Australia is ranked outside the world's top 10 competitive nations, dragging its heels on productivity and cost efficiency, a global workforce consultant says.
New Zealand leads the way in the new ManpowerGroup Solutions Total Workforce Index, which measures the ease of sourcing, hiring and retaining workers across 75 countries, followed by Hong Kong and Singapore.
Australia ranked 11th.
Releasing the index on Sunday, ManpowerGroup Solutions Australia general manager Jamie Butterworth says while Australia has established itself as a competitive and desirable market for employers, there is still much work to be done.
Productivity growth in Australia has remained relatively low over recent years in association with low wages growth, and the report suggests this and high operating costs are a potential disincentive for employers to enter or increase their presence in the Australian market.
"We must find renewed enthusiasm for productivity growth, which is essential for a country that desires to be a high wage economy," Mr Butterworth said.
"Without productivity growth, Australia will simply price itself out of the market.
ManpowerGroup Solutions Total Workforce Index
(Measures ease of sourcing, hiring and retaining workers across 75 countries)
1 New Zealand
2 Hong Kong
4 United States
7 United Kingdom
8 United Arab Emirates