Majority of Canadian private companies aiming to improve productivity



    TORONTO, March 13 /CNW/ - Over 84% of Canadian private companies are
attempting to improve their productivity and include it as part of their
business strategy. However, according to the latest PricewaterhouseCoopers
(PwC) Business Insights Pulse Survey, only slightly more than half of them
(56.1%) actually have metrics to track their performance - the most critical
way to achieve results.
    The PwC Survey also found that the smaller the company is, the less
metrics they have and use to track productivity - likely due to lack of time,
resources and dollars.
    "It's not rocket science. Basically there are two ways to improve
performance. Make your people more productive or invest in technology and
equipment," says Eric Andrew, national leader for private company services
with PwC. "It should be a permanent, active part of the organization at all
levels."
    Interestingly, the PwC Pulse survey of 221 private company CEOs found
that despite the widely reported fact that Canadian productivity lags behind
the US, only 42.2% of Survey respondents are concerned about this gap. This
drops to 35.4% for companies with annual revenues of less than $10 million.
Regionally, BC respondents were the least concerned at 38.4%.
    Andrew notes, "Regardless of people's belief or not in a gap between
productivity rates of the two countries it's clearly in the interest of
Canadian companies to strive for improvement in our increasingly competitive
world."

    
    The following are themes that PwC sees as fundamental:

    -   Create a performance culture: The most successful organizations are
        those where performance is part of the culture, and where people from
        top to bottom are self-driven to achieve high-levels of performance.
    -   Focus on people effectiveness: Ultimately it all comes down to
        people - their capabilities and their effectiveness.
    -   Focus on revenue and innovation as well as cost: Top line growth is
        the real test of organizational health - cost cutting merely provides
        breathing room.
    -   Resource, manage and govern performance improvement initiatives
        properly: Don't undertake a major change initiative if you can't
        resource and manage it properly.
    -   Define and communicate objectives clearly, then empower people to do
        the job: Top-down direction with bottom-up execution enables bigger
        improvements that "stick". The communication battle is never-ending.
    -   Implement a balanced performance measurement system: Measuring
        performance effectively is the basis for ongoing improvement.
    -   Be obsessive about sustainability: Sustainability is not just about
        being corporately responsible; it is about ensuring value for the
        long term.
    

    This is the second in a series of Business Insight Pulse Surveys from PwC
that aim to provide snapshots of the current business environment and
sentiment for Canada's private companies. For more information please
www.pwc.com/ca/pulsesurvey or contact Carolyn Forest,
carolyn.forest@ca.pwc.com, 416-814-5730.

    PricewaterhouseCoopers (www.pwc.com) provides industry-focused assurance,
tax and advisory services to build public trust and enhance value for its
clients and their stakeholders. More than 140,000 people in 149 countries
across our network share their thinking, experience and solutions to develop
fresh perspectives and practical advice. Now celebrating 100 years of
excellence in Canada, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (www.pwc.com/ca) and its
related entities have more than 4,700 partners and staff in offices across the
country.
    "PricewaterhouseCoopers" refers to PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, Canada, an
Ontario limited liability partnership, or, as the context requires, the
PricewaterhouseCoopers global network or other member firms of the network,
each of which is a separate and independent legal entity.





For further information:

For further information: Carolyn Forest, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP,
(416) 814-5730, carolyn.forest@ca.pwc.com; Peter Zvanitajs,
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, (416) 941 8383 x 13408,
peter.zvanitajs@ca.pwc.com

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