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Bands 1-4: Use Your Voice Before it's Too Late!

21 May 2013

This update is a huge "thank you" to over eight hundred of you who've already put your name to our petition demanding a fair pay increase for Bands 1-4. Whether you've signed online or on paper with one of your reps, you're helping your colleagues to make a genuine difference.

In just one week, almost three hundred have left comments on our online petition. Your comments give a voice to this anger, showing the company what a derisory pay increase really means for you. Adding your comments makes our voice louder voice until the company can no longer ignore you. At this Thursday’s pay talks, the company will be forced to face up to the consequences of their policy of continually eroding management pay.

Your reps set an ambitious target of one thousand names of staff who are willing to demonstrate how angry they feel at yet another reduction in pay against the cost of living. We’re over eighty per cent of the way there; we need your help to get the next twenty.

If you haven’t already, please take a few seconds to add your name and your views here.

For more information, see

Your comments:

We have hundreds of personalised messages for the company that range from brief demands, like Fair pay for all, illustrations of how divisive pay offers fail to incentivise performance:

I am very disappointed that an Outstanding B1-4 Leader/Manager is likely to get less of a pay rise than a Good or Developing in Role B5-8

While the above comment outlines the insanity of the general principle, the poster below paints a stark picture of what this means for the individual:

Last 5 performance reviews have recorded 2 "exceeded" and 3 "good" for a pittance reward. Now totally disheartened at yet another apparent "con trick" by NR. Differentials in awards made to 1-4's and 5-8's are simply NOT FAIR. Morale has further declined amongst Bands 1-4 and this is likely to have serious long-term consequences for the company. It demonstrates a lack of vision and fails to reward staff for many hours of hard graft.

The conclusion that’s clear to everyone (except perhaps the company) is inevitable:

I now wish I had never bothered with promotion - I'd be far better off as a Band 5!

Clearly, Band 5 can’t be oblivious to this sentiment:

It sends out a terrible message to any younger budding Engineers or Managers that you will be valued MORE as a Band 5 than you will as a Band 4 and has the potential to bring Graduate Succession planning to a grinding halt.

The skilled staff who have been promoted above Band 5 are rewarded elsewhere in the industry (a real market, rather than NR’s “market” of Walt Disney and Poundland), receiving crumbs compared to the feast offered to executives who determine pay policy:

“… constant sub RPI increases are resulting in the continuous loss of experienced technical staff. Every year more and more of my colleagues are being tempted to leave and work for contractors offering them improved salaries alongside more favourable incentive packages. The company continues to defend its executive level bonus scheme by stating it is necessary in order to keep and attract the best staff. Why is this value not extended to lower level management staff who are equally as important to the safe and efficient running of the railway?”

Planning for tomorrow's railway should include NR's HR policy as well as infrastructure.

Thanks again to those of you who’ve already signed up and shared your story. If you haven’t, make sure you add yours today. Thanks too to your reps who’ve been working tirelessly to sign colleagues up. One representative has gathered almost ninety signatures already. Please help them by adding your name or even downloading a petition sheet for colleagues to complete and return here:   TSSA Bands 1-4 Pay Petition 2013

Finally, don’t forget that although all staff can sign our petition and leave their comments, you need to be a member to have a say if it comes to a vote to accept or reject any final offer on the table. Please remind colleagues to join TSSA at

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