BIS uses "carrot approach" to get businesses paying mimimum wage

The Government is using a "carrot rather than stick approach" in a three-month PR campaign intended to ensure more businesses are paying the national minimum wage, which this month went up 12p to £6.31 for adults.

National minimum wage: Forster will be targeting retail among other sectors
National minimum wage: Forster will be targeting retail among other sectors

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) has engaged Forster to encourage businesses, especially those in sectors with typically low pay, to change their behaviour.

Peter Gilheany, director at Forster, said: "There is a small but persistent problem in this area, and that’s because some businesses are confused by it, some are not aware of it and some simply aren’t complying with it. The campaign seeks to address this."

Using the slogan Spot The Difference, the campaign portrays the positive effects on staff retention and business reputation gained by complying with the minimum wage.

"Research indicates that a carrot – rather than stick – approach that encourages firms to comply is most likely to work, because a lot of it is based on simple confusion over the issue," Gilheany added.

Forster is working with unions, trade associations and online discussion forums covering traditionally low-paid sectors such as care, retail and cleaning.

The campaign is using materials such as video, infographics and social media.

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