Outrage at pay increases for top university managers

November 22, 2012 8:30 AM

There is outrage at the University of Bath at the eye-watering increase in wages awarded to their vice-chancellor and other senior managers—while other university staff are expected to take real term pay cuts.

Despite complaints from the University and College Union (UCU), the university remuneration committee has ignored popular dismay and decided to boost the pay of the vice-chancellor and senior managers by 4.6%. UCU has estimated this could mean the vice-chancellor’s pay packet will go up from £284,000 by £13,120—almost the equivalent of the salary of the lowest paid university employee. In contrast, UCU members are expected to accept a 1% pay rise.

‘People who work in universities are being told to take another pay cut yet the people who run the universities have seen huge real pay increases,’ says UCU’s Bath spokesperson. ‘At the same time as students are being told to take on massive debts to pay for their degrees, university bosses are getting a pay rise. It now takes the fees of 40 undergraduates at Bath to cover the remuneration of the vice-chancellor alone.’

‘UCU wants to see much more transparency in the decision-making process for high-earners’ pay,’ argues UCU. ‘We want to know how it is decided and we want to see elected staff representation on the remuneration committee. Our union’s national policy is that the boss should be paid no more than ten times the pay of the lowest paid employee at the university. If our call continues to fall on deaf ears we will set up our own remuneration committee to sit in judgement on the bosses' performances.’

‘Remuneration packages for vice-chancellors reflect what is required,’ said a University of Bath spokesperson, ‘to recruit and retain individuals able to run complex, multi-million pound organisations operating in a highly competitive global market.’There is outrage at the University of Bath at the eye-watering increase in wages awarded to their vice-chancellor and other senior managers—while other university staff are expected to take real term pay cuts.

Despite complaints from the University and College Union (UCU), the university remuneration committee has ignored popular dismay and decided to boost the pay of the vice-chancellor and senior managers by 4.6%. UCU has estimated this could mean the vice-chancellor’s pay packet will go up from £284,000 by £13,120—almost the equivalent of the salary of the lowest paid university employee. In contrast, UCU members are expected to accept a 1% pay rise.

‘People who work in universities are being told to take another pay cut yet the people who run the universities have seen huge real pay increases,’ says UCU’s Bath spokesperson. ‘At the same time as students are being told to take on massive debts to pay for their degrees, university bosses are getting a pay rise. It now takes the fees of 40 undergraduates at Bath to cover the remuneration of the vice-chancellor alone.’

‘UCU wants to see much more transparency in the decision-making process for high-earners’ pay,’ argues UCU. ‘We want to know how it is decided and we want to see elected staff representation on the remuneration committee. Our union’s national policy is that the boss should be paid no more than ten times the pay of the lowest paid employee at the university. If our call continues to fall on deaf ears we will set up our own remuneration committee to sit in judgement on the bosses' performances.’

‘Remuneration packages for vice-chancellors reflect what is required,’ said a University of Bath spokesperson, ‘to recruit and retain individuals able to run complex, multi-million pound organisations operating in a highly competitive global market.’

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