Labour productivity statistics: 2021 Quarter 4

Annual and quarterly estimates of labour productivity for Scotland’s onshore economy up to the fourth quarter of 2021 (October to December).

This document is part of a collection

Main results

  • In 2021, annual labour productivity as measured by output per hour worked remained flat (0.0% growth) compared to 2020. This follows an increase of 0.2% in 2020.
  • In 2021 quarter 4, output per hour worked in Scotland has increase by 2.3% compared to the same quarter last year, and is 1.0% above pre-pandemic levels (2019 Quarter 4).
  • Although there have been rises and falls in quarterly productivity during the last two years, overall output per hours worked has increased slightly over the course of the coronavirus pandemic. This reflects the fact that the reduction in output during this time was largely mirrored by changes in the amount of hours worked during periods of lockdown and other restrictions on economic activity.
  • While output per hour worked remained relatively stable during the last two years, output per job has seen larger changes. This measure of productivity has increased by 8.7% in 2021, after a fall of 10.6% in 2020. This largely reflects the drop in average weekly hours during periods when workers were furloughed and economic activity was restricted.

Information about this release?

Labour productivity measures is the amount of economic output that is produced, on average, by each unit of labour input, and is an important indicator of economic performance.

This publication contains a brief summary of the key results from the latest productivity statistics, focussing in on the headline measures of change in output per hour worked.

Most of the key results are presented in volume (or real) terms, where the effect of price changes has been removed to allow for meaningful comparisons over time. All estimates are for Scotland’s onshore economy.


Full results including estimates of output per hour worked, output per job, current price productivity measures (not adjusted for price changes) and estimates of labour productivity by industry are available in the associated tables.

Labour productivity 2021 Quarter 4 - full publication
Labour productivity 2021 Quarter 4 - publication tables



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