Negotiating your pay - the CSP’s new support for members working outside of the NHS

It’s not all about NHS pay right now. CSP senior negotiating officer Ian Taylor previews new pay guidance for our members working outside the NHS 


Not all of you work in the NHS. We get that. 

The CSP is currently campaigning to achieve an acceptable pay settlement for our NHS members across the UK.

Any improvements we achieve there will impact on everyone, since non-NHS employers must keep track with NHS pay, terms and conditions if they are to remain competitive in the staff recruitment market. 

But if you work outside of the NHS, chances are that the CSP does not have the direct right to negotiate your pay. It may therefore be down to you as an individual – perhaps along with your colleagues – to negotiate your own pay increases. 

The CSP has produced new guidance for those of you in that position. Don’t worry, the process is much less daunting than you think. Gone are the days of meekly approaching your employer, cap in hand, and asking for a raise. 

The CSP has worked closely with the independent trade union research organisation Labour Research Department to produce a 10-step guide to negotiating your pay if you work outside the NHS.

The guide includes a whole host of tips, ideas and pointers to help you gather the evidence you need to make your case, prepare it and present it. 

While CSP officers are on hand – via our enquiries team – to assist with some of this work, the onus is on you – the people who know the environment you work in inside out – to do the research which prepares the ground for a successful pay negotiation. You may wish to consider getting together with other physio staff in your organisation, or even a broader staff group, to share the burden of the research and preparation, and to add weight to your case with the numbers of staff involved. 

If colleagues are not trade union members, why not try and recruit them and give yourselves even more negotiating strength and support?

However you approach the task, if you follow the advice in our new guide, you will be gaining valuable new research and negotiating skills, and a broader knowledge of your employer’s activities.

Not only that, but in the future you and your colleagues will also see the fruits of your efforts each month in your bank balances. 

In these times of soaring inflation and increasing economic uncertainty, what have you got to lose? 

The guidance will help you:  

  1. Check if there is already a process or forum in place where your pay is determined
    This may be set out in your contract, or in a company policy, for example.
  2. Consider what other terms and conditions besides pay, need to be taken into account in the negotiating process
    Could you seek improvements in leave, travel allowances or other benefits, for example?
  3. Assess your individual and collective value to your organisation in the context of the current recruitment climate
    How easy would it be for you to be replaced if you left?
  4. Find out the market rate for your role and how to compare your own package with that
    The guidance shows you how to use a range of sources to research this information.
  5. Research and collate the facts and figures that will help bolster or illustrate your case
    The guidance contains links to databases and websites to help you find this out.
  6. Think about whether there are any equal pay aspects to your situation
    We show you how to assess this.
  7. Check out your employer’s financial position and demonstrate their ability to afford an increase
    We show you how to use company accounts and other freely available information to assess your employer’s finances.
  8. Prepare for a meeting with your employer to discuss your case
    Bringing all the above information together in a coherent case.
  9. Conduct yourself in the meeting and how to respond to your employer’s likely arguments
    Keep it professional, be prepared, and have a contingency position ready.
  10. Consider what to do after the meeting in the light of the employer’s response
    What next? Is the employer’s response acceptable or do you need to consider a formal response?

Find out more

The guide titled 'Negotiating pay in the private sector

Do you have concerns about your employment contract, disciplinaries, grievances and capability matters, injury or ill health? If you do not have a CSP workplace representative and need trade union support on an employment matter, you can contact our union officers through our enquiries team.

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