Workers in US firms are 40% more productive than their UK counterparts, according to a report.
The Centre for Economic Performance at the London School of Economics suggested that the 17% higher spending on IT is behind the greater productivity in the US. It claimed that greater use of IT accounts for an overwhelming 80% of the productivity gains.
Fast-tracking talented staff and wider devolution of responsibility for IT resources have also widened the productivity gap.
These findings are backed up in a survey by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), which stated that US-owned firms in the UK are more successful at exploiting IT than other UK firms. IT accounts for much of their productivity advantage.
The ONS survey also made the connection between IT usage and performance. In UK manufacturing firms, for example, it noted over a 2% increase in productivity for every 10% of staff using the internet or computers. The rise is even sharper in newer firms.