If what you are refering to is the element on an electric stove, that heating element is designed to radiate heat. The element connects in such a way that no current can circulates as it provides only heat.
I'm not clear as to whether or not you are actually asking about a problem in the second part of your question or just highlighting a measured inefficiency.
However, the relative inefficency of 1000w/400w (40%) is not unusual. The material used in heating elements is inexpensive but practical as it doesn't conduct electricity. If the heating element was made of a different material (other than say nichrome wire), the heat transfer might be far higher but cost far more or wear out quicker.
In case I've not handled this explanation well, read info at this link: