New proposals on performance pay for state employees


New proposals on performance pay for state employees

Performance-related pay evokes strong emotions, nowhere more so than in the public sector. Industrial Relations Services, the London-based pay researchers, has just published a state-of-play analysis reviewing merit pay practice in 35 public sector organisations in the UK, alongside details of new policy proposals for teachers, civil servants and health service workers.

Despite misgivings over the efficacy of performance pay in the public sector, the Labour government, like its Conservative predecessor, has whole-heartedly embraced this concept for state workers.

Controversial new initiatives have been unveiled over recent months that extend individual performance pay to teachers, while systems based largely on team bonuses are now firmly on the agenda for parts of the health service and central government.

The six-page report by IRS examines the (troubled) experience to date of performance pay for public sector workers.

Want to know more?

Title: "Merit malaise: performance pay in the public sector", Pay and Benefits Bulletin 493, April 2000.

Availability: contact Industrial Relations Services, tel: 020 7354 5858.

Further information: email the editor of Pay and Benefits Bulletin or jump to the IRS web site . . .

Web links

Civil servants

  • HM Treasury: proposals for the introduction of team-based bonuses for front-line staff in government offices were announced in January 2000. Published by the Public Services Productivity Panel, the 47-page report — Incentives for change — can be downloaded in pdf format by clicking . . .

Health service

  • NHS Executive: the government's Agenda for change document, published in February 1999, sets out proposals for sweeping changes to health workers' pay. Up for discussion are team bonuses and "career progression based on responsibility, competence and satisfactory performance" . . .

School teachers

  • Department for Education and Employment: the DfEE has launched a web site to give you access to the latest information on its plans to introduce performance-related pay for teachers in England and Wales. To browse the full text of this year's school teachers' review body report jump to . . .

  • National Union of Teachers: this excellent web site from the UK's biggest teachers' union contains extensive background material and research on the government proposals to introduce performance-related pay, together with numerous links . . .