# how much, how many, what percent

Suppose you are the leader of a team, and you want to ask about the progress made so far. Which of the following sentences is right, if any?

How many percent of the work is done?

How much percent of the work is done?

What percent of the work is done?

We use "how many" for countables like apples and "how much" for uncountables like sugar or milk. So, of the first two, this one is the better (but still wrong):

How many percent of the work is done?

We use the word percent only if it follows a number- 10%, five percent or whatever. If there is no number, we use the word percentage instead. See percent vs percentage for more information.

What percentage of the work is done?

See the last example here.

The answer is very simple, but to explain why it is so, is a little tricky.

The best option is:

"What percent of the work is done?"

or

"What percent of the work is complete?"

The first sentence doesn't sound right. Even though percentages are numbers, they are not something you would include as a countable term. Percentages account to an amount in or for every hundred. Now, when you ask how far has the work progressed to far, we usually use percentages to reply. This is not something you can count. It is statistical, but uncountable. To use 'many', we need something to count, for example:

• How many units of work is over?
• How many days worth work is over?
• How many modules are complete?

Try this thread. This talks about why percentages are uncountable even though they are countable.