The training and consultancy company Public Management Associates Ltd collaborated with Coventry University to develop in-house skills in health psychology and behaviour change, reducing commissioning costs and increasing profits.

Impacts

  • A new development and evaluation process for public health intervention products has been firmly embedded
  • The Monitoring for Compliance project attracted additional contracts worth around £90,000
  • Reliance on external consultants has been reduced, increasing profit margins and potentially shortening product lead times
  • Public Management Associates (PMA) has entered into new field of work through the childhood obesity project
  • The proven process has attracted follow-on contracts, boosting turnover and profits.

"The KTP has been of great benefit to our company, as it has enabled us to work collaboratively with a university and benefit from the KTP Associate's expertise in areas in which we have little experience." (Hilary Wareing, Director of PMA and Co-Director of the Tobacco Control Collaborating Centre)

About the research

Public Management Associates Ltd (PMA) is a Warwick-based research training and consultancy organisation providing behaviour change interventions, undertaking research, consultancy and training for public sector organisations to improve social inclusion, inequalities, health improvement and public sector organisational development.

Before the Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) the company had to outsource most of its product development for behaviour change interventions, but this approach was costly and was hampering business growth. The management initiated the KTP with the Applied Research Centre in Health and Lifestyle Interventions at Coventry University in order to gain in-house expertise in health psychology models and methods.

The KTP Associate, Nina Gotz, managed two company projects to test and implement the new process. The first, Monitoring for Compliance, was an initiative monitoring the impact of national smoke-free legislation on attitudes, air quality and exposure to second-hand smoke in the hospitality sector. The second project involved the development of an intervention model to prevent childhood obesity. Through this work, the company developed expertise in a new area and attracted follow-up contracts, further increasing turnover and profits.

The KTP provided PMA with a structured and documented product development process tailored to its specific needs. As a result, the company is positioned to increase its product range and - with lower consultancy costs - also increase its profit margins.