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Tomorrow's People is a national employment charity that works with those facing multiple barriers to employment and equips them with the skills and confidence they need to get and keep a job. The charity approached Pro Bono Economics to undertake an evaluation of their work funded by a £30m grant from HSBC (part of HSBC’s Opportunity Partnership) to four charities working with disadvantaged people to drive employment, education and training outcomes.

The analysis, conducted by economist volunteers at Ashurst (a multinational law firm) looked at Tomorrow’s People’s three core youth programmes, Work It Out (“WIO”), In-2-Work (“I2W”) and The Works! and evaluated the impact of the HSBC funding over the 3-year period between April 2013 and April 2016. More details on these three programmes can be found below.

Using a similar methodology to the FTI study (2011) and Bank of England study (2016), which looked at Tomorrow’s People’s “WIO” programme, Ashurst volunteers found that across Tomorrow’s People’s three youth programmes, the value to the British economy over the 3-year period considered is approximately £60 million. This breaks down as £24.6 million in additional tax revenues and National Insurance Contributions; £18.4 million in benefits savings for the Exchequer, £1.6 million in reduced public health expenditure and £15.4 million in reduced police, legal and prison costs.

In terms of a cost-benefit ratio, the Ashurst study found that for each £1 invested in the three Tomorrow's People's employment programmes, the value to British society is approximately £4.20. The WIO programme delivered economic benefits of £4.18; the I2W programme delivered economic benefits of £7.04; and The Works! programme delivered economic benefits of £3.15.

In the 3-year period between April 2013 and April 2016, 2,500 socially disadvantaged young people completed one of Tomorrow’s People’s programmes. On average, 33 percent of people that completed the programmes gained paid employment on completion of the course, and a further 48 percent of participants returned to full-time education or training, improving their prospects of gaining paid employment in future.

Moreover, these estimates are to be considered conservative, as “soft outcomes” such as confidence, self-worth and commitment have not been monetised in this study. Tomorrow’s People survey results show that over 80% of respondents on the “WIO” and The Works! programmes have noticed self-improvements across these soft skill areas. A programme that improves personal and interpersonal skills is likely to improve the likelihood of employment.

We would like to thank David Wirth and Tom Punton at Ashurst for their hard work on this report.

The HSBC funding was primarily used for TP's three core youth programmes:

  • Work It Out ("WIO") – started in 2004 - is a programme for unemployed 16-24 year olds, providing them with greater confidence and motivation to improve the likelihood of getting into work or training;
  • In-2-Work ("I2W") – started in 2010 - is a project helping unemployed young people living in Lambeth, Southwark and Wandsworth to get into work or training. Developed in partnership with the Metropolitan Police Service, this scheme supports young people, many of whom are involved in gangs, to disengage from criminal activity and build positive lives through employment or training; and
  • The Works! – started in 2011 - is a ten-week programme that helps unemployed young people in isolated rural areas get into training, further education or employment in their local areas.

25th April 2017