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Human Resources

Market supplements

Queen Mary is committed to the principles of equal pay for work of equal value and has a job evaluation scheme to measure the relative value of all jobs. The grading, and therefore the salary range, of all roles is determined by the outcome of job evaluation.

Queen Mary’s pay bands are designed to offer competitive salaries for all roles alongside a range of benefits that make the university an attractive place to work.

There are occasions, however, when the grading determined for a role results in an inability to successfully recruit to or retain staff in particular professional or academic positions. In such cases it may be appropriate to pay a market or retention supplement in addition to the basic salary, to ensure that such a position is filled. 

Pay, however, is not the sole, or main, method of attracting and retaining staff. Other aspects of the overall employment package should be promoted to colleagues and prospective employees, such as the strength of the benefits package (particularly where staff are joining us from outside the Higher Education sector or from overseas), the vision, mission and values of Queen Mary as an employer, and the development and career opportunities available to colleagues.

It is also important to explore a range of methods and sources of recruitment before determining whether a market supplement is needed and appropriate. This may include ensuring that the most appropriate recruitment sources/media are used and considering whether the role needs to be carried out in-house and/or on-site.

If there is evidence that a post cannot or will not be filled at the salary level determined by job evaluation, or that there is a material risk of a position becoming vacant due to a ‘below market’ rate of pay, the Head of School/Department or Institute/PS Director should contact their HR Partner or Faculty Strategic HR Partner in order to discuss whether a market supplement may be appropriate and, if so, the process to follow in order to produce and obtain approval for a business case for a market supplement.

Evidence that a market supplement may be appropriate includes the following:

  • Evidence of two unsuccessful recruitment attempts in the preceding six months.
  • Evidence of the candidate’s current overall pay and benefits package and that there were no other suitable candidates who would not require a market supplement.
  • Evidence of skilled staff leaving Queen Mary, or being approached, for similar jobs with a higher level of pay elsewhere. Such cases must be underpinned by exit interview details or other evidence such as an offer in writing from another employer.
  • Tangible market information on the salary being paid for similar posts in other organisations. This is likely to include salary data from external salary surveys and/or advertisements and job descriptions from at least two similar positions in comparable organisations at the same seniority/level/accountability.

Any decision to ultimately pay a supplement is therefore based on careful analysis of the relevant market data and is aligned to clear principles on market pay.  Where a recommendation is made to pay a supplement, this is signed off and overseen by a relevant university Senior Executive Team (SET) member, and subject to Equality Impact Assessment (EIA).  Supplements will be subject to regular review (e.g annually) to ensure they remain appropriate and will not be a permanent addition to contractual pay.

For further information, please contact your HR Partner or Faculty Strategic HR Partner.

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