How Productive Are Canadians?

July 31st, 2013 Posted in Canada|Beyond

Canada's Productivity

Canada’s Productivity

A recent report “The Future of Productivity” published by professional services firm Deloitte looked at productivity in Canada compared some other parts of the world. Today, I will go over some highlights from that report.

How does Canada compare to other parts of the world? We are productive and growing fast, but not as fast as some other nations. For example, from 2001 to 2009 Canada’s productivity growth was far below Australia’s and even from small countries like Austria and Israel. An average American worker generates $13 more per hour than a Canadian worker, a Norwegian worker generates $29 more, and an Australian worker generates $2 more. Countries like Korea and Russia sit on top of productivity growth, while countries like Switzerland and Denmark sit at the bottom.

When it comes to launching new start-ups, Canada has one of the highest levels of launching fast-growing companies by entrepreneurs. However, in terms of holding onto those start-ups, Canada is lagging behind. Canadian firms are not investing enough in R&D (Research and Development), which is essential to sustain growth and expansion. The top five OECD countries to invest in R&D are Israel, Korea, Finland, Japan, and Korea. The bottom five countries are Turkey, Slovak Republic, Poland, Mexico, and Chile. Canada sits somewhere in the middle and ranks below OECD average.

One interesting fact is that one in three Canadian companies do not know or understand that they are underinvesting in research and development, and in machinery and equipment that are vital for sustainability and growth. The full report The Future of Productivity – A wake-up call for Canadian companies can be accessed on Deloitte Canada website.

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