Sep 8, 2017 | by Centre

Call for Evidence: in-work progression and wellbeing

How does work progression affect wellbeing? Do you have evidence from your workplace or organisation?

The What Works Centre for Wellbeing is conducting a review of how progression at work affects wellbeing. Progression includes both monetary gains (for example, increased earnings as a result of an hourly pay rise, increased hours of work, or promotion) and non-monetary gains (for example, progression into a more stable and secure job) which may or may not result in monetary gains over the longer term.

Why do we need your evidence?

While we expect that in-work progression should improve wellbeing overall, the effect will likely vary across different types of progression. Progression could also produce adverse effects, through higher levels of stress due to greater responsibility or difficulties in achieving work-life balance. Our key research questions are:

  1. Does in-work progression lead to changes in wellbeing?
  2. Do different sources of in-work progression (promotion, increases in pay or longer hours) lead to different changes in wellbeing?
  3.  Does the impact of in-work progression on wellbeing vary across sub-groups of the population or by type of job or employer?
  4. Do the wellbeing effects of in-work progression within the current organization differ from progression through moving to an alternative employer?
  5. Does in-work progression within the main job have the same impact upon wellbeing as in-work progression via additional jobs?

How can you get involved?

We want to make sure we include the best available evidence. Do you have an evaluation report, paper or research which could help us answer these review questions?

Although life satisfaction is our preferred measure for wellbeing, evidence of effects of wellbeing that may include stress, mental health, anxiety, and depression will also be considered.

We welcome evidence of a qualitative or quantitative nature. Studies that use longitudinal methods are preferred, since they offer more reliable evidence of causality. However, we also seek evidence from high quality cross-sectional studies.

What is the criteria?

All examples must be written in English or have an English translation and include an author and date. We can only accept evidence which can be made publicly available.

Please send your submissions electronically to the What Works Centre for Wellbeing ( with the subject line ‘Evidence: Wellbeing and Work Transitions’.

All submissions should be received by 15 October 2017

For a link to the Protocol on PROSPERO:


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