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Measuring Client Outcomes: research from our pilot project

Since 2017, we've been piloting a project which regularly measures the outcomes of our clients in problem debt.

We define a ‘client outcome’ as the changes, or lack of changes, in a client’s situation after receiving debt advice. This includes their financial situation as well as other aspects of their life such as overall wellbeing.

The report looks at the process of conducting this research and our initial findings, as well as thoughts and reflections about what the results may mean for the charity, the wider debt advice sector, creditors and legislators. For our full findings, download the report.

Getting debt advice helps people's financial situations

The evidence from this pilot suggests that debt advice is working particularly effectively for certain groups of people in problem debt. Three months after advice, 60% of clients said their overall financial situation was better than before seeking advice. Even better, 12% said their debt problem was now completely sorted.

getting debt advice helps people’s financial situations

But many clients are still living on a knife edge

For most clients, including those with positive budgets, debt problems can’t be solved after just three months, and the severe impact of problem debt is still being felt at 15 months after advice. At three months, 14% of clients were still using credit, with 4% using it for housing costs and essential bills.

Recovery from debt is often a marathon, not a sprint

For many clients with additional vulnerabilities, particularly those who also have negative budgets, making ends meet each month can be difficult. More than a third (36%) of clients with a negative budget and additional vulnerability say they don't think they’ll be able to make ends meet.

recovery from debt is a marathon, not a sprint

Download the report now to see the full findings and reflections on our Measuring Client Outcomes pilot project.

Download now

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Helping you become debt free...

“I wish to thank your staff for all the great help they gave me when I was in so much debt.
They were a pillar of support to me.” (Leslie, Essex)

Foundation for Credit Counselling Wade House, Merrion Centre, Leeds, LS2 8NG trading as StepChange Debt Charity and StepChange Debt Charity Scotland. A registered charity no.1016630 and SC046263. It is a limited company registered in England and Wales (company no:2757055). Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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© StepChange Debt Charity 2019