This guidance is designed to help Line Managers make sound appointment decisions which are robust, evidence-based and fair to both the new member of staff and existing staff. The staff guidance advises both new and existing staff on the starting salary they can normally expect to be offered when taking up a new position.
Decisions on starting salaries have an impact on equal pay and will be monitored as part of the College’s commitment to equality in pay and benefits.
What should I consider prior to agreeing a starting salary?
- That salaries need to be consistent and equitable across groups of staff employed in similar jobs within the department/faculty/Support Services and College. You are required to ensure your approach to starting salaries is applied equitably
- The level, breadth, depth and complexity of the individual’s knowledge and understanding of different aspects of the job and expert professional and theoretical knowledge and experience where appropriate
- Where applicable, the potential for salary progression within the current incremental grading structure or discretionary pay adjustment for fixed salaries
- The current salary of the successful candidate, which should be verified as part of the reference request with the candidate’s current employer.
- That appointments must be made within the incremental points of the advertised grade, any deviation must be signed off by the local Senior HR Manager along with documented reasons or Director of HR and Organisational Change or by the Deputy Director of HR or Head of HR for Central senior roles outside of the salary structure
- For fixed salaries, appointments should be made in line with internal or external benchmarks.
- Be mindful of any unconscious biases you may have to ensure you make a fair decision on salary
- Be aware that men are often more confident in negotiating a higher salary than women and that the offer of a higher salary should not be given purely on the fact that it was requested
- That in the overall reward context, salary level is only one element of the wider employment package of terms and conditions so comparison of aspects such as hours, leave, pension contributions should also be taken into account
What starting salary should normally be offered?
- Appointments are normally made to the first incremental point of the relevant grade or to the start of the grade for fixed salaries, reflecting the fact that individuals may have the basic skills and competences required for the job, but it will take them time to gain the experience to perform the job at a fully competent level in line with Imperial’s requirements
- Existing staff appointed to new positions who are:
- appointed at the same grade should normally be placed on the same incremental point/ fixed salary as they are currently on. They will also retain their existing date for incremental progression
- appointed to a new position at a higher grade than their current position, will normally be placed on either the first incremental point of the new grade, or the incremental point above their existing salary. They may retain the standard incremental progression date
- on fixed salaries will either be placed at the start of the range or a salary commensurate with internal or external benchmarks.
- Appointment to fixed points should only be used in exceptional circumstances
I want to offer a salary above the starting point for the grade - what should I do?
- You must consult with your local HR team who will provide advice on the salary level that can be offered within the grade or the addition of a market supplement. Any starting salary offered above the first incremental point of the grade or start of the grade for fixed salaries must be supported by written objective justification and approved by the local Senior HR Manager or Director of HR and Organisational Change, the Deputy Director of HR or Head of HR for Central senior roles. This justification must be retained as it may be called for in defending an equal pay claim.
- It is expected that the salary will be contained within the grade of the post. If in an exceptional circumstance the starting salary you wish to offer is higher than the salary band for the grade, approval for offering this higher salary must be given by the Director of HR, Deputy Director of HR or Head of Reward, Engagement and Policy.
1 What starting salary will I be offered?
- Appointments are normally made to the first incremental point of the relevant grade or to the start of the grade for fixed salaries
- If you are an existing member of staff appointed to a new position who will be:
- appointed at the same grade, you will normally be placed on the same incremental point/ fixed salary as you are currently on. You will also retain your existing date for incremental progression
- appointed to a new position at a higher grade than your current position, you will normally be placed on either the first incremental point of the new grade, or the incremental point above your existing salary. You may retain the standard incremental progression date
- on a fixed salary, you will either be placed at the start of the range or a salary commensurate with internal or external benchmarks
- Salaries above the minimum point for the grade will not be offered as the norm and any consideration of this would need to be carried out in consultation between your new manager and the Director of HR and Organisational Change, the Deputy Director of HR or Head of HR. Agreement on a higher salary being offered would only occur following formal justification provided by your new manager and agreement of this justification by HR.