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...to feel cheated out of £1000?

(51 Posts)
TotalWhittle Fri 31-Mar-17 08:18:46

Hello all. Looking to consult some wiser heads than mine please. brew and cake for all, with thanks.

My problem is short (and probably the solution will be too: I think it's probably "tough luck")! My manager verbally promised me a pay rise from the date I took on a new role when a colleague left, saying we would sort the paperwork later and backdate my pay increase. As the months went on, whenever I asked her about it, she would tell me not to worry because whenever she got around to doing the paperwork, I'd get all the pay.

After six months, she then told me she'd spoken to HR and I'd have to apply formally for the job, which I promptly did and got it. The day I got it, she told me she wasn't going to pay me at the higher rate I'd been promised after all. It would have been about £1000 extra over the 6 months.

Here's the kicker: she did everything verbally. I haven't anything in writing as proof, only the fact that I took over a job two pay grades higher with no change in my pay for six months.

I'm stuffed, aren't I?

PurpleMinionMummy Fri 31-Mar-17 08:21:05

Verbal contracts are still legal ones.

lljkk Fri 31-Mar-17 08:22:02

Sounds like promise she couldn't keep.
File away for future reference how little you can trust her.
Would burn your bridges to pursue this hard with no proof.
Any jobs going elsewhere? smile

WelshMammy123 Fri 31-Mar-17 08:25:04

Agree that she entered in to a verbal contract with you and you accepted the role on that basis. The contract was created at that point.

Depends how you want to play it but perhaps a chat with HR in the first instance might be a good start.

ohifonlyicould853 Fri 31-Mar-17 08:33:36

What a total shame for you. I think this is related to the fact that all of us need educating on how to deal with the formalities of managing employment here.

So at the point you formally went for a higher graded post (and got it - well done, clearly a testament to your skills, experience) - I assume HR would have issued you with a new written contract? (and not again done verbally, surely not).

This is the time when you hold all the cards - ie when you receive any job offer DO NOT ACCEPT AND DO NOT RESIGN FROM CURRENT POST until you have reviewed the written contract. And if you are pressed verbally to give an answer, your response is yes you are very interested subject to receiving the written offer (contract). If the written contract is not to your liking (eg salary specifics) at this time you can negotiate. It's your window of opportunity.

However you sound very employable and maybe it's time to seek another post elsewhere? Best wishes smile

MagicMarkers Fri 31-Mar-17 08:39:00

You could try calling the ACAS Helpline. They help with employment advice. www.acas.org.uk/?articleid=3282

NewIdeasToday Fri 31-Mar-17 08:47:00

Do you work for a large company? Where I work, individual managers would not be able to make commitments like that and certainly couldn't out you in a job two grades higher without a proper application process. It sounds like your manager was a hit naive about how things work.

TotalWhittle Fri 31-Mar-17 08:47:07

Thanks for the replies so far everyone, much appreciated. This is a new situation for me and I know I've walked into it and bear part of the responsibility for letting it drag on.

As a PP said, I'm concerned about burning bridges. This manager is notoriously capricious and bears a grudge, and I don't want to give her a reason to have it in for me. This let-down is the main reason I'm looking to move on; I've already had one job offer, and I've had a couple more interviews this week. So hopefully won't be here much longer.

I guess I'm wondering whether I'm missing a trick by not asking for what I was promised, before I go. And I know at least two others have suffered major financial disruption due to similar misleading/changes of mind, so it might help them too.

PollytheDolly Fri 31-Mar-17 08:51:16

As said above, ring ACAS. They are excellent.

dowhatnow Fri 31-Mar-17 08:56:09

If you are leaving anyway it's worth trying your luck - unless it would affect your reference.

TotalWhittle Fri 31-Mar-17 08:56:43

NewIdeasToday, I guess the problem is that she hadn't arranged to replace Former Colleague (this is also a repeating problem with leavers) and it was known I would take over as I'd been working under FC and prepping to step up since FC gave notice, three months before leaving. I actually wonder if my manager deliberately did this so she wouldn't have to pay me properly for as long as possible; it took her six months to make that phone call to HR to find out that she couldn't pay me from the date I took over. But she's an experienced manager and it seems very strange that she wouldn't have known that.

fascicle Fri 31-Mar-17 09:05:27

Why did your manager say she would no longer give you a pay rise, once you had been through the process of formalising your promotion?

What does HR have to say about the lack of pay increase, now you officially have the new position? (Why would a manager/company expect anyone to accept a promotion, if it meant greater responsibility and no extra pay?)

SarahOoo Fri 31-Mar-17 09:07:12

Just on this......

Verbal contracts are still legal ones

Well not as a such....you'd still need proof this existed to help the case.

My advice is to put this in writing to your manager and see what they come back with.

BunnyChickChocolateEgg Fri 31-Mar-17 09:14:13

May be worth a try at emailing her asking about a detail of the situation rather than challenging it specifically? You need to contrive a reason for her to reply by email too, but if you can get her to do this, she may provide the written proof you need that you were offered extra pay from the start of that job? Because, if she replies answering a minor point, and doesn't say 'what? no - we never discussed anything like that!', she will have implicitly confirmed the situation.

If you can get that written discussion, you could pursue it with management above her level (probably only worth doing if you're going to leave, as you'll likely get her into trouble for making the promise!).

You need to include enough information to show there was an offer of higher pay, without stating it all in a really obvious way.

It's depend on you work patterns how you could get an email (rather than verbal) reply...something like, ask her to reply that way because you aren't around today, but will pick up answer this evening?

Sounds complicated, but I've successfully used this approach to subtley get proof that people have had information several times.

TotalWhittle Fri 31-Mar-17 09:14:17

Fascicle, sorry, I've expressed myself badly there. I did get a pay rise once I was formally given the job, but I did the job for 6 months before that on my old junior salary, on the promise that I would be given equivalent back pay "once [my manager] had sorted the paperwork".

BunnyChickChocolateEgg Fri 31-Mar-17 09:16:44

Why would a manager/company expect anyone to accept a promotion, if it meant greater responsibility and no extra pay?

This happens a lot, because they can! Mostly people don't leave, so on balance, its worth it (if you ignore the loss of goodwill and morale in your staff....).

TotalWhittle Fri 31-Mar-17 09:16:53

Clearly what my manager should have done is arrange the interview for Former Colleague's replacement before FC actually left, instead of 6 months later. I don't know why she would have done it this way, except that it saved her a grand which is pretty small potatoes for us (but not to me). sad

I'll try to think of it as they've gained a grand but lost a damn good employee. wink

shovetheholly Fri 31-Mar-17 09:17:25

This happened to me - I worked an extra day for an entire year (from 2 days to 3), and was owed quite a lot of money. At the time, my relationship was breaking up and I really needed the cash. There was nothing I could do about it - I had trusted the person and they screwed me.

People who do this are bastards.

The person who did it to me actually arranged for the extra money (it came from an external funder) but appropriated it herself, in a personal 'slush fund'. Even though she broke every accounting rule in the book, and it eventually all came out, she is still in post. sad

TotalWhittle Fri 31-Mar-17 09:18:08

BunnyChick - sneaky, I like it!

TotalWhittle Fri 31-Mar-17 09:19:38

Ugh, shovetheholly, that's vile behaviour. I hope you're in a better place now (in terms of both work and relationships) flowers

shovetheholly Fri 31-Mar-17 09:24:56

Total - I'm in a much better place, to the point that I can turn around and laugh about it now. But at the time I was absolutely seething - so just wanted to say I know exactly how you feel and it's not pleasant. People will tell you that it's your own fault for not getting anything in writing etc. etc. etc. but the fact is that this is STILL lying and cheating behaviour - it's really taking the piss.

Nettletheelf Fri 31-Mar-17 09:29:34

Hi OP, I've seen this happen many times (I'm one of the people who ends up sorting out situations like this).

My recommendation is that you raise a grievance, or threaten to. Tell your current manager out of courtesy but tell HR first.

Do it before you hand your notice in. Your employee won't want the hassle of investigating a grievance so you'll get your money.

TotalWhittle Fri 31-Mar-17 09:32:45

shovetheholly I totally get you. It's not even about the money (though my mortgage would happily swallow it), it's the principle of someone manipulating me into doing the job with lies and trickery. I mean, if she'd said "we need you to cover this, but I can't afford to increase your pay for 6 months even though you're now doing two people's jobs for your original low salary but will you do it anyway?" then I'd have happily done it. I like being busy and taking on new things. I just don't like being walked over. I'm really annoyed!

KC225 Fri 31-Mar-17 09:32:47

Is there a way it can be made as a 'honorarium' a one of payment in recognition of something. So you won't officially be 'paid' but it acknowledges that you did the extra work. It still means broaching the manager though but it could give her a way of organising it with HR/accounts.

Good luck OP

TotalWhittle Fri 31-Mar-17 09:36:01

Nettle, thank you. That sounds like good advice. And I may give ACAS a call too, as I saw it recommended upthread.

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