Policy on starting salaries for Professorial (Non-clinical) and Professional Services Grade 10 staff
Updated on 11 September 2023
Policy sets out the starting salaries for Professorial (Non-clinical) and Professional Services Grade 10 staff
As a starting point to this paper, it is useful to be reminded of the stated position in the University’s Reward Policy for Professorial and Grade 10 Staff. The following extracts from this document are relevant:
The maximum point on the nationally agreed salary scale, is the minimum salary point for Professorial and equivalently graded Professional Services staff. On the scale currently in use, at the University of Dundee, this equates to Grade 10, spinal point 50. This is therefore currently, the minimum salary any grade 10 member of staff should be on but can of course start at a higher salary than this if appropriate (see point 6 below).
As described in the University’s Reward Policy, for benchmark purposes, the University relies on the annually produced UCEA Senior Staff Remuneration Survey. This survey is generally available in March each year and refers to pay data as at 1 November of the previous year. Normally around 149 Higher Education institutions take part in the survey and consists of pay data for over 36,000 senior staff. It is therefore comprehensive in terms of coverage and is widely used as the main benchmarking source by Remuneration Committees across the sector.
In the UCEA survey, in addition to the Higher Education market pay data, a recent development to the report now includes a chapter on external comparator salaries for professional services staff in the wider economy and top charities sector from Xpert HR. This data will also now be referenced for such appointments.
First Appointment as a Professor
Most academic staff will be either promoted or recruited to a professorial appointment from a Senior Lecturer or Readership post, which on the University of Dundee pay scale is grade 9, spinal point 45-49. There are 2 contribution related points (CRPs) at the top of the grade 9 scale (at point 50 and 51) however progression to these points is not automatic and academic staff will remain on point 49 unless nominated (and successful) for a CRP award.
When considering the starting salary for an individual being promoted to professor for the first time, the following are taken into consideration:
- That the individual will normally receive a salary uplift of £5,000, (or 10%)
- The professorial salaries are considered for existing professors in the relevant School, paying particular attention to the salaries set for any other new or recent appointments that have been made
- In terms of benchmarking, the UCEA Senior Staff Remuneration Survey is used. The classification of Professor C described as: Entry-level professor. The first level of academic appointment above the national Framework Agreement, is used. The total pay for such professors is benchmarked by HESA cost centre (which is by academic discipline) and the range for such salaries is given as lower decile, lower quartile, median, mean, upper quartile and upper decile. For first appointments at professorial level, we would normally be looking to appoint between the lower decile and lower quartile of the range. Depending on performance, the use of the benchmark Professor C comparator would normally be expected to continue for around one to five years.
Any further salary increases are considered annually through the Senior Staff Salary Review Process. The UCEA Senior Staff Remuneration Survey continues to be used along with consideration of internal relativities. Under the Professorial category in the UCEA survey, in addition to Professor C, there are two further classifications:
- Professor B – Has a well-established/national professorial reputation in the field or has external presence that places them above the first level of professorial appointment. This is the range which the majority of the University’s professors are benchmarked against.
- Professor A – Major academic figurehead, internationally renowned, one of the professorial stars of the institution, likely to be very few in number.
A judgement would be made, usually by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor & Provost and the relevant Dean as to which benchmark level is appropriate, although input may also be sought from the Principal and relevant Vice-Principals. The expectation would be for progression to be made to the mean salary for the role or to the upper quartile for an outstanding performer.
External Appointment to Professor
When individuals are appointed as a professor of the University, having been through an external recruitment process, but are already a professor at their existing employer, when considering a starting salary, the following are taken into consideration:
- The salary the individual is on
- The salaries of existing professors in the relevant School
- The relevant benchmark from the UCEA Senior Staff Remuneration Survey
Initial salary offered will consider all of the above in addition to the negotiating position of the successful candidate. Naturally, it is usually the case that an individual who is already a professor is expecting to negotiate, and be offered, a higher salary when being recruited to the University.
Professional Services Grade 10 Staff
The same practice is followed for Professional Services appointments as described for Professorial appointments. The UCEA Senior Staff Remuneration Survey also has benchmark information for Professional Services positions. For Service Director posts (the leaders of each of our full directorates) the benchmark used is: 3B – Director of a major function/group of functions e.g. finance, corporate services, HR. The benchmark information is set out by Job Function (e.g. Estates, Finance, HR, Marketing, etc) and the range of salaries is given as lower decile, lower quartile, median, mean, upper quartile and upper decile. There is a further cut of the data which is also referred to which is, by Job Function and Institutional Income, with the band income over £202m being applicable to Dundee.
In a number of directorates there are grade 10 positions below full Service Director level, broadly associated with either: (a) the role of deputy to the director; (b) leadership of a significant function within the Directorate; or (c) a specialist skill set. These posts generally benchmark against Level 4B – Senior function head.
Beyond initial appointment, any further salary increases are considered annually through the Senior Staff Salary Review Process. The UCEA Senior Staff Remuneration Survey continues to be used along with consideration of internal relativities. The expectation would be for progression to be made to the mean salary for the role or to the upper quartile for an outstanding performer.
On occasion the nature of Professional Services roles is such that the precise set of responsibilities and the organisational structure in which they sit does not align exactly to benchmark roles. An element of judgment is required to determine an appropriate salary in such circumstances. On such occasions, consideration is given to the potential for seeking informal benchmarking data from other universities with similar posts or structures. Care is also required to ensure that the benchmark chosen relates properly to the descriptor associated with it and not simply role title as similar titles can mean very different things in different institutions and in different parts of the sector.
Approved by Remuneration Committee November 2020 (and updated June 2022)