Evaluation of the Wellbeing Premium Programme

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Background

Good employee health and wellbeing is of key importance to employers and the economy. Yet, many businesses find it hard to invest in the health and wellbeing of their employees, or do not invest at all. These problems are especially true for small and medium size enterprises (SMEs). There has been considerable interest in the effect of financial incentives to stimulate change in the workplace environment but evidence is limited.

The West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) is running a randomised controlled trial of a financial incentive programme to improve employee health and wellbeing in SMEs in the West Midlands.

Goals

RAND Europe and the University of Warwick have been commissioned by the WMCA to conduct an evaluation of the Wellbeing Premium Programme. The primary aim of the study is to establish whether SMEs will improve their health and wellbeing and achieve higher employee awareness and participation in response to a financial incentive offer. The evaluation also aims to assess whether such premiums help and motivate SMEs to overcome barriers when aiming to improve the wellbeing of their employees.

Methodology

This study includes:

  • A recruitment evaluation carried out by RAND Europe in order to better understand reasons behind companies’ decisions to participate in the programme, as well as barriers, motivators and enablers that influence the success or otherwise of recruitment to the programme. Data collection will involve short telephone interviews with non-participating organisations.
  • A process evaluation carried out by RAND Europe and the University of Warwick in order to explain how the programme was implemented and to understand why behavioural change did or did not take place as expected within participating SMEs. Data collection will involve telephone and face-to-face interviews with employers and employees participating in the trial.
  • An impact evaluation to be carried out by the University of Warwick in order to measure the efficacy of the programme.