Today the Department for Work and Pensions publishes research exploring reactions of claimants, other members of the public, employers and staff to Universal Credit proposals.
In total over 200 respondents in a range of circumstances were engaged through a mixture of focus groups, case studies and in-depth interviews. Research was conducted in six locations across Britain.
Findings from this research suggest there is broad consensus for the need for reform to the welfare and benefits system. There was support for the principles underpinning reform, in particular fairness and ‘making work pay’. Universal Credit was seen to demonstrate important progress, including the repositioning of work as an opportunity rather than a risk.
However, the research also aimed to understand any risks which could jeopardise the successful delivery of Universal Credit. Key areas of concern included around monthly payments and the security of the online channel. Further research will explore the issues identified in greater depth, to support the detailed system design of Universal Credit.
Notes to Editors:
DWP Research Report No. 778 “Perceptions of welfare reform and Universal Credit” is published on 7 October 2011.
The research was conducted on behalf of DWP by Jigsaw Research. The report authors are Monique Rotik and Luke Perry.