Publication - Research and analysis

Wider Payment of the Living Wage in Scotland – Issues for Consideration

Published: 27 May 2015
Part of:
Research
ISBN:
9781785442629

Reviews existing international research on impacts and practicalities of introducing the Living Wage and of promoting it through public contracts; and explores the views, experiences and suggestions for action of Scottish employers who have already introduced the Living Wage, Scottish Government contractors and stakeholder organisations.

95 page PDF

1.4 MB

95 page PDF

1.4 MB

Contents
Wider Payment of the Living Wage in Scotland – Issues for Consideration
Annex A: Topic Guides

95 page PDF

1.4 MB

Annex A: Topic Guides

Topic guide for Living Wage employers

INTRODUCTION

Introduce self and Ipsos MORI and thank participant for their time and for agreeing to take part.

Explain purpose of research: Ipsos MORI is conducting research on behalf of the Scottish Government to inform their approach to the Living Wage. The purpose of the research is to seek the views of a range of organisations towards the Living Wage.

We are interested in building an understanding of your organisation's experience of implementing the Living Wage. Please be assured that this is not a test and you are not being judged on compliance, we are just looking to get an accurate picture of the practicalities of introducing the Living Wage from an organisation's perspective.

  • Explain the interview should take around 60 minutes
  • Emphasise confidentiality and anonymity
  • Obtain permission to record

INTRODUCTION

  • To begin with, I'd like to ask a few questions about yourself and your organisation?
    • What is your position within the company?
    • How long have you been working for [ORGANISATION]?
    • What are the core activities of your organisation?
    • How many staff do you employ?

PRE-IMPLEMENTATION STAGE
EXPLAIN : I'd like to discuss the process in which your organisation went through to implement the Living Wage, starting at the beginning.

  • Could you please tell me about how your organisation first became aware of the Living Wage?
  • What was it that attracted you towards the Living Wage?
    • Probe : perceived advantages/benefits
  • At that stage, did you have any reservations about introducing the Living Wage?
    • Probe : perceived disadvantages/barriers
  • Did you seek out any information about the Living Wage at that stage?
    • If no, why not?
    • If yes, probe:
      • What type of information did you look for?
      • Where did you look for this information?
      • How easy or difficult was it to find information?
      • Did you find the information you were looking for? From where?
      • Did the information address your concerns?
  • Once you had the information you needed, what happened next?
    • Probe:
      • Did you seek further information?
      • What procedures did you follow?
  • Who would you say was responsible for driving the implementation of the Living Wage?
    • Probe: Senior management / HR / staff
  • Did anyone in the organisation oppose the introduction of the Living Wage?
    • Probe: Senior management / HR / staff
  • Were there any concerns regarding the introduction of the Living Wage?
    • IF YES probe:
      • What were those concerns?
      • How, if at all, were they addressed?
  • When did your organisation introduce the Living Wage?
  • Roughly what proportion of staff had their pay increased in line with the Living Wage?

IMPLEMENTATION STAGE

  • Overall, how did you find the process of introducing the Living Wage within your organisation?
  • What, if anything, would you say aided the implementation of the Living Wage?
    • Probe: existing/new procedures; attitudes of management/staff
  • What, if anything, made the implementation of the Living Wage more difficult?
    • Probe: Existing/new procedures; attitudes of management/staff; bureaucracy; administration costs/time;
  • What measures, if any, were taken to overcome these difficulties?
    • Probe: were any consequential changes made to enable implementation of Living Wage, e.g. financial personnel package or service levels.
  • Did you receive any support from external organisations, for example, the Living Wage foundation?
    • If Yes, probe:
      • In what form was this support provided?
      • Did you find it useful or not?
  • In what ways, if at all, is your organisation assessing the impact of the Living Wage within the organisation?
    • PROBE FOR DETAILS OF ANY OBJECTIVE EVIDENCE USED: e.g. financial costs/benefits; staff morale/performance/productivity/absenteeism; staff survey results
  • Has your organisation received accreditation for adopting the Living Wage?
    • IF YES, PROBE: type of accreditation; when this was awarded
    • IF No, PROBE: why not
  • What benefits, if any, has this accreditation provided?

POST-IMPLEMENTATION

  • What, if anything, would you say have been the positive impacts of introducing the Living Wage?
    • PROBE: on staff; management; reputation
  • What, if anything, would you say have been the negative impacts of introducing the Living Wage?
    • Probe: on staff; management; reputation; cost
  • What measures, if any, has the organisation undertaken to mitigate these negative impacts?
    • Probe: procedures; communication
  • If you were going to implement the Living Wage again, what, if anything, would you do differently?
  • As you may know, the Living Wage rate is periodically uprated to reflect changing price levels and living standards. How has your organisation found it to keep up with increases to the Living Wage?
  • Unlike the National Minimum Wage, the Living Wage is not differentiated by age. In what way, if at all, has the implementation of the Living Wage affected your recruitment of workers under the age of 20?
  • How likely would you be to recommend adopting the Living Wage to other organisations?
  • What, if anything, could be done to support the future roll out of the LW?

Thank respondent and close

TOPIC GUIDE FOR SCOTTISH GOVERNMENT CONTRACTORS

INTRODUCTION

Introduce self and Ipsos MORI and thank participant for their time and for agreeing to take part.

Explain purpose of research: Ipsos MORI is conducting research on behalf of the Scottish Government to inform their approach to the Living Wage. The purpose of the research is to seek the views of a range of organisations towards the Living Wage.

We are interested in gaining an understanding of organisations' perceptions on the Living Wage. Please be assured that this research is being undertaken independently from the Scottish Government and any commercial tenders which you have submitted or intend to submit in the future.

  • Explain the interview should take around 30 minutes
  • Emphasise confidentiality and anonymity
  • Obtain permission to record
  • Check that they received and read the information sheet

INTRODUCTION

  • To begin with, I'd like to ask a few questions about yourself and your organisation?
    • What is your position within the company?
    • How long have you been working for [ORGANISATION]?
    • What are the core activities of your organisation?
    • How many staff do you employ?

PERCEPTIONS OF THE LIVING WAGE

  • Prior to this interview, to what extent, if at all, were you aware of the Living Wage?
  • What is your overall impression of the Living Wage?
  • Have you sought any information about the Living Wage?
    • If no, why not?
    • If yes, probe:
      • What type of information did you look for?
      • Where did you look for this information?
      • From which sources did you seek information?
      • How easy or difficult was it to find information?
      • Did you find the information you were looking for? From where?
      • Did the information address your concerns?
  • Has your organisation considered implementing the Living Wage?
    • IF NO, PROBE: Why not?
    • IF YES, PROBE: Why? What happened?
  • What, if anything, would you say are the main advantages of implementing the Living Wage?
    • PROBE: staff morale; productivity; reputational benefits; attracting talent
  • What, if anything, would you say are the main disadvantages of implementing the Living Wage?
    • PROBE: cost; administration
  • What do you see as the main barriers to your organisation adopting the Living Wage?
    • PROBE: costs; lack of willingness from senior management; remaining competitive
  • What, if anything, do you think would help your organisation implement the Living Wage if it wanted to?
    • PROBE: support/information; evidence of impacts; government incentives
  • Do you think the introduction of the Living Wage would be something that your organisation would consider in the future?

PROMOTING THE LIVING WAGE THROUGH PROCUREMENT

  • How, if at all, do you think the Scottish Government could promote the Living Wage to organisations like yours?
  • How would you feel about the use of procurement policies to encourage contractors to implement the Living Wage, for example, by encouraging contractors tendering for public sector contracts to pay their staff the Living Wage?
  • If public bodies were to stipulate that contractors tendering for public sector contracts should be encouraged to pay their staff the Living Wage, what impact, if any, do you think this would have on:
    • competition in the sector?
    • the cost of the contracts? [probe how any additional costs would be borne and by whom]
    • the quality of the goods or services?
    • wage costs in the sector?
    • the viability of some businesses in the sector?
    • the likelihood of organisations bidding for public sector work?

[PROBE FOR EVIDENCE THAT VIEWS ARE BASED ON]

  • And what impact, if any, do you think this would have on your organisation, with regards to:
    • wage costs?
    • recruitment or retention of staff?
    • employees' motivation and commitment?
    • staff conditions, for example, the hours staff work; employee benefits

[PROBE FOR EVIDENCE THAT VIEWS ARE BASED ON]

  • What impact, if any, do you think this would have on your organisations willingness to employ younger people?
  • Do you think it would be appropriate to promote the payment of the Living Wage in all public contracts or only contracts of a specific type or value?
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

Thank respondent and close


Contact

Email: Alison Stout