The English language is constantly changing, which makes it difficult to keep up with which words are proper. One of the most common changes that get mixed up is onsite and on-site. Which of these is the proper way to use the word?
Both words are considered right depending on which dictionary you are looking at. For example, the Merriam-Webster dictionary has it as on-site. The Cambridge dictionary has both onsite and on-site, and the U.S. Heritage dictionary shows it as onsite.
Which is Correct?
Technically, both onsite and on-site are considered to be correct. Recently, it is more common to see the word spelled without the hyphen as the English language has changed. You might still see some people use on-site, but it isn’t as common as it used to be.
In a professional setting, it is still considered correct to use the hyphen. This is because it is still seen as correct in several dictionaries.
On-site is used to describe something that happens on the same premises. For example, some restaurants will make their bread on-site from scratch instead of buying it at a store.
This spelling is considered to be correct when you use the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the Oxford dictionary, or the Chicago Style Manual. For this reason, you should use the hyphen in professional documents.
I heard they have a gym on-site for employees.
We have plenty of on-site parking at my apartment.
After the pandemic, many companies are switching from on-site employment to work-from-home employment.
The biggest selling point for this apartment complex is the on-site carwash.
Her concerts always have on-site security in case things get out of hand.
Onsite means the exact same thing as on-site, just without the hyphen. As the English language changes and adapts, this spelling is becoming more popular. For some reason, people aren’t a fan of hyphens anymore, so they are being removed from words when necessary.
According to the Columbia Journalism review, the hyphen is being used less and less. This is why it is most common for you to see the word without the hyphen instead of with. However, it is still recommended to use the hyphen in professional settings.
We all used to work onsite, but now we work at home.
I tried to find an onsite parking attendant, but I didn’t have any luck.
This hotel has an onsite coffee shop!
I’m obsessed with the onsite jacuzzi that was just installed.
There’s not an onsite bathroom? Where’s the closest one, then?
If you stay onsite at the amusement park, you will save money on your trip.
Remembering the Difference
The good thing about onsite and on-site is they can be used in place of each other, so you don’t have to worry about using the wrong form. You will likely see onsite used more frequently, but on-site is considered to be proper in most dictionaries.
If you are writing something professional, you should use the hyphen. If what you are writing isn’t professional, you can use either form of the word without having to worry about using the wrong form of the word.
Onsite and on-site are the same word, just spelled differently. Since the English language changes constantly, spellings will also change. This is what happened to the word on-site. It used to be more commonly spelled with the hyphen, now it is mostly used without the hyphen.
However, if you are writing something professional, it is best to use on-site instead of onsite because the hyphen is still considered correct in many dictionaries.
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