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I was hoping someone could offer me some advice.
I work for a bank and have recently been restructured into a role at a lower grade. This is my third such restructure and even before the last one, I was on quite a high salary based on the level I reached before the first one.....
Each time they can't take any salary off me and over the past 3 years I've applied for loads of roles at my original grade and a few 'lateral' moves at my previous grade.
My job is not very fulfilling and I want to keep my career going.
This latest restructure represented an opportunity to make a lateral move at the new level into a new area and I applied for a role in another division and was offered the job.
Usually with a lateral move you get a payrise but I was not expecting one given I am over the scale.
I was over the moon but when the hiring manager asked if the standard payrise was acceptable, I said I didn't think I would qualify due to where I was at and he said he hadn't checked with HR what my salary was so I told him. He said he would need to refer.
He came back to me last week and said the offer still stands but I would need to come down to the maximum of the pay range for the role which is a pay cut of over £6000. I really can't afford to do that but didn't want to just say no.
The union said that it was unfair that the company could put me into a role and in effect leave me trapped in it and I wondered if there was anyone in a similar environment that could offer some pearls of wisdom?
I've been on holiday so I will ring HR myself tomorrow and see where I stand in my current role on my salary. When the restructure was announced it was made clear our salaries were protected.
I do need a change but not at such a high cost when my mortgage etc is based on my current salary.
I am not expert / HR bod, however it seems to me that the way to advance career / get regular pay rises is to change employer. There doesn't seem to be any loyalty from employers to employees so you might as well explore alternative employers if that's possible. The longer you get stuck at a particular grade, the more hiring managers will pass you over as they see other people up and coming. Start looking for a new employer tomorrow!
Thanks for the reply DPotter,
I wish I could leave but I am so heavily tied I fear I am stuck. I'm not bothered about payrises I just don't want a pay cut...
I'm in a no win situation and I hate this lack of control so maybe I do need to at least look outside.
"When the restructure was announced it was made clear our salaries were protected."
I would expect the protection to cover you as long as you are in the job you've been restructured into/if you are forcibly moved into another job.
If you choose to apply for a different job at a lower pay grade than you are being paid at I really don't think you can expect the protection to continue and the new department to pay you £6k over the odds for the role. If they were forced to do that they'd appoint someone else.
Check the wording of the policy or letter you were given to make sure, but I'd be surprised. Otherwise you could theoretically apply for a minimum wage cleaning job and they'd be forced to pay you that salary.
Thank you flowery. I've had no letter or anything to outline what the protection entails so I thought a sideways move would be ok. If the business can put me into a role at said grade it seems very unfair I can't make a sideways move (fully appreciate if I was applying for a lower grade role) and that's where the union are also saying it is unfair. But I still have to work there so I'm kind of stuck.
The first restructure happened just before I got pregnant and the second as I went on mat leave, by the time I came back the whole department had changed and I was the proverbial new girl.
I agree with dpotter.
I'd speak to hr asap (actually make an appointment face to face) and ask them to explain exactly where you stand and discuss implications on your career progress.
No letter confirming your salary protection?! That's odd. Is there a policy on this? There may well be, as it's a bank.
Thanks flowery I've checked the policies today.
All we had was a meeting that said we would have protection and the policy confirms that my salary is protected. Other things such as holidays are only protected for the first 2 years so I will lose a couple of days for sliding down a ladder.
HR are not there to speak to us mere mortals but I did call them this am. They suggested I speak to redeployment support (which is odd as I am not at risk) but anyway I have a good contact in rs and she said categorically my salary is contractual and suggested I call the union.
They agree but it's a case of what can I do? If I call the new area out it doesn't make a good starting point so I may have to let his one go.
I told the hiring manager I just can't accept a huge reduction and he was going back to see if he could find a solution.
The union suggested my current area could agree to bridge the gap but this all has to be done through my line manager so I have asked him to do this and we will see what comes of it.
What is interesting is that the protection policy clearly states the business should seek to offer me a role at the previous level at the earliest opportunity and this hasn't happened so I will use this experience to get a firm plan of attack in place.
I think the salary protection is a red herring here.
You've applied for a different role, so you have to take the salary that goes with that role.
If I applied for a different role internally which paid less than I earn now, I'd have to accept the cut in salary.
That is an unusual way to protect a salary - usually, the salary (from the first job) would be protected for a limited time frame in the job that you are redeployed into, with a view to either moving to a job in the right grade or bringing the redeployment job up to the grade you are being paid for over the protected salary timescale.
As a PP stated, I think the fact that you have applied (rather than been redeployed) into a role is the main factor here - I'm not sure the salary protection applies, but it obviously depends on your scheme. If your pay is contractual and completely unrelated to your role that does make it difficult for you to take any role other than one that already pays that salary.
I hope you can sort something out with the new division/role, it is a tricky situation!
"she said categorically my salary is contractual"
I don't think anyone's saying any different. But that doesn't mean if you seek to vary your contract you are entitled to completely unconditional protection of your salary. It means that while you are in your current position or moved to another position by your employer, your salary remains the same. If you choose to apply for a different job which comes with a lower salary, that is entirely your decision.
I've been through this a couple of times, also in a bank environment, which sounds very similar to yours. If you receive an annual bonus which is linked to grade, check whether this is covered by your two year protection (it is in my organisation). It's another factor to consider if accepting redeployment.
Where I work, you are supposed to receive 'support' in finding an alternative role at your previous grade but in practice this is meaningless and unless you are classed as at risk of redundancy, you receive no preferential treatment when applying for new roles . I stuck it out at the lower grade until I eventually managed to get a new role at the higher grade, fortunately not long after the protection expired.
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