Search the site by keyword


Table of contents

Productivity matters for wellbeing

• Achieving higher productivity improves our overall wellbeing, by increasing the nation’s incomes and our ability to produce and afford the goods and services that underpin a happy, healthy life.
• This allows us to invest in public goods and services that benefit everyone, such as schools, hospitals, and infrastructure.
• Improved productivity also enables us to enjoy more time with family, whānau, friends
and community, spend more on improved collective wellbeing, and pursue social and environmental goals.
• The distribution – across and within groups and communities around the rohe – of the gains from higher productivity also matters for individual and overall wellbeing.

3 smiling people - 1 adult and 2 children with 2 more children in the background

The choices we make today influence the productivity, standard of living, waiora, and wairua, tomorrow, and for future generations.

Productivity requires a long-term commitment and innovation and investment are key

• Aotearoa New Zealand’s current productivity is built on decades of investment – in skills, knowledge, ICT, infrastructure, relationships, and the environment.
• Improving productivity requires efforts (investments) to maintain, enhance and improve the capabilities and qualities of the range of productive factors, institutional arrangements, and resources on our watch.
• Innovation and technological change are critical to productivity growth.
• The Government’s efforts need to be focused, aligned, well connected to businesses, iwi, Māori, researchers, and workers, and well evaluated, to enable learning and adaption.

Tane Mahuta Kauri

We have a responsibility to those who follow us to preserve, protect and restore the natural and social capital that is a cornerstone of our wellbeing.

It's about working smarter, not harder!

New Zealand’s economic growth was driven by increasing labour input in the two decades prior to COVID-19

Summary top graph

New Zealanders work more hours and produce less than most OECD countries

Summary bottom graph



Explore the numbers for yourself with our visualisation tool: