UK productivity is lamentable

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nickel_and_dimed_1600_wht_6554British workers are a third less productive than their German and French counterparts. Last year they also fell behind the USA, Italy, and Canada.

They produced 20% less per hour than other members of the G7 countries (advanced economies) and had the worst results since records began in 1991 according to the National Statistics Office (NSO).

The Governor of the Bank of England describes productivity as the ultimate determinant of people’s incomes and with it the capacity of our economy to support health, wealth, and happiness”

Britain has fallen behind since the financial crisis with Germany, France and the USA all producing a third more last year. Italy produced 10% more and Canada 4% more. Only Japan produced less.

The TUC is worried thatWithout a step change in productive growth, the UK economy will struggle to deliver secure jobs and higher living standards”

There are signs that productivity is slowly increasing and unemployment here is lower than some EU countries. What the report doesn’t mention is the grey economy which our neighbours across the channel say is what attracts immigrants to our shores. If that work was factored in would it make a difference?

Hard to tell but with stress on the increase again and employee engagement figures well below 50% it’s hard to see how companies can encourage employees to work harder. After all that’s what productivity is; getting more out of workers for the same or fewer hours worked.