Pay the topic of the day for general staff

Posted By TEU on Jul 19, 2012 |

Tertiary Update Vol 15 No 24

For many professional, general and allied staff at universities a fair pay increase will be one of the hot topics of discussion at next week’s general staff day.

This year TEU’s annual general staff day, which includes celebratory events at all eight universities and several polytechnics, overlaps with employment negotiations for most university professional, general and allied staff.

TEU’s deputy secretary Nanette Cormack says that one of the issues general staff have faced in the lead up to employment negotiations is convincing employers that anything less than a cost-of-living increase will drive down salaries and make it harder for people to pay their household bills.

“Too often employers mistakenly argue that general staff have other opportunities to improve their pay by progressing through pay steps or grades, so they do not need a general CPI catch-up,” said Nanette Cormack.

“But, by mounting that argument, employers are mistakenly conflating two quite distinct pay principles. As a first principle, a good pay system should keep pace with the cost-of-living, but as a second principle, individuals should be rewarded within that system for their personal contributions, experience and loyalty.”

“If the whole pay scale stays still, then each year everyone gets progressively poorer.”

Nanette Cormack says it is even more important that employers include a cost-of-living increase in their employment offer if they have a pay system for general staff that is not clear or transparent, such as at Victoria University, where it is very hard for staff to know what they need to do to advance along the pay scale.

Also in Tertairy Update this week:

  1. Privatising level 1-2 students’ education an unnecessary gamble
  2. Lagging pay rates need lifting
  3. CPIT restaurant team wins teaching award
  4. Post-grad students fume over lost allowances
  5. 100 academics challenge govt education policy
  6. Another business leader for TEC board

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Scotland’s seats of learning are too important to be left in the hands of managers, writes Robin McAlpine, so let’s give academic staff and students a chance to run them – The Scotsman

Carleton University in Canada is backtracking on a private donor agreement after it was forced to release details following an access to information request. The agreement gave the donor the right to appoint three of five people on a steering committee that had the power to determine the graduate program’s budget, academic hiring, and curriculum – The Globe and Mail

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