Closing the productivity gap

A fascinating review of workplace productivity in the UK was published in December 2016. It taps into so much of what we are trying to achieve at Julius Rutherfoord. The Stoddart Review investigates why the office environment is key to productivity and how workplaces can contribute to the success of an organisation. According to the review, if just a one percent productivity gain could be achieved across the UK macroeconomy, it would add almost £20 billion to our national output.

Some of the review’s other findings include:

  • 91% of UK employees still work solely from the office;
  • Only one in two workers agree their workplace helps them to be productive;
  • The workplace has become a major differentiator in the attraction, development
    and retention of talent;
  • Progressive workplaces support care for the environment, promote green solutions, and the health and wellbeing of staff;
  • Progressive workplaces create a collaborative culture and a sense of community, increasing employee engagement;
  • An effective workplace can improve business productivity by as much as 3.5% - that could add up to £70 billion to the UK economy.

The report highlights how small rises in productivity are far from trivial. Here at Julius Rutherfoord we’ve known for some time that simple measures such as keeping a workplace clean and hygienic, and encouraging environmentally-friendly activities, can boost the health, morale and enthusiasm of a workforce.

Julius Rutherfoord is a winner of the Kimberly-Clark Professional Golden Service Healthy Workplace Award for our own head office – The Tramshed in Battersea, London.

The award recognises companies that have taken significant steps to provide a more hygienic office environment to help reduce sickness and increase employee wellbeing.

The Stoddart Review also shows that the interface between people, place and process should be the preserve of a specialist – the Chief Workplace Officer – with appropriate levels of access and influence.

At the same time, we have also been encouraging organisations to consider appointing a Health and Wellbeing Champion, or champions, to ensure that initiatives are communicated throughout the business and to encourage healthy workplace thinking.