In March, the EEF produced an interim report on US-UK manufacturing productivity (‘Lessons from Uncle Sam’), based on in-depth interviews with senior managers in manufacturing companies on both sides of the Atlantic. It highlighted the importance of improved productivity for UK manufacturing competitiveness and looked at reasons behind the productivity gap between US and UK manufacturing.
It emphasised a number of reasons for the gap and the lessons that UK firms could learn from the experience of their US counterparts. This final report has investigated further some of the issues raised in the main findings of the interim report. In particular, a survey has been conducted of 352 EEF member companies by NOP to provide further evidence on barriers to investment, the uptake of lean manufacturing, use of workplace initiatives and issues surrounding firms’ ability to attract the right people. Details of the sample are given in appendix 3.
In following up the work on the interim report, the EEF also discussed the issues raised widely with EEF member companies and committees, government, academics, consultants and other experts in the productivity field to draw on their experience and views. This report also draws on this work.