Study Shows Not Paying the Living Wage Could Deter Customers

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3rd July 2014 17:47 - Public Consultation

A study, carried out with over 1,000 UK people, has shown that over half of the respondents questioned would change their shopping habits to avoid stores that do not pay the Living Wage.

Most of the survey’s participants believe the nation’s economic growth should equate to improved wages, with many agreeing that the lowest paid workers should be prioritised.

Over half (51%) of those surveyed said they would be willing to pay higher prices if the additional fee went directly into employees’ pockets, with four in 10 stating they would shop elsewhere if their preferred store did not pay the Living Wage. Less than one sixth (13%) believe employers should be entitled to pay what they want, and therefore would not alter their shopping habits.

The study highlighted a strong overall consensus that paying the Living Wage, as opposed to the Minimum Wage, would result in greater productivity and performance. Just over six in 10 (61%) believed that if customer facing employees, such as restaurant, pub and hotel staff, received the Living Wage, customer service would be improved.

In addition, four out of five respondents said people should not have to work in excess of 60 hours a week in order to earn enough to survive, believing that additional hours would equate to reduced morale and output.

Furthermore, 66% of the survey’s sample felt the UK economy had recovered sufficiently enough to warrant wage increases for the lowest paid workers – over two thirds (70%) said that the lowest paid staff should reap wage benefits first.

Almost three fifths (56%) said they would not take a job with a company that did not pay the Living Wage, with less than one in 10 (8%) stating they did not care what others earn.

Just over one fifth (21%) believe the government should impose set pay levels, while 58% felt employers should be encouraged to pay the Living Wage, but not forced.

This research was conducted by KPMG.

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