Worsening heart failure (HF) is associated with shorter left ventricular systolic ejection time (SET), but there are limited data describing the relationship between SET and clinical outcomes. Thus, the objective was to describe the association between SET and clinical outcomes in an ambulatory HF population irrespective of ejection fraction (EF). We identified ambulatory patients with HF with reduced EF (HFrEF) and HF with preserved EF (HFpEF) who had an outpatient transthoracic echocardiogram performed between August 2008 and July 2010 at a tertiary referral centre. Multivariable logistic regression was used to evaluate the association between SET and 1-year outcomes. A total of 545 HF patients (171 HFrEF, 374 HFpEF) met eligibility criteria. Compared with HFpEF, HFrEF patients were younger [median age 60 years (25th-75th percentiles 50-69) vs. 64 years (25th-75th percentiles 53-74], with fewer females (30% vs. 56%) and a similar percentage of African Americans (36% vs. 35%). Median (25th-75th percentiles) EF with HFrEF was 30% (25-35%) and with HFpEF was 54% (48-58%). Median SET was shorter (280 ms vs. 315 ms, P < 0.001), median pre-ejection period was longer (114 ms vs. 89 ms, P < 0.001), and median relaxation time was shorter (78.7 ms vs. 93.3 ms, P < 0.001) among patients with HFrEF vs. HFpEF. Death or HF hospitalization occurred in 26.9% (n = 46) HFrEF and 11.8% (n = 44) HFpEF patients. After adjustment, longer SET was associated with lower odds of the composite of death or HF hospitalization at 1 year among HFrEF but not HFpEF patients. Longer SET is independently associated with improved outcomes among HFrEF patients but not HFpEF patients, supporting a potential role for normalizing SET as a therapeutic strategy with systolic dysfunction.