Last updated: 14.08.15

Work quality 'key to increasing productivity'

A new report has revealed that the quality of work, rather than the number of workers, is the key to boosting productivity among UK organisations.

The research, conducted by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and entitled 'Productivity: Getting the Best out of People', set out to investigate why some businesses are more productive than others.

The findings revealed a link between an employee's performance levels and the way in which they are managed - in essence, more effective management skills led to greater levels of productivity.

What's more, the report found that businesses that place a core focus on high-quality products and services rather than simply on low cost have greater performance levels. This was the same for organisations where workplace culture is aligned with the future direction of the business.

The CIPD is calling on the government to invest in vocational and further education, as well as skills funding and providing better support to businesses. The professional body believes this will encourage more agile working practices and enable organisations to move into higher value market segments.

Mark Beatson, chief economist at the CIPD and author of the report, said: "Productivity in the UK is noticeably low, especially when compared to other developed economies.

"The reasons behind the UK’s poor performance are deep-rooted and complex. Government investment is vital to increasing productivity, but it needs to be broad-based. 

"Big investments in infrastructure like HS2 will not be enough on their own. Decisions over how we fund vocational and further education and support small businesses to raise their game and get more out of their people are just as critical to our future prosperity as investments in transport, infrastructure and technology and need to be given more attention by government and businesses."

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