Productivity is the single most important determinant of a province and country’s prosperity. In very general terms, productivity measures how efficiently products and services are produced. Historically, New Brunswick’s productivity performance in manufacturers has been relatively lackluster; consistently ranking ninth out of ten provinces. In support of its refreshed mandate, ONB has prioritized productivity improvement as a key driver that will help New Brunswick businesses increase their competitiveness and overall profitability.

Improving our region’s productivity is vital to our province’s long-term prosperity. New Brunswick companies need to innovate and embrace new technologies if we are to remain competitive in the global marketplace. It is no longer a “nice to do”, it is increasingly imperative that companies are making impactful investments for their future.

Productivity NB Initiative

ONB, via its Productivity NB Initiative, is committed to providing clients with proactive support focused on productivity enhancements, growth, sustainability, and competitiveness. The initiative, unrolled in 2021 via ONB’s Business Growth Team, is geared toward manufacturing clients. It includes benchmarking and assessing company productivity levels on an annual basis to provide a tailored approach and guidance on their path to productivity improvement and for competing globally.

Our Approach

The methodology used to both benchmark and assess the productivity level of the New Brunswick-based manufacturers was inspired and guided by the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC). ONB has developed a new tool, called the Productivity Maturity Index (PMI), Here’s how the process works:

1. BENCHMARK: The PMI tool calculates and compares four financial ratios of manufacturing companies to their Canadian industry peers – revenue per employee, profit per employee, labour productivity, and cost of production.

2. ASSESS: The assessment consists of a series of business-related questions that will help generate a detailed report related to productivity performance as well as an overall score that ranks current company productivity levels as low, medium, or high.

3. CHART: The detailed report will inform the development of a productivity roadmap that will outline priorities, goals, suggested action items, and resources available to support any potential transformations.

Productivity-Focused Success Stories

There are many positive stories from local companies that are reaping the benefits of following through with productivity and technology improvements. As always, ONB is keen to share good news stories and this week, we launch three more:

Enflo Canada in Grand Falls continues to see growth thanks to a focus on productivity. CEO/CMO Mark Lamoureaux says that thanks to its many productivity upgrades, Enflo has been able to grow its sales and profits by double digits over the past two calendar years. Read their story here.

New Brunswick staple Crosby Molasses Company may have launched in 1879, but they stay current on new technology.  President James Crosby says ONB support has helped the company launch multiple projects as part of a big productivity focus. Read their story here.

JMN Enterprises Ltd of Saint-François-de-Madawaska continues to grow its business and its workforce thanks in part to productivity enhancements. “We have made several great investments in automation equipment including a scanner, cut-to-size sawing line, automatic glue clamp carrier, and CNC cutting tables,” notes CEO Jean-Francois Landry. “All this coupled with improving our information technology solutions has made all of our growth possible over the past few years.” Read their story here.

Get Started with ONB Support

Wondering where to start or what productivity means within the context of your business? Companies can work directly with their regional ONB Business Development Executive (BDE) who will provide an overview of the PMI tool and the process, and what results may be obtained from the assessment. BDEs are here to support and facilitate the entire process and provide guidance and partner connections to position your business for that next level of success.