Pay 2021-22: Final offer presented
The Universities and Colleges Employers Association (UCEA) recently met the sector unions for a final national pay negotiating meeting for pay 2021-22.
The improved final offer equates to an increase of 1.59% on the sector pay bill. The offer represents a fair and sustainable award which compares favourably with both the not-for-profit sector, where the median pay award is 1.3%, and with the current rate of inflation (CPIH 1% March 2021).
At Leeds, for colleagues employed on our University pay scales, implementation of this final offer would mean:
- Basic pay increase of 1.5% for colleagues on spine points 22 and above.
- Basic pay increases of between 1.54% and 3.6% for colleagues on spine points 21 to 3.
- At least Voluntary Living Wage for all employees. The University made an additional increase earlier this year to ensure all employees are paid at least the Voluntary Living Wage of £9.50 p/h.
See below for a full breakdown of this final offer by spine point.
Unions are taking the final offer to their respective committees and conferences over the coming weeks.
The 1.5% to 3.6% basic pay increase is just one element of our total reward and recognition package. Annual pay increases for a large proportion of our colleagues also includes service increments, promotion and other contribution-related pay increases (additional scale increments, discretionary increments and one-off payments). Based on the final offer, many colleagues will receive at least a 4.5% uplift during the coming year, when taking into account service increments, which are paid at the appropriate service date.
This pay offer relates to all colleagues employed on the University salary scales and includes all those who have spent any time on furlough in the past year. During the pandemic, we have kept the number of University employees on the Government’s furlough scheme to a minimum, and all employees have continued to receive full pay throughout.
Other topics discussed as part of pay negotiations
Other topics were discussed during the national joint negotiating process, although not all are within the remit of the pay negotiation committee and so UCEA has made some proposals and commitments as part of its final offer. Several of these topics are important parts of our own future strategic plans for our Leeds colleague community. We outline these discussion topics below and their relevance to our ongoing work at Leeds:
UCEA has proposed the establishment of a joint working group to examine career development and training opportunities in the sector and identify good practice from within and outside HE.
At Leeds, we are committed to investing in our people through professional development and learning provision. This is integral to plans for how we will deliver on our strategic ambition.
UCEA would recommend that employers adopt the Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) Stress Management Standards approach or a suitable alternative, where they are not already doing so.
At Leeds, we had already adopted the HSE’s original stress management standards into our processes and support model some time ago, and colleagues can access information, guidance and support about wellbeing on the Wellbeing, Safety and Health website. We plan to review our policy to make sure it is as up to date, supportive and effective as possible. The coronavirus pandemic has opened up the dialogue on mental health and workload in our University community and we intend to continue that discussion and focus moving forwards.
We have also committed to forming a working group, chaired by Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Nick Plant, which will collaborate primarily with University and College Union (UCU) to determine some principles of workload that can be applied across the University.
Graduate teaching assistants
UCEA is prepared to undertake joint work with sector unions to establish information on the nature of graduate teaching assistant roles and similar roles and the nature of the issues faced by employees and employers in the use of these roles.
At Leeds, we have started a review of our employment and engagement terms. The term ‘graduate teaching assistant’ mostly refers to postgraduate researchers who teach and there is a stream of work within our review that includes this group.
UCEA would agree to work with the unions to explore examples of best practice and mechanisms which could be promoted to employers to improve visibility of opportunities.
At Leeds, we have a long-established, well-adopted approach to redeployment which has seen nearly 400 people successfully achieving new roles in the past five years. Nevertheless, we are planning to review our framework to ensure it continues to fulfil our future needs.
Gender, ethnicity and disability pay gaps
UCEA has conducted surveys and published lots of data in this area and would support the creation of a new working group to examine intersectional data and potential institutional-level solutions based on best practice.
At Leeds, we remain committed to the plans we set out to reduce our gender pay gap and we continue to prioritise this long-term work. Our gender pay gap reflects the distribution of men and women through the grades and we do not have an equal pay gap, meaning there is parity of pay for men and women for comparable work.
We are keen to be able to accurately report on our ethnicity and disability pay gaps and in order to do this, our current focus is on striving for more accurate and meaningful data as this is essential to enable the analysis and reporting.
These areas are critical to the approach we are taking to implementing our new strategy, as signalled by the recent appointment of our new Deans for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
To discuss anything in this update, you can speak to your manager or contact your HR representative.
Final offer: new salary spine points
|Spine point||Current salary £||Uplift £||Uplift %||Salary from August 2021 £|
1.5% will also apply to Grade 10 spine points.