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Colleague started 5 weeks after me, teaching on same course, being paid more than me

(11 Posts)
wonderstuff99 Sun 23-Nov-14 20:24:43

Hi all,

Really could do with some advice here. I started a teaching job in September on a ten week contract (new company so everyone is on the same contract). Originally I was teaching with a guy who quit in week 5 so they hired someone else to replace him. She teaches the same class as me and does not do anything extra.

As she is new, she asked me to check her claim form for pay and whilst glancing at it I noticed she was being paid £4 more an hour than me. I was a bit peeved but then thought I could just renegotiate my hourly rate for my next contract. Now however, I will not be staying with them after this contract runs out (my choice) and I am wondering if I could pursue the avenue that they should have been paying me the same as her.

I have taught this type of course for 4 years and have been an English teacher for 7. It could be that she has more experience than me and it could also be that she has the qualification that is higher than mine. If this is the case, I presume I do not have a leg to stand on, but what if she has less/the same experience and level of qualifications as me?

I also discreetly mentioned it to 2 other members of staff (that I could trust) and they were shocked at what I was getting paid and that I should be getting paid at least £4 more an hour and that I should pursue it. One of the staff members has said she is happy to put her name to a letter stating we both thought we would all be on the same level of pay.

When I interviewed for this post, I had just left a horrific job and jumped at this offer so I do take some responsibility for not negotiating my pay. However, I also feel I have been taken advantage of as the other 2 staff members I spoke with about this said they were offered their rate of pay and didn't have to negotiate - 1 is getting paid £6.50 more an hour.

If anyone could tell me where I stand legally on this, I would really appreciate it. Thank you!

Hassled Sun 23-Nov-14 20:26:48

I think you'd do better reposting this in Legal. I have no legal expertise, but presumably you signed a contract which stated the hourly rate? It does seem very unfair but I don't know what recourse you have.

AnyFucker Sun 23-Nov-14 20:26:57

You might want to ask HQ to repost this in an area that is more appropriate ?

Good luck thanks

EdithWeston Sun 23-Nov-14 20:29:47

(You might like to ask this to be moved to 'Employment Issues')

Had the other person been recruited attention he same time, you would have a very strong case.

But I don't think you are comparing like with like because this person was brought in on sod all notice mid-way through a course, when the company might be desperate not to lose clents by course folding, then there will indeed be a pay premium.

Redtartanshoes Sun 23-Nov-14 20:30:15

You accepted the job knowing the rate of pay. Either they offered more because they could find anyone to work at original rate, or your colleague negotiated her rate. Either way you were happy with the rate they offered you. You wouldn't be handing the money back if they were paying less. So it's kinda tough luck. Sorry.

This is why I never tell anyone how much I get paid. Ever

DuchessDisaster Sun 23-Nov-14 20:43:47

One thing, you mentioned that you were all on 10 week contracts and that one colleague left after 5 weeks, so his replacement is the person being paid more than you, but presumably only for 5 weeks rather that the full 10?
It is quite usual, in the IT contracting world, to obtain a higher rate for shorter contracts. If I have a contract that is only going to be 12 weeks/3 months, the rates are often considerably higher than contracts that are 6 months plus possible extensions.
Have you considered this?

mariposaazul Sun 23-Nov-14 21:47:02

I think it is to do with either different qualifications & experience or negotiation on rates at the start. NB the literature suggests that women often miss out as they are not good at negotiating/asking for more which men often do as a matter of course. You should certainly try that next time.

My understanding is that private sector organisations are more able to do this than pubic sector. It is usually a problem to know where one stands because no one knows what anyone else earns!

sonjadog Sun 23-Nov-14 22:22:33

I would have thought she is most likely more qualified than you.

magoria Sun 23-Nov-14 22:31:26

I agree with Duchess I would have thought they paid more to get someone in fast for a short term contract.

I would also be very careful as some places are very strict about discussing pay.

FunkyBoldRibena Sun 23-Nov-14 23:26:39

More quals, shorter notice, possibly more experience etc etc.

Use this as a learning curve and ask what you are happy being paid.

JulyKit Sun 23-Nov-14 23:35:06

As other have said, you should get this moved to 'Legal' or 'Employment Issues', where you've a better chance of getting posts from poster who know what they're talking about.
It may not simply be a situation of 'tough luck, you were happy at the time', but you need to know more about the types of contract, your colleague's actual duties, possibly her qualifications, etc.
Have you contacted a line manager or HR to ask them about these things? I know it's awkward, but you've a right to do so. You also have a right to ask them to demonstrate that you're not on less favourable terms than a permanent employee. I believe they have a duty to answer your question, and if you are being employed on less favourable terms, to provide a justification for why this is.

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