American workers are becoming less productive. Blame the pandemic.

Aug 8, 2022
It's a volatile indicator, but the trend has been downward.
Data on worker productivity in the second quarter is due to come out Tuesday, which could show continued declines as a result of the pandemic.
George Frey/Getty Images

What a dip in productivity tells us about the economy

May 5, 2022
For one thing, it's not helpful in the fight against inflation.
"Productivity is an escape hatch for inflation," said Sarah House, an economist at Wells Fargo.
Johannes Eisele/ AFP via Getty Images

New California law seeks transparency for workplace quotas

Dec 30, 2021
The law is aimed at large warehouse companies that use algorithms to manage worker productivity.
A new California law will require greater transparency from big warehouse operators, like Amazon, on how they use technology to track productivity. Above, a woman works at an Amazon packing station in 2019.
Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images

4-day workweek idea picks up steam, but questions remain

Jun 24, 2021
Kickstarter is the first company to sign on to a new campaign that aims to make the four-day workweek a reality. But would all workers benefit?
Kickstarter and other companies are experimenting with the four-day workweek to gather data on its impact.
Tatomm/iStock/Getty Images Plus

Businesses that have survived the pandemic are spending. On themselves.

Apr 21, 2021
Many businesses are pumping money into much-needed improvements, and that spending is rippling through the economy.
Some changes businesses made during the pandemic, including in the food industry, will improve operations over the long term.
Frederic J. Brown/AFP via Getty Images

U.S. productivity plummeted in Q4, and reopening the economy might be why

Mar 4, 2021
The measure fell at the steepest rate in 40 years, but that might not be as ominous as it sounds — if the trend is short term.
Less productive businesses like restaurants have started to reopen, which may be causing national productivity data to decline.
Scott Heins/Getty Images

The cost of sleep deprivation

Nov 23, 2020
A RAND study found that lack of sleep costs the U.S. about $411 billion a year in lost productivity.
Right now, more than a third of Americans are feeling anxious and losing sleep as a result, according to the most recent Marketplace-Edison Research Poll.
m-gucci/iStock via Getty Images

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Getting any work done? Election uncertainty drives distraction at work

Nov 5, 2020
The election has had a major effect on work productivity this year, with more people voting and paying attention to the results.
Jason Redmond/AFP via Getty Images

Sleepless nights are sapping productivity, exacerbating anxiety

May 7, 2020
It's not just you. Sleep has gotten weird for all of us.
A tired nurse at a hospital. Disrupted living is affecting how well people sleep.
Aris Oikonomou/AFP via Getty Images

Will the 2020s bring an end to the era of open offices?

Dec 31, 2019
Blamed for everything from decreased productivity to increased flu cases, the majority of workers hate them, a survey says.
Collaboration or constant distraction? Google employees work in an open office in Berlin in January.
Tobias Schwarz/AFP via Getty Images