- Council and democracy
What is Unified Reward?
The council is implementing a new pay and grading structure, and aligning terms and conditions, for all directly employed council staff across the council and community schools.
Unified Reward will create a pay and reward system which is simpler, fairer, more flexible and rewards performance. On 31st May we achieved collective agreement on the Unified Reward proposals with the Trade Unions, Unison and GMB, following consultations with staff and union members. The changes were introduced on 1 October 2016 for corporate staff and will be effective from 1 April 2017 for school staff.
This will be the hub for all information about Unified Reward; please scroll down for further information.
Collective Agreement reached with the Trade Unions - 31 May 2016
The Council had a final meeting with the Trade Unions on 31 May to discuss the Unified Reward proposals, and we are pleased to be able to say that we have reached a collective agreement with GMB and Unison. The Council’s Unified Reward project has looked at staff pay, terms and conditions, aiming to create a more robust pay and grading system.
The trade unions – GMB and Unison – have been consulting their members during April and May on the in principle agreement that was reached following the negotiations between the Unions and the Council on Unified Pay & Reward and at a meeting on the 31st May a collective agreement was signed. This is extremely good news and signals that both parties are happy that the package is an attractive one for employees.
At Barnet, we are an organisation that recognises trade unions as having power to negotiate on behalf of all staff, regardless of Trade Union membership. Any agreements that are made between the trade unions and council in this respect are lawfully binding, and all current employment contracts state terms and conditions can be varied via a collective agreement.
As a result of collective agreement being reached, job evaluations and individual data can be shared with staff across the council and community schools soon. Managers within the council will be distributing these to staff during the week of Monday 13 June and headteachers will be asked to distribute letters to schools support staff from 1 - 6 July 2016. A full update on planned timescales will be issued shortly.
Unified Reward Changes - Overview
A number of changes have been or are being introduced by Unified Reward from 1 October 2016 (council staff) or 1 April 2017 (schools staff) including;
- A new pay and grading structure
- Performance based pay progression
- Increased annul leave
- Revised sickness triggers
For more details see the relevant document below;
If you have any questions on the changes and how they affect you please speak to your manager/headteacher or contact;
New contracts are scheduled for distribution to schools support staff from 20 February 2017. You will receive this from your headteacher as with your job evaluation letter. If you have an outstanding job evaluation appeal at this point you will receive a new contract with details as they stand currently. Following the resolution of your appeal a revised version will be sent to you where necessary.
All council staff should have received a Unified Reward contract prior to the introduction on Unified Reward in October 2016.
Job Evaluation Letters
All staff received their job evaluation letter from managers or headteachers between 13 June and 21 July 2016.
The job evaluation letter included:
- Your current and Unified Reward job title
- Your current and Unified Reward pay grade
- Your current salary and Unified Reward salary details
- Information about pay protection arrangements, where relevant
- Information about Market Factor Supplement, where relevant
Staff who disagreed with the information in their letter, or felt it was incorrect, had the right to appeal. Appeal meetings are being held throughout August and September for council staff and commencing in September for schools support staff. Please see the appeals section for further information.
If you didn't receive your letter during June and July you may be out of scope or scheduled to receive a letter at a later date, please ask your manager/headteacher about this or refer to the Troubleshooting Guide.
Job Evaluation Appeals
Every employee has been offered the right to appeal against their job evaluation and grading if they disagreed with, or believed it to be incorrect. The deadline for submission of appeals by council and schools support staff has now passed.
Appeals could be submitted if at least one of the following three criteria was met:
- Assimilation error - you believe you have been matched to the wrong job
- Substantial change in the job - you believe there has been a substantial change to the levels of accountabilities and/or responsibilities and this may require a higher level of knowledge, skills and experience since the role profile and person specification was agreed
- Incorrect evaluation - you believe that your job has not been scored correctly using the job evaluation scheme
Appeals for schools support staff and a small number of council staff are currently ongoing. If you have submitted an appeal and require an update on progress, please contact Unified Reward appeals team at email@example.com.
Please see relevant documents are still available below
- Appeals form (schools)
- Appeals form (corporate)
- Appeals policy
- Appeals guidance
- Appeals process document
The staff consultation on the Unified Reward proposals closed on 8 March 2016.
The consultation phase included 29 briefings to around 1,000 staff, from both corporate and school settings. The consultation documents and presentation slides used in sessions are still available to view below.
On 21 March 2016 the General Functions Committee approved the Unified Reward proposals. Papers for the committee.
Frequently asked questions
June 2016: Comprehensive set of FAQs relating to collective agreement decision, job evaluation letters and appeal process.
- Council here
- Schools here
16 March 2016: During the consultation period we took over 300 questions in sessions and committed to posting the answers for all staff.
8 February 2016: Comprehensive set of FAQs relating to the Unified Reward proposals, consultation process and feedback mechanism.
- Unified Reward Project
- North London Business Park (NLBP), Oakleigh Road South, London N11 1NP
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org