Research Innovation & Statistics (RIS)

The functions of the research innovation & statistics unit include generation of productivity and competitiveness specific research, publishing research reports, productivity statistics and case studies, as well as conducting seminars and disseminates information to various business entities including government. The objective of the research unit is to provide decision makers in various enterprises with information and knowledge to improve the competitiveness and productivity of economic sectors.


Research Reports

• Description (Role)
Productivity SA’s research is guided by a research agenda which is coordinated by the Research Department and updated annually. The research agenda sets out priority areas to guide the research outputs in line with Productivity SA’s Strategic Plan. The goal of the Research Department is to position Productivity SA as independent and credible custodian of productivity and competitiveness information while also providing research support to the flagship programmes (CIS, BT&R) of the organisation to deliver on the mandate of the organisation in terms of the Employment Services Act (No 4 of 2014).

• Research focus areas
The research department conducts research in the productivity of priority economic sectors, with the view to contribute towards national policy strategic objectives. Th research reports provides decision makers in various enterprises with information and knowledge to improve the competitiveness and productivity of economic sectors.

• Research output
The research output undertaken by the Research Department includes: (i) sector research on productivity and competitiveness (ii) international benchmarking of productivity strategies and impact; (iii) public sector productivity (iv) impact studies on interventions of Productivity SA flagship programmes and (v) facilitating seminars to share best productivity processes. In order to ensure high quality and relevant research is produced, the research output is subjected to the scrutiny of the Research Reference Team (RRT). The RRT is a mechanism of peer review for the research work produced. The RRT is a panel of Productivity SA staff with various skills and experience (including an external expert) chosen to review research projects in order to ensure alignment and consistency with organisation strategic objectives.

• Users
Policy makers, business leaders, labour federations and industry chambers use productivity research in decision making as it provides them with evidence-based analysis on the productivity and competitiveness performance of different sectors of the economy. Productivity research assists with knowledge and information making the country to be productive and competitive, to contribute to wealth creation, job creation, and reduction of income inequality and poverty. The research produced by Productivity SA is in accordance with the strategic objectives of its stakeholders, which include: Government, Business and Labour.

Knowledge & Innovation management is mandated by the provisions of Employment Service Act 4 of 2014 section 32 (e) to maintain a database of productivity and competitiveness systems and to publicise these systems internally and externally

Productivity SA as knowledge organisation foster knowledge sharing culture by encouraging its employees to interact with one another by subscribing to SECI (Socialization, Externalization, Combination, and Internalization) model linking it to Knowledge Management processes. Knowledge is created and applied, and this then leads to innovation, products, and services.

Knowledge & Innovation management therefore manages the total knowledge assets of the Productivity SA for easy storage, retrieval, reuse, and continuous improvement of the assets.

Information Centre
Productivity SA Information Centre has a comprehensive collection of books, reports and articles on productivity and management related subject areas.
The Information Centre stock comprises of the following:
• Books and journals
• Productivity related Articles
• Productivity SA Research Reports
• A small collection of tapes and audio-visual material
• Variety of reference works.

The Information Centre is intended for use by Productivity SA staff and external users. External users can only use the material in the Information Centre, or they may request information through email and telephone

For more information please contact:


Productivity Statistics

• Description
Productivity statistics report is an annual statistical publication of productivity trends. It is compiled by Productivity SA and is designed to be a reference document for everyone interested in the economic sector and industry productivity trends. The annual productivity measurement initiative of Productivity SA it’s in accordance with the strategic objectives of its stakeholders, which include: Government, Business and Labour. The detailed productivity measurement report also highlights the overall impact of productivity changes on sustainability and competitiveness of companies within all the economic sectors of South Africa. The report makes use of information and aggregate data mainly provided by Statistics SA (Stats SA) and the South African Reserve Bank (SARB). The methodology used in the calculation of the productivity indices are in line with those that are recommended by the internationally recognised institutions, such as the Organisation for Cooperation and Development’s (OECD) Manual: Measuring Productivity (2015).

• Variables
Productivity statistics report constitutes a descriptive statistical analysis measuring the productivity performance of total economy, the 3 main sectors, the 10 main industries as well as the 8 selected manufacturing sub sectors in South Africa. Productivity measures the ability of the economy to produce output, i.e. goods and services, using inputs, i.e. Labour input and Capital input. An increase in productivity means that, among others, more output is produced using similar amounts of inputs. The increase in Productivity that is not due to Labour and Capital inputs arise from technological progress and innovation, or multifactor productivity. The following are the Productivity measures of interest in this publication, Labour productivity, Capital productivity, Multifactor productivity, Capital Labour ratio as well as Unit labour cost.

• Users
Policy makers, business leaders, labour federations and academics use the productivity statistics to determine the changes in efficiency, the effects of technological improvements, changes in production costs and competitiveness, predict employment and prices in different industries, negotiate wages as well as for research purposes. Productivity statistics ultimately enables the policy makers, business leaders and academics to recognise the factors that affect business performance in terms of the efficient resource allocation and hence the ability of business to contribute to employment, income and the country’s prosperity.

IMD Statistics

• Description
The Institute for Management Development (IMD) World Competitiveness Yearbook (WCY) is an annual report on the competitiveness of selected countries and is recognised internationally as the leading survey of competitiveness between nations. The annual yearbook rates the ability of 63 industrialised and emerging economies to create and maintain an environment that sustains the competitiveness of enterprises. According to the Institute for Management Development (IMD), “Competitiveness refers to such an objective: It determines how countries, regions and companies manage their competencies to achieve long term growth, generate jobs and increase welfare.” Thus the Institute for Management Development (IMD) competitiveness report ranks countries based on their ability to create a competitive business environment and, as a result, foster prosperity and generate higher incomes for their citizens.

• Variables
The Institute for Management Development (IMD) World Competitiveness Yearbook (WCY) measures the competitiveness of countries using about 346 variables which are grouped into 4 Factors, 20 sub factors. The factors comprise Economic performance, Business efficiency, Government performance, Infrastructure. The 346 variables constitute 2/3 hard data from international and national sources as well as 1/3 executive opinion survey. The 346 variables for each of the 63 countries span both the economic and social indicators.

• Users
Global competitiveness statistics are both a tool and an objective of economic policy and provide a framework to quantify the outcome of addressing the challenges from a country perspective. They are used by the business community to assess national environments in an open and global world where location is important for companies to thrive hence, they are a useful tool to determine investment plans and location assessments. Policy makers use the global competitiveness statistics to benchmark the success of its economic and social policies against those of other countries. Academia uses the competitiveness statistics to understand and analyse how nations compete in world markets. Global competitiveness statistics ultimately allows policy makers, business leaders and academics to recognise the factors that facilitate their countries’ prosperity.

Sorry, there currently are no articles available. Please check back again soon!