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Bonus Payments

Volume 453: debated on Monday 27 November 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what criteria a civil servant in his Department must fulfil (a) to be considered for a bonus on top of their regular salary and (b) to be awarded a bonus. (101029)

Separate performance bonus arrangements operate for staff in the senior civil service (SCS) and those at Grade 6 and below.

For the SCS

The performance management, pay and reward arrangements for the SCS are centrally determined.

Non-consolidated cash payments, otherwise known as bonuses, reward in-year performances in relation to agreed objectives, or short term personal contribution to wider organisational objectives. Bonuses are paid in addition to base pay increases and do not count towards pension.

Bonuses are allocated by Departments from a ‘pot’ expressed as a percentage of the SCS salary bill, which is agreed centrally each year following the senior salaries review board recommendations. The intention is that bonuses are awarded to people who have delivered priority business objectives.

For Staff at Grade 6 and below

The high performance bonus awards scheme introduced in April 2005, provide DEFRA staff with recognition and reward for delivery of an outstanding outcome or performance that significantly exceeds normal expectations. The process should provide staff at all grades with an opportunity to earn a bonus, and ensure that achievements in operational, policy and corporate services areas are recognised as being of equal esteem.

There are two types of award:

In-year high performance bonuses paid to individuals or teams in recognition of “one-off” achievements during the year; and

Annual high performance bonuses which are paid to the top 10 per cent. of performers in each Directorate General for delivery of an outstanding outcome or performance “sustained throughout the whole year”.

These arrangements apply to staff covered by core-DEFRA pay arrangements (core-DEFRA, State Veterinary Service, Pesticides Safety Directorate, Veterinary Medicines Directorate, Marine Fisheries Agency and Government Decontamination Service). DEFRA’s other agencies and non-departmental public bodies operate separate pay and bonus arrangements.