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Grow the financial strength of the people you help

Our calculator helps charities give the best guidance, without needing to be experts in the benefit system

One in three households have lost income as a result of Covid-19, and nearly half of people with children have lost household income. The pandemic has impacted millions of people, including those who have no experience of the benefits system.

Many people are unaware of the full range of help and support available, or what they are potentially eligible for. As a result, people are missing out on collectively around £10 billion of unclaimed benefits each year.

Charity organisations such as local Citizens Advice are stretching their already limited resources to cope with higher demand and more complex client needs. Policy in Practice is here to help staff and volunteers quickly guide clients on the support available.

Benefit and Budgeting Calculator

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Our award-winning Benefit and Budgeting Calculator is the best tool to help you grow the financial strength of your clients.

The calculator helps you build the financial strength of your clients without needing to be a welfare expert. The tool helps you securely and confidentially assess your client’s unique situation to pinpoint benefits they may be eligible for, to give them the widest possible range of support. Using your client’s information, the tool calculates their future income to help them plan from month to month, so they can take control of their money and become financially stronger.

Whether you offer a self-serve calculator on your website or liaise directly with your client by phone and email, you can be confident that you are giving the most accurate and up-to-date guidance, as efficiently as possible.

Increased efficiency for experienced advisors

Advisors are dealing with major changes in people’s needs. Keeping up with the changes in Covid-19 regulations and benefit rules can be left to us. Our up-to-date, accurate software lets expert advisors spend more time helping people instead of making manual calculations using different systems.

Confidence for new advisors and volunteers

The intuitive built-in help features in the Benefit and Budgeting Calculator mean that even less experienced staff and volunteers can have confidence that the information they provide is accurate, without having to consult with more experienced colleagues. 

Safe cloud based storage

Multiple advisors can access the latest version of a client’s record, making the process smoother and less time-consuming for everyone. Software updates are automatic and free, so you always give accurate advice.

Free training and support

Our free onboarding programme gets you started with the calculator as quickly as possible. We hold monthly free training webinars for all clients to attend, so if new colleagues join at any time they won’t miss out. The built-in live chat gives you access to our policy experts during office hours, and via email at other times.

Standard Financial Statement and affordability

Our calculator uses the Standard Financial Statement and provides organisations and people with a digital way to complete their budget in a format recognised across a multitude of sectors.

Built-in support for difficult conversations

Our calculator has average cost of living data built-in so you can compare outgoings with a typical household in the same area. These numbers, from Office for National Statistics’ data, can make it easier to have difficult conversations about expenditure. You can objectively help clients to budget well and identify ways they may be able to reduce their outgoings.

Lesser known and under claimed supports

Our calculator covers more than Universal Credit and other well-known benefits. It also calculates eligibility for extra financial support available from local authorities, utility providers and others. This may include council tax support, food vouchers, free prescriptions and warm home discounts. You can offer your customers self-serve access to the calculator whenever they want it, via your website.

Our charity sector clients use the Benefit and Budgeting Calculator to:

  • Accurately maximise income
  • Compare different scenarios
  • Create a positive action plan
  • Explain complex changes simply
  • Identify ways to improve budgeting
  • Save, store and access cases efficiently
  • Give consistent and up-to-date guidance

Inspirational stories from clients who use
our Benefit and Budgeting Calculator

The Benefit and Budgeting Calculator makes it much quicker to do calculations and the tooltips make it easy to use, meaning we only need to train people once. The simplicity of the calculator means that clients can often self serve with little support.
Sue McCarron,Citizens Advice Wirral

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Register for an upcoming webinar

TitleDateStart TimeDurationRegister
LIFT platform refresher training Join your LIFT account managers, James Rawlins and Paul Garlick, for resfresher training on getting the most out of your LIFT platform.

In this session James and Paul will show you the main features of your LIFT platform.

In addition, they will show how, using insights from your own administrative data, you could use LIFT to decide who to distribute your Housing Support Grant.

Join this session to hear:

- How other local authorities are using LIFT to identify households to target for their Housing Support Grant
- How you can use your LIFT to identify households to target, based on your local challenges/decisions
- How you can best maximise benefit take up campaigns while distributing your Housing Support Grant

Whether you are an experienced LIFT user or you are just getting started with the platform we are very happy to answer any questions you may have.

People who should attend

- New team members who need an introduction to using LIFT on a regular basis, either new or already experienced
- Team members who already use LIFT regularly but who need a refresher on all the features and functionality
- Team leaders who are deciding how the Housing Support Grant will be spent

To help us tailor the refresher session please tell us what areas of LIFT you'd like to focus on in the registration form.
19/10/202111:00 BST1.5 hours
How Kent County and district councils collaborate with data to tackle poverty Covid has turned our world upside down. Many residents in Kent, as elsewhere, have experienced financial hardship whilst, for organisations, the pandemic has been the catalyst energising them to work differently.

In summer 2020 Kent Districts and Communities Recovery Cell set up a group to focus support to residents at risk or already experiencing financial hardship because of the pandemic. Residents unused to facing financial hardship suddenly needed help to navigate support and advice systems. The group knew that things are likely to get worse for Kent's residents before they get better as furlough ends and families who were just about managing are tipped over the edge.

In a first for local government, Kent county and district councils have boldly chosen to collaboratively share their data to get powerful cross-county insights that will drive their poverty prevention activity. The information will help them to target of a wide range of campaigns to residents such as employment support, free school meal take-up, public health interventions, housing initiatives and benefits take up.

Importantly, the project has transparency built-in so that councils can very easily benchmark with each other to identify and share best practice in a safe, collaborative way.

Join this webinar to hear:

- Kent County Council's vision for greater collaborative working with districts
- Folkestone and Hythe District Council's impact achieved so far from data-led poverty prevention campaigns
- How councils can use data to target the new Housing Support Grant most effectively

We will be joined by guest speakers, Zena Cooke, Corporate Director Finance at Kent County Council and Jane Worrell, Revenues and Benefits Senior Specialist at Folkestone and Hythe District Council.
21/10/202111:00 BST1.5 hours
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