synonym like the ones below from Power Thesaurus to change things up.

  • abidance
  • acceptance
  • accordance
  • acquiescence
  • adaptability
  • adaptation
  • adherence
  • adjustability
  • agreeableness
  • agreement
  • amenability
  • approval
  • assent
  • capitulation
  • complaisance
  • compliancy
  • concurrence
  • conformability
  • conformance
  • conformation
  • conformism
  • conformity
  • consent
  • consistency
  • deference
  • docility
  • ductility
  • flexibility
  • fulfillment
  • implementation
  • keeping
  • malleability
  • manageability
  • meekness
  • obedience
  • obligingness
  • observance
  • passivity
  • pliability
  • pliancy
  • resignation
  • resilience
  • respect
  • respecting
  • servility
  • springiness
  • submission
  • submissiveness
  • subservience
  • suppleness
  • tractability
  • tractableness
  • willingness
  • yielding

What Are Antonyms of Compliance?

If you are looking for a word that means the opposite of compliance, look no further than this list of antonyms of compliance from Power Thesaurus. It is always more interesting to use an antonym of compliance for conciseness. How many definitions of the below antonyms of compliance do you already know? 

  • absolute rejection
  • absolute silence
  • allergic reaction
  • arguing
  • arseholery
  • as proud as lucifer
  • ban
  • bone to pick
  • breach
  • bull-headedness
  • challenge
  • communist infiltration
  • complaint
  • complete silence
  • contrariness
  • controversial issue
  • contumacy
  • defamation
  • defiance
  • denial
  • difference
  • direct action
  • disagreement
  • disallowance
  • disapproval
  • disfavor
  • disobedience
  • dissension
  • dissent
  • dog eat dog
  • doggedness
  • egoism
  • infringement
  • insurrection
  • intractability
  • mulishness
  • non-compliance
  • nonconformity
  • obduracy
  • obstinacy
  • opposition
  • rebellion
  • rebelliousness
  • recalcitrance
  • refractoriness
  • refusal
  • resistance
  • rigidity
  • squabble
  • stiff neck
  • strong resistance
  • stubbornness
  • unruliness
  • veto
  • waywardness
  • willfulness
  • zero tolerance


Compliance is a noun that means the act of acquiescing or conforming to a demand, law, or rule. If someone is compliant, they are obedient to rules or demands that have been put in place. Are you usually more of a compliant person or a non-compliant person?


  1. Compliance Synonyms | Power Thesaurus 
  2. Compliance Antonyms | Power Thesaurus 
  3. Compliance | Nice Translator 
  4. Compliance Definition | Dictionary