Close of Business

What Is Close of Business?

“Close of Business” (COB) refers to the time when a business officially ends its working day. The exact time can vary widely between different industries, companies, or geographic locations. COB is often used to set deadlines for tasks, meetings, or business transactions that need to be completed within the business day.

Key Features of Close of Business

  • Standard Business Hours: Typically aligns with standard business operating hours, which in many cases are 9 AM to 5 PM.
  • Time Zone Considerations: COB can vary significantly depending on the time zone where the business operates.
  • Industry-Specific: Different industries may have different customary closing times based on typical business practices.

How Does Close of Business Work?

  1. Setting Expectations: Companies define their standard operating hours, including the specific time designated as COB.
  2. Communication: COB is communicated internally and externally to ensure all stakeholders are aware of deadlines.
  3. Scheduling: Internal and external deadlines, such as report submissions, contract signings, and communications, are scheduled according to the defined COB.

Best Practices for Managing Close of Business

  • Clear Definition: Clearly define and communicate the COB time to all employees and external partners.
  • Consistency: Maintain consistency in COB times to avoid confusion and ensure smooth operations.
  • Adjustments: Consider adjusting COB times for different time zones if operating globally to accommodate all parties involved.


No, COB can vary by country based on local business practices and cultural norms.

They can adjust their schedules to overlap with the business hours of international clients or set clear expectations about response times.

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