To the Joint Trades Unions’ Local Pay Representatives

Dear Colleagues

Without prejudice

Thank you for sharing the Joint Trade Unions’ response to the College’s pay offer dated 14 June 2021. At the local pay bargaining meeting on 18 June 2021, you requested clarity on “who is the College” and who was making the offer. Pay is reviewed annually in negotiation with yourselves and ultimately agreed upon by the College Provost’s Board. As stated in our published pay principles, the Provost’s Board considers affordability, recruitment and retention data, pay awards of higher education institutions and other sectors, and benchmark salaries when reviewing pay. As part of this consideration, the Provost and members of Provost’s Board review your pay claim, which you have presented directly to them since 2018. They then determine the level of investment in the pay award and authorise the management representatives, copied into this letter, to negotiate on their behalf.

Joint Trade Unions’ Pay Claim

To support the Joint Trade Unions’ pay claim each year we share benchmark data with you that shows that the College is ahead of all markets with which we compete for talent. Your pay claim is solely focused on inflation, whilst the parameters for determining the level of investment in the pay award as outlined in the pay principles stated above are wider. We also look at the total value of increases received by staff and have shared survivor analysis2 | Page data with you. The survivor analysis shows the percentage increase in individuals’ salaries over a 12-month period compared to what they were earning in the previous year, expressed in groups of 250 employees. It compares the total sum of salaries for each group and the average salary for the group across the two time periods. For the period April 2020 to April 2021:

  • All staff with the exception of President Board, members received a 1.6% local pay award
  • 60% of staff received an increase to graded base salaries through automatic increments – for staff within the academic and research job family this represented an average increase of 4.3% and for other job families the average increase was 2.4%
  • 1,759 employees received either a one-off payment or consolidated adjustment to their pay, on top of the pay award and for some in addition to an automatic increment, as part of the Pay Relativity process and Coronavirus one-off payments.
  • 358 grade progression movements (promotion or new job) that resulted in an increase in pay
  • Introduction of a new Teaching Practitioner Pay scale (effective 1 April 2021) which resulted in increases for the majority of staff

We do acknowledge that increments are not entirely new investment and if some members of staff at the top of the spine point have left, they are likely to have been replaced by staff on lower salaries.

College Full and Final Pay Offer 2021/2022

The Provost’s Board are extremely grateful for the level of commitment and hard work staff have shown during the Coronavirus Pandemic, as reflected in the College being the only Higher Education Institute to implement a pay award in 2020/2021.

They accept your argument that the ongoing pandemic has required staff to continue to work hard and agree that 2.1% is affordable and commits to spend in excess of this in total, but want to target at least 0.3% being available for equity and achievement related awards as part of the pay relativity process. The Provost’s Board has authorised the negotiating team to move straight to an increased full and final pay offer for 2021/22 of 1.8% across-the-board. This represents a recurring cost of £9.2m (including £2.7m externally funded costs).

Yours sincerely

Audrey Fraser on behalf of the College negotiating team

Cc: Harbhajan Brar – Director of HR, Neil Alford – Associate Provost (Academic Planning), Tony Lawrence – Director of Finance, Jon Tucker – Faculty Operating Officer, Business School, Lynne Cox – Director of Research Office, Jane Neary – Director of Campus Services, Lois Wiggins – HR Reward Manager (Note taker), Emily Michael – HR Adviser (Reward, Engagement & Policy)


CC: Staff side representatives: Tom Pike – UCU, Michael McGarvey – UCU, Amanda Sackur - UCU, Tanya Hunt – Unison, Samuel Ferman – Unison, Darren Hickey – Unison, Susan Parker – Unite, Andrew Murray - Unite