Growing disconnect between pay and workplace effort, claims report

Exclusive polling undertaken by YouGov for Localis showed exactly half of those surveyed felt they were paid less than they deserved, a third (31 percent) paid roughly the right amount and 7 percent felt overpaid. The polling figures also indicated nearly two thirds (61 percent) of people felt unrewarded for hard work. The findings are contained in a report entitled ‘The Delivery of an Industrial Strategy – Raising prosperity across England’ which examines how strategic authorities, such as Mayoral Combined Authorities and county councils, can take the industrial strategy forward at a local level to raise local prosperity and living standards.

The report includes analysis which finds the relationship between productivity and wages varies significantly across the country. The report finds the five worst areas for wage growth relative to productivity growth in England over the last five years were:

  • Hounslow (London) – 55 percent increase in productivity, 11 percent rise in wages
  • Mendip (Somerset) – 22 percent increase in productivity, 10 percent drop in wages
  • Camden (London) – 33 percent increase in productivity, 2 percent rise in wages
  • Rushmoor (Hampshire)– 19 percent increase in productivity, 12 percent drop in wages
  • Three Rivers (Hertfordshire) – 37 percent increase in productivity, 7 percent rise in wages

By contrast, residents of the following five areas received the greatest increase in wage growth relative to gains in local productivity:

  • North Dorset – 8.8 percent increase in productivity, 31.3 percent rise in wages
  • Weymouth and Portland (Dorset) – 0.7 percent increase in productivity, 19 percent rise in wages
  • Wyre (Lancashire) – 3.7 percent increase in productivity, 18 percent increase in wages
  • East Dorset – 9.5 percent increase in productivity, 21.2 percent increase in wages
  • East Devon – 11 percent increase in productivity, 22 percent increase in wages

The report also argues Government’s choice to focus attention and resources for industrial strategy on three of the most-advanced areas of England – Greater Manchester, the West Midlands and the Oxford-Cambridge corridor – risks neglecting the economic fortunes of the bulk of England, including parts of the country being left behind by the rest of the economy.

The report is a follow up to last year’s report ‘The Making of an Industrial Strategy’ which found areas in more than two-thirds of England lacked governance structures with the strength and capacity to help deliver the Government’s national Industrial Strategy.

Jack Airey, head of research at Localis, said: “These figures show too often the relationship between the individual and the economy is broken, or seen to be broken, and too often works disproportionately better for some than others. Across the world, recent votes against the status-quo suggests this to be politically unsustainable for mainstream politics. Tackling many peoples’ estrangement with the economy should be a primary aim of current and future governments.”

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