L'auteur précise les relations qui existent entre les hausses de salaires reliées à des facteurs personnels et celles qui sont reliées à la hausse générale de la productivité. Cet article comprend deux parties : l'une théorique où l'auteur démontre que les hausses de la productivité générale sont indépendantes de l'amélioration du rendement individuel, et l'autre statistique où à l’aide d’un graphique il dégage l’importance relative de ces deux effets.
The Relative Importance of Personal and General Factors in Wage Policies
In this paper, we discuss the relation which exists between the increase in salaries which are related to professional achievement, on one hand, and the one which is related to the general increase of the productivity of the economy, on the other hand.
It had been sometimes argued that the increase in the productivity of the economy is the result of the increase in the professional efficiency of the workers. In this paper, we reject this theory. Within the assumption of a permanent population, we show that the increase in professional qualifications which characterizes the major part of the labor force is counterbalanced by the diminution of the effective professional qualification of the rest of the labor force. For example, we expect that professional workers from 25 to 40 in age increase their efficiency, but on the other hand there is a loss in qualification at the other end of the age pyramid due to the retirement of a part of the labor force or to the diminution in efficiency. We used a diagram to show that on the whole, the loss in qualification counterbalances the increase in qualification.
So in the absence of structural changes, the dynamic process of the change in personnal qualifications does not result in an increase in the total stock of qualification of the labor force. In the French text we show that to allow for structural changes or relax the permanent population hypothesis does not materially alter our conclusions. So we conclude that when individuals increase their personnal proficiency this does not mean that the total stock of qualification increase by the same token.
And in the general case we can show that the total stock of personnal qualification of the labor force is stable even though all individuals, which are say below 45 in age, increase their own qualification.
But at the same time we know that there is, in general, an increase in the productivity of the economy. So we conclude that the increase of the productivity of the economy is independant of the total stock of qualification or the increase in professional qualification of members of the labor force.
The conclusion that we may drawn from these propositions is that the total increase in the effectiveness of an individual is the sum of his increase in personnal or professional efficiency and the increase in the productivity of the economy. Then the annual increase in salaries should be made of two parts : one coming from his own increase in professional achievement and the other from the general increase of the productivity of the economy.
We illustrate this last proposition with a very simple diagram which appears in the French text. Be two curves : one is a cross section of the incomes by age groups in 1960 and the second is the cross section of the incomes by age group in 1970. Be an individual, age 25 in 1960. Point A indicates the income of this individual, in 1960. Now in1970, the individual who was 25 in 1960, will earn an income which is indicated by point B on the diagram.
The increase in income over ten years is indicated by the path A B. The passage from A to B is the result of two effects : In 1970, the individual is ten years older, so there is an increase from A to C which is the effect of age : increase in efficiency due to more experience, also, all incomes have moved from the cross section (1960) to the cross section (1970), so there is the passage from C to B which is due to the general increase of the productivity of the economy. So this diagram illustrates the fact that the total wage increment comes from an increase in professional efficiency and a general increase in productivity.