Pay progression

Agenda for Change - Contract Refresh

The proposed agreement contains a new pay progression framework, endorsed by the NHS Staff Council. Subject to the deal being agreed, it will be effective from 1 April 2019.

The new pay progression system will ensure that all staff are helped and supported to gain the appropriate knowledge and skills they need to carry out their roles. The new system will have a simple process to strengthen appraisal systems. Employers will be better placed to identify ways to improve patient care through staff learning and development, across their workforce.

Effective use of appraisals will enable trusts to identify those staff that would benefit from further development opportunities. This will help to create a culture based upon continuous learning which in turn will help improve the patient experience.

The new pay progression system will:

  • enable staff in bands 2 to 7 to reach the top of their pay band more quickly
  • describe expected minimum periods of time before progression to the next pay-step point
  • give staff the opportunity to demonstrate they have met the required standards, putting annual appraisals and continuous professional development at the centre  of the process
  • require line managers and staff to follow the pay-step submission process in order to access the next pay-step point (refer to the detail on pay progression as set out in the Annex B of the main Framework Agreement)
  • require employers to provide information to enable the NHS Staff Council to undertake regular monitoring of pay progression and re-earnable pay as well as information pertaining to employees with protected characteristics
  • not be automatic, pay step points will be ‘closed’ within ESR (the payroll system). It is expected that staff who meet the required standards by their pay step date will progress to their next pay step point.

The key points of the required standards for pay progression are detailed below:

  • a completed individual appraisal process that is in line with the organisation’s standards
  • no live formal disciplinary action on the staff members record
  • all statutory and/or mandatory training is fully complete
  • any local standards, as agreed through partnership working have been met
  • for line managers only – all appraisals for their staff must be complete.

Further information relating to the pay progression framework can be found in the framework agreement document at Annex B.


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