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[Summary] 2020 Workforce Productivity in the North America Banking Sector

Updated: Oct 22, 2020

This complimentary report provides workforce productivity and ROI benchmark analysis of 41 of the top 50 banks listed in North America between 2012 to 2019.


[Report] 2020 Workforce Productivity in the North America Banking Sector

Download this complimentary report here.


  • Labor costs are the single largest operating expense driving the cost-to-income-ratio (CIR) banking metric

  • Advanced metrics and measures used in the study link workforce investments to revenue and market value

  • Top 5 bank “Winners” grew in market cap by $20.5 Billion per bank on average vs flat market value for the others

  • In 2019, the gap between the top and bottom quartile banks increased by 33%.

  • Prior studies suggest talent management decisions before, during and after financial crises significantly impact the likelihood and speed of recovery from COVID-19


Workforce related expenses have been both the single largest contributor to non-interest expenses and the main driver behind rising operating expenses for all bank in recent years. Therefore, it’s important to understand the impact of human capital on business performance.

Between 2012 and 2019, the Banking sector in North America saw a large improvement in Revenue per FTE and Profit per FTE. However, this development has not been accompanied by improvement in cost-based measures of workforce productivity such as Human Capital ROI Ratio and Total Cost of Workforce per FTE.

Sector “winners” clocked an average of 5.4% productivity gains over the last 7 years and can be found in all sub-category within the Banking sector. And the gap between sector “winners” and “laggards” has also been widened. Within the sector, there are a few sector’s subcategories that clearly led the industry in terms of workforce productivity.

Growing Workforce Productivity gaps between top vs. middle vs bottom quartile
Workforce Productivity Trends (2012 - 2019)

While the COVID-19 pandemic deeply affected the banking sector, many studies have pointed out how talent management decisions before, during and after financial crises can significantly impact banks’ likelihood and speed of recovery.

For more details, click here to download the full complimentary report.

Recommended Reading

Linking Human Capital to Business Performance Whitepaper - Link

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