- Promoting and building a culture of productivity among private and public companies, is the focus of the Jamaica Productivity Centre (JPC), in line with the goals spelled out in Vision 2030 - Jamaica's National Development Plan.
- Director at the JPC, Charles Douglas, informs JIS News that the Centre conducts research and measurements to determine the level of productivity regarding companies islandwide.
- “We measure the agricultural, construction, trade and distribution sectors. We also conduct measurements on labour and capital productivity at the enterprise level,” he adds.
Promoting and building a culture of productivity among private and public companies, is the focus of the Jamaica Productivity Centre (JPC), in line with the goals spelled out in Vision 2030 – Jamaica’s National Development Plan.
Director at the JPC, Charles Douglas, informs JIS News that the Centre conducts research and measurements to determine the level of productivity regarding companies islandwide.
“We measure the agricultural, construction, trade and distribution sectors. We also conduct measurements on labour and capital productivity at the enterprise level,” he adds.
He says that the JPC, which falls under the Ministry of Labour and Social Security (MLSS), assists companies to improve the quality and service of their businesses, for example, customer service, which is a crucial element to productivity.
“It is quite difficult to look at productivity without looking at quality, so in all instances productivity results in quality,” he says.
With this in mind, he argues that the JPC aims to ensure that all businesses in Jamaica achieve optimum productivity by 2030. Mr. Douglas adds that in order to achieve this objective by 2030, the JPC will be examining the internal issues affecting various organizations.
He explains that if an organisation is operating inadequately, the JPC is mandated to conduct an audit to address the issue, to enable greater efficiency.
The Director says that customers are willing to pay for quality products and services, so companies should constantly seek to improve the quality of their products and services to achieve greater profitability.
“Training persons in the business community is a central focus of the JPC, because we want to see greater results in relation to productivity,” he tells JIS News.
He informs that the JPC recently launched a National Workplace Productivity Champions Programme, in collaborationwith the Hugh Lawson Shearer Trade Union Educational Institute at the University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona campus.
“We intend to recruit and train persons from both the private and public sectors as productivity champions. The programme will equip persons with information about all aspects of productivity, so they can impart the knowledge acquired to their respective organisations,” he notes.
This, Mr. Douglas says, is essential to any organisation, and to the development of the country’s overall productivity, because productivity is consistent with a stable macro economy, which helps to create Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth and reduce poverty.
He also mentions a partnership with the Japan International Co-operation Agency (JICA), which is also helping to enhance the level of productivity in Jamaica. He further adds that this partnership was sanctioned in 2011, and a productivity expert was brought in to assist the Centre to conduct productivity training exercises for both private and public sector companies.
The Director says the Centre has been constantly trying to build its capacity to effectively serve the business community, and by extension the country.
“We have capitalised on several opportunities to send staff members at the JPC to Japan and Singapore for training. This has helped us to strengthen our own technical capacity to further enhance the capacity of both private and public sector companies,” he tells JIS News.
Mr. Douglas says the Centre is mindful that micro, small and medium size businesses account for a large percentage of employment in Jamaica, hence a lot of its technical services will be directed at those businesses for 2012.
He informs that work has already begun, and the JPC will be working closely with the Small Business Association of Jamaica (SBAJ) to provide technical training sessions to improve the productivity of businesses across the island. In addition, he points out that the JPC will be staging several workshops in 2012.
The JPC was established in April 2004, with tripartite partners being the Government of Jamaica, the Jamaica Confederation of Trade Unions (JCTU), and the Jamaica Employers Federation (JEF).