The Power of Productivity report, a new study written by, Dr. Alexander Grous from the London School of Economics and Political Science, identifies management best practice, technology and flexible working as three key levers which, when combined, have the power to unlock business productivity by as much as 20%.
The report, commissioned by Vodafone UK and undertaken by LSE, explores the UK’s productivity picture and draws upon a range of industry research as well as LSE interviews conducted with more than 20,000 businesses worldwide in 35 countries. It also highlights:
- That while an organisation’s location can have an influence on business performance, a more granular assessment of the organisation itself can unlock productivity gains regardless of where it is based;
- Many Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SME) are unaware of the options available or where to go for support to help them unlock productivity; and
- The ability of firms to periodically re-structure and re-align to respond to market changes is critical in order to survive future scenarios – an assessment of current practices is key to understanding where more agility is needed and where it can be achieved.
The research comes at a time when recent Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures show low productivity rates across the UK and the continuing struggle to match the productivity levels of G7 counterparts – the UK is currently in 6th place. The UK government also recently announced that raising productivity by just one per cent every year would add £250 billion to the size of the economy within a decade.
Dr Alexander Grous from LSE, said: “This study highlights the steps that organisations of all sizes in every corner of the UK can take to not only supercharge their productivity but also help improve the strength of the UK economy. From our findings, the best performing companies show that by combining good management thinking, technology and flexible working practices you can boost performance significantly.
“Taking this approach is also easier than many businesses think because the capabilities to move forward often already exist within the company. The first step is making the time to assess your business and identify where you can make improvements, with full support from the management team and organisation. The report provides some initial guidance on the questions that business leaders should ask.”
Phil Mottram, Enterprise Director at Vodafone UK, added: “There are levers that businesses can use to increase productivity in their organisation which give them the ability to be better prepared for the future. We have taken our own steps to transform the way we work, through our ‘Better Ways of Working’ initiative. We are also working closely with businesses and public services across the UK to support how they transform the way their people, processes and operations work through new thinking and productive technologies. However, there is clearly more to be done to help more businesses understand the options that are available to them. The findings of the report highlight the need for greater collaboration and sharing of best practice across industry and the public sector, to help organisations make faster gains. UK business will face opportunity and uncertainty over the coming years. It’s important that improving productivity is top of the agenda to make sure the UK is ‘ready for anything.”
– ends –
Notes to Editors
The Power of Productivity
Produced by, Dr Alexander Grous, LSE, the report reflects the latest publicly available ONS data and draws upon market studies and LSE research conducted since 2002, which has included over 20,000 interviews with firms, across 35 countries and four sectors. A copy of the report is available from LSE at http://www.lse.ac.uk/consultancy
Vodafone UK – Support for UK businesses
Vodafone partners with thousands of businesses and organisations, from start-ups and small businesses to the largest corporate firms and public sector bodies, providing a range of business communication and assessment services and solutions:
- Vodafone’s Ready Business Indicator is a simple, free online test available to help small and medium sized businesses to assess and benchmark some of their current practices and digital readiness.
- Vodafone UK also provides transformation advisory services to SME and large organisations through its Better Ways of Working and Borderless Working
- To support the UK’s digital infrastructure, Vodafone UK has invested more than £2 billion in its network and services since 2014 and expects to invest another £2 billion over the next three years.
- In April, Vodafone UK introduced a new regional business model to provide local digital transformation and technology expertise to businesses across the country.
About Vodafone UK
Vodafone is one of the world’s largest telecommunications companies and has mobile operations in 26 countries, partners with mobile networks in 52 more, and fixed broadband operations in 17 markets.
Vodafone UK has worked with UK businesses for over 30 years, starting out as a mobile provider and becoming one of the UK’s leading total communications partners. It provides a range of voice and data services, secure communications infrastructure, fixed and call centre capabilities, unified communications, cloud and hosting and Internet of Things (IoT) solutions and was the first mobile phone operator to offer a truly converged service for fixed and mobile. For more information please visit www.vodafone.co.uk
The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) is one of the foremost social science universities in the world. LSE is a specialist university with an international intake and a global reach. Its research and teaching span the full breadth of the social sciences, from economics, politics and law to sociology, anthropology, accounting and finance. Founded in 1895, the School has an outstanding reputation for academic excellence. Sixteen Nobel Prize winners have been LSE staff or alumni. The School has a cosmopolitan student body, with around 9,500 full time students from 140 countries. LSE has over 3,000 staff, with about 46 per cent drawn from countries outside the UK. For more information please visit www.lse.ac.uk
 LSE – The Power of Productivity: An assessment of UK Firms and Factors Contributing to Productivity Enhancement
 International Comparisons of Productivity – Final Estimates: 2014 – http://www.ons.gov.uk/economy/economicoutputandproductivity/productivitymeasures/bulletins/internationalcomparisonsofproductivityfinalestimates/2014