A National Credit Union Foundation research grant showed that statistically significant changes to financial behaviors can be achieved through interventions as simple as a prompting emails. determine if encouraging employees to split their paycheck—i.e., send part of their earnings directly to savings—could establish positive savings behaviors.
In June 2020, the National Credit Union Foundation launched a grant project to determine if the financial well-being of credit union employees could be improved by encouraging behaviors that build short-term savings.
Three credit unions participated in the study, with researchers from Duke University’s Common Cents Lab and the University of Southern California designing the experiment and overseeing the data collection and analysis.
Each credit union saw a promising uptick in split deposits and directional data indicating action can lead to improvements in an individual’s subjective financial well-being.
This report compiles both the process, results and impact, as well as detailing some of the challenges and opportunities for improvement for any institutions looking to replicate or implement a similar initiative.