The main problem with the bank’s new approach to pay and performance is its fundamental lack of transparency.

According to the bank’s own research, 31% of staff don’t trust their line manager to make fair decisions about their reward. That’s a startling statistic. And the new system is going to make that much worse because going forward staff won’t know how their pay increases or bonuses have been decided. In a previous Newsletter we talked about how favouritism can undermine any new pay and performance system and that’s a real worry for many staff. It will be less about performance and competence and more about how well, or not, you get on with your line manager. We are also concerned that a pay system that’s based purely on subjective judgements about the relative worth of individuals could make the gender pay gap, for example, worse rather than better. In a system lacking transparency biases, unconscious or otherwise, will run rampant.

The results of the union’s latest survey confirmed some of the findings from a similar survey carried out by the bank. The key results from our survey were as follows:

59% of staff said that with the removal of ratings being best friends with the manager will decide pay in the future.

21% of staff said that the removal of ratings was a bad idea but only 9% said that they were confident that the new performance management system would be managed fairly.

Only 18% of staff said that they were happy with the new performance management system.

Whilst 51% of staff said that their line manager had regularly discussed performance, only 16% said that ‘check ins’ would work in their areas of the business.

In the next Newsletter we will discuss the bank’s approach to pay. We will also discuss the bank’s plans, to be announced later this year, to reduce the number of grades and create a much flatter structure.

Members with any questions on this Newsletter can contact the Union’s Advice Team on 01234 262868.

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