Decisions on starting salaries will be monitored as part of the College’s commitment to equality in pay and benefits. 

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This guidance is designed to help Line Managers make sound appointment decisions when hiring a new member of staff. Salaries need to be consistent and equitable across groups of staff employed in similar jobs within the department/faculty/Support Services and College.

What you should consider before agreeing on a starting salary

  • The level, breadth, depth and complexity of the individual’s knowledge, experience and understanding of different aspects of the job. This includes expert professional and theoretical knowledge and experience.
  • The current salary of the successful candidate, which should be verified via their latest payslip. When looking at their current salary consider the context e.g. salaries outside London tend to be lower, international comparisons are difficult to make and you should benchmark against the local job market for the role.
  • Be aware that men are often more confident in negotiating a higher salary than women and that the offer of a higher salary should not be given purely on the fact that it was requested.
  • The salaries of current team members who may hold the same or a similar job. Care must be taken to ensure that new starters are not placed on significantly different salaries to existing staff in a similar position to ensure the principles of equal pay are applied and maintained. The College is committed to ensuring equality of pay for all staff.
  • All new starters must be given equal treatment and considered fairly.  When deciding an individual’s salary, this must be free from bias in relation to age, ethnic origin, gender, gender reassignment, disability, religious belief, sexual orientation, marriage and civil partnership and pregnancy or bias on any other grounds.  Part-time staff, staff on family-friendly leave, and staff on fixed-term contracts should not be treated any differently from other staff.
  • In the overall reward context, salary is only one element of the wider employment package of terms and conditions. The College’s Total Remuneration Package (TRP) for staff is the overall package of pay, recognition, pensions and other benefits by which the College compensates staff for their contributions to College’s mission. Items such as leave, pension contributions should also be considered when agreeing a starting salary.
  • Where applicable, the potential for salary progression within the current incremental grading structure or pay adjustment for fixed salaries.

What starting salary should normally be offered?

  • Appointments will normally be made to the first incremental point of the relevant grade or to the start of the grade for fixed salaries. However, it is for the recruiting manager to make the decision on where to appoint on the incremental scales with consideration of the above factors. 
  • If the offer is above the bottom of the grade (outside of the contribution range) the hiring manager can agree this but must have reasonable justification to support their decision which they will need to provide to the Recruitment Hub in writing.
  • Offers in the contribution range of grades scales should only be used in exceptional circumstances and will require supporting evidence to support the request. This should be agreed with your HR Strategic Partner/The Recruitment Hub before any agreement with the candidate.  
  • Any request for a market supplement should have been explored with your HR Strategic Partner and must be supported by benchmark evidence.
  • Fixed salaries at Level 6 and Level 7 must be agreed with the Deputy Director (HR and Service Transformation) or with the Director of HR. This should be done through the Recruitment Hub. Salary decisions will be primarily commensurate with internal benchmarks with external benchmarks considered where appropriate.