NHS Fife acknowledges and agrees with the importance of regular and timely review of policy statements and aims to review policies within the timescales set out.
New policies will be subject to a review date of no more than 1 year from the date of first issue.
Reviewed policies will have a review date set that is relevant to the content (advised by the author) but will be no longer than 3 years.
If a policy is past its review date, then the content will remain extant until such time as the policy review is complete and the new version published, or there are national policy or legislative changes.
This policy provides a mechanism for the evaluation of new posts and those affected by a significant change in content.
All NHS Fife employees covered by the Agenda for Change (AfC) agreement.
Human Resources, Line Managers and staff, AfC Matchers / Evaluators and Staff Side Representatives.
- OPERATIONAL SYSTEM
4.1 This policy covers the situation where a completely new post is developed within NHS Fife which does not have an existing Agenda for Change (AfC) job description, AfC profile or AfC banding outcome. Where a generic job description has been created from various existing job descriptions already banded in line with this policy, reference should be made to the guidance on preparing generic job descriptions, attached as Appendices 1 and 2.
4.2 It also covers the situation where it can be demonstrated that a post has changed significantly over a period where an employee or manager may request a review of the current AfC banding subject to the criteria detailed below.
4.3 The procedure described within this policy is an evaluation process for posts that have changed significantly over time referred to above; it does not deal with service issues where a role and job description could progress to an alternative existing job description within a structure. This should be dealt with as a recruitment matter and not job evaluation activity.
- CREATION AND EVALUATION OF A NEW POST
5.1 In line with the Job Evaluation Scheme Handbook, Chapter 10, paragraph 10.2.8 if job descriptions are used that have not been generated from within NHS Fife, it is essential there is a robust audit trail outlining the job evaluation processes used to determine the banding of the job. NHS Fife cannot simply rely on pay bandings determined by other employers without assurance being provided.
5.2 Recognising that managers may wish to adopt a job description generated by another NHS Scotland Board that they are basing their job description on, PCS (AFC) 2023/3 has been developed, this is a sharing protocol and job description sharing request form, attached as Appendix 3.
5.3 If a manager wishes to adopt a job description from another Board, they should email Fife.JobEvaluation@nhs.scot in the first instance sharing the job description, they have from another Board, confirming which Board and it’s banding. At this time the manager must ensure that the JE10 is signed by the relevant EDG member, and that funding is in place, before submission for consideration of adoption. If it is deemed appropriate the form will be submitted by the Job Evaluation Lead and in line with this protocol a banding may be confirmed, if not appropriate paragraphs 5.4 to 5.8 will apply.
5.4 We also recognise that a line manager responsible for creating the new post in their service may do this from using a job description already created from another Service within the Board, to do this they will submit the attached form JE10 – New Post: Job Description Submission by email to Fife.JobEvaluation@nhs.scot in line with NHS Fife’s process for approval of new posts, the manager must ensure that the JE10 (Appendix 4) is signed by the relevant EDG member and that funding is in place, before submission for evaluation.
5.5 Prior to submitting a JE10, the manager must establish that there is no other suitable job description and band outcome within NHS Fife which could be used for the post either within / out with their own area, see paragraph 5.4 above. Assistance in establishing whether this is the case will be provided by a HR Officer / Adviser by submitting the request to Fife.JobEvaluation@nhs.scot . In these circumstances, a band will be confirmed in partnership.
5.6 The HR Officer / Adviser will record details of the assigned band on the JE14 (Appendix 5) form and will send a copy of the completed form to the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations, for retention with the records of evaluation outcomes and a copy being kept with the appointment documentation for the post. The Workforce Directorate will send email notification of the outcome to the line manager.
5.7 It is anticipated that with the vast number of profiles and job descriptions now available that the number of posts falling into the “new post” category will be minimal.
5.8 Arrangements will be made for job descriptions for individual new posts to be matched and consistency checked as required by appropriately trained and experienced evaluators, working in partnership, following the agreed NHS Fife job matching / evaluation process.
5.9 An assessment of any new post established within a service should be undertaken by the manager to determine whether the role as described within the job description is accurate in terms of the duties required of the postholder and demands of the role, this period is referred to as “bedding in”.
5.10 The period given to allow a new post to “bed in” for all bandings is a period of 9 months.
5.11 If there are subsequent changes to the content of a new post over time, as per paragraph 5.9, as the post holder undertakes the role, these should be considered in line with Section 6 below.
- POSTS WHERE THERE HAS BEEN A SIGNIFICANT CHANGE IN THE DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE POST
Requesting a Banding Review
6.1 If an employee holds the view that their post has changed significantly enough to warrant a review of the banding outcome, they must first discuss with their line manager and then submit their request using the attached “employee request for significant change review” form, Appendix 6. A copy of the form should be kept by the employee. The manager must then arrange to discuss the content of the relevant job description with the employee within one month of the date of the request being received.
6.2 If a line manager considers that a post has changed significantly to warrant a banding review of the current AfC banding, the line manager will notify the employee of this and arrange to discuss the content of the relevant job description with the employee. The manager’s agreement will be recorded on the request for significant change review form, for submission along with subsequent evidential paperwork and copied to the employee for their own personal records.
6.3 The line manager and the employee will discuss and agree any amendments to the job description, tracking these changes, relating to 6.1 or 6.2 above. Any discussions should include the manager making the employee aware of the fact that a banding review may result in the post remaining at the same band, increasing, or decreasing in banding. Any amendments to the job description must be able to be evidenced and they must be deemed to be significant in nature to meet the requirements for a formal review to be undertaken.
This policy will also be used in situations where there has been a significant reduction in the duties and responsibilities of any post and where there has been a review of posts within a structure. In those situations, a review will be initiated by the manager with advice from the HR Officer / Adviser.
At this point the manager and the employee will agree the date when the job changed and record this on the JE10 form.
Should there be any dispute regarding the date of change, this should be resolved in accordance with NHS Scotland Workforce Grievance Policy at https://workforce.nhs.scot/.
Where the manager does not agree with the employee that the post has significantly changed and the employee still wishes to submit a request for a Significant Change Review, they should proceed as detailed in step 6.13.
6.4 The line manager will arrange to discuss the amended content of the current job description with a HR Officer / Adviser. The HR Officer / Adviser will discuss this with a staff side colleague and provide advice on the impact of the changes to the current banding of the post, with the expectation that it will be turned around within one month of this being emailed into: Fife.JobEvaluation@nhs.scot notwithstanding the availability of job evaluators.
6.5 The amended job description with agreed changes highlighted / tracked should then be sent to the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations for consideration, together with a completed JE10 form, as detailed in paragraph 5.5 above, within 10 calendar days from the decision taken at 6.4 above.
6.6 The effective date for any increased change in band outcome will be the date the manager and postholder agreed the job had changed, as referred to above, provided the change does not relate to a change in organisational structure or an agreed, planned change of duties within NHS Fife in which case the effective date will be agreed during those discussions.
It can often be the case that changes can occur to the content of a job description over time which would not result in an impact upon the current banding.
6.7 The decision as to whether the changes to the job description are significant enough to warrant a formal review will be taken by the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations, in conjunction with a nominated Staff Side Job Evaluation representative, with the expectation that it will be turned around within one month, notwithstanding the availability of job evaluators. It is not possible to provide definitive criterion to describe the definition of significant, however, in broad terms these are likely to be:
- Requirement to obtain a specific qualification / course relevant and commensurate with the increased role and responsibilities being undertaken, e.g., qualification / training required to work as a specialist nurse.
- Significant increase in strategic responsibilities including the development of strategic plans, policies, service developments or service redesign.
- Significant increased budgetary authority and responsibility for ensuring there are no overspend issues and for taking appropriate recovery action as appropriate without reference to another line manager.
- Significant increase in staffing responsibilities incorporating the full range of management of staff issues (for example, conduct, concerns, performance management, management of attendance).
- Significant increase in autonomy with the organisation’s delegated responsibility and accountability for the decisions made and repercussions of these with less reference to another line manager than previously.
- Significant increase in the breadth and range of responsibilities within the post (for example more of the same is a volume not a grading issue).
- Significant requirement for specialised physical skills to support new roles, e.g., nurses undertaking minor surgery.
Grading assessments of any post must be based upon the post and its requirements, not on the post holder or any skills, qualifications, or experience that he or she may possess.
6.8 If a formal banding review is required this will be undertaken in partnership, in line with NHS Fife’s procedure and the Job Evaluation Handbook processes and will involve 2 management and 2 staff side representatives with the expectation that it will be turned around within two months, notwithstanding the availability of job evaluators. This review will determine if the changed job is likely to match a profile (not necessarily the one to which it may have matched before the change). If so, it will be matched following NHS Fife’s procedure. The initial Job Description will be provided to the panel, together with the revised job description, with agreed changes highlighted or tracked.
A full consistency check should be undertaken which should comprise 2 management and 2 staff side job evaluation matchers who are experienced job evaluation practitioners and trained in consistency checking. They will carry out a consistency check of the evaluation panel’s outcome considering other banding outcomes within NHS Fife, to ensure the outcome is consistent with similar roles within NHS Fife. The consistency panel will have access to all the information that was available to the evaluation panel and the evaluation panel’s work via the TURAS job evaluation system on which they will record their further work.
If the consistency panel finds that the evaluation outcome would not be consistent, they should arrange to discuss this with the original evaluation panel to reach agreement of all evaluators on the outcome.
6.9 If it is agreed that the changed job will not match any of the national profiles, or matching is unsuccessful, then it will be locally evaluated. However, it may be considered sensible to delay completion of the Job Analysis Questionnaire until such time as the changes have “bedded in” to give time for it to be established whether these changes are required to the role on a longer-term basis. The effective date of any change in band because of the banding review will be the agreed date of when the job changed as notified on the form JE10 submitted to the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations.
6.10 The effective date of the change to pay, if the banding review outcome is confirmed as a lower band will be the next available pay date following the formal confirmation of the outcome of the review. This is to allow for completion of administration of the change to banding avoiding any overpayment to the employee(s) affected.
6.11 The line manager and employee will be notified of the outcome within 10 calendar days as soon as possible after the panel has met. The manager will be responsible for any payroll notification, where the band outcome is affected.
6.12 If it is deemed that a formal review is not required, this feedback will be provided in writing to the relevant manager, with the rationale for this decision, within 10 calendar days.
Requesting a Review Without Manager Agreement
6.13 Where the line manager does not agree that there has been a significant change then this will be confirmed in writing by completion and return of the employee request review form to the employee and the form should be sent electronically to the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations via Fife.JobEvaluation@nhs.scot. If the employee wishes to pursue their request for a review, then they should write to the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations, within one month of being notified of their manager’s disagreement enclosing the details of the areas where their post has changed significantly, their revised job description with changes highlighted / tracked and a rationale for why they disagree with the decision of their manager.
6.14 The Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations, in conjunction with the nominated Staff Side Job Evaluation representative will consider all this information and determine if a banding review is appropriate.
6.15 If the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations and nominated Staff Side Job Evaluation representative agree that a banding review is appropriate, then the steps detailed in paragraphs 6.8 to 6.12 will apply.
6.16 The effective date for any change in band outcome, provided the job description can be submitted for evaluation at that point and does not require any clarification or amendment will be the date both the manager and employee signed the employee request review form.
6.17 Where clarification or amendment is required, the effective date of any change will be the date of the finalised version of the JD being received back with the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations.
6.18 If the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations and nominated Staff Side Job Evaluation representative agree with the line manager, then 6.12 above will apply.
- APPEAL MECHANISMS
7.1 Upon receipt of the written notification of the banding outcome from the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations, the employee has, if they so wish, 3 months within which to lodge a written appeal to the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations. The written appeal must detail the basis upon which the appeal is being lodged and should not contain any new information. The appeal panel would expect to see the same job description, along with points of clarity or highlight areas the post holder / manager believes have been overlooked by the original matching panel. The appeal is required to be validated by the relevant line manager, as they will be required to provide confirmation on the accuracy of the appeal submission.
7.2 When an appeal is received either from the line manager or employee, it should be considered by a panel whose membership includes appropriately trained management and trade union / professional organisation representatives with the majority of its members different from the previous panel and consistency panel (as described in the paragraph below). This appeal panel will have access to all relevant papers and may obtain any additional information it feels necessary to come to a decision, the appeal panel will also determine the relevance of the information submitted and provide a rationale if information is not considered. The review panel should normally conduct its evaluation of the post within one month of receipt of the appeal, notwithstanding the availability of job evaluators.
In line with paragraph 6.8 above, a consistency panel of four job matchers (2 management and 2 staff side representatives) will then carry out a consistency check of the evaluation panel’s outcome considering other banding outcomes within NHS Fife, to ensure the outcome is consistent with similar roles within NHS Fife.
7.3 Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations will inform the relevant manager and employee of the appeal panel’s recommendation in writing within 10 working days of the appeal hearing. This notification must include an explanation for the decision reached. The Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations will assess any potential broader implications arising from the conclusion.
8. GENERAL PRINCIPLES
8.1 Significant change and new post outcomes are recognised to contain potential implications for other employees or groups within NHS Fife, and potentially against an even wider local or national setting. Both the panel and banding review panel recommendations must be considered by the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations to ensure that such implications are recognised and acted upon.
9.1 NHS Fife will continue to use TURAS to record decisions and store job descriptions. Matched job reports will be provided in respect of formal matching and evaluation outcomes.
- RISK MANAGEMENT
10.1 The risks associated with ensuring consistency of grading issues and identification of potential equal pay issues will be managed by the Head of Workforce Resourcing and Relations.
- RELATED DOCUMENTS
11.1 Agenda for Change Job Evaluation Handbook, TURAS, Agenda for Change Matching Protocol and Consistency Checking Protocol, JE10, JE14 forms and Employee Request Form.
12.1 AfC Job Evaluation Handbook (updated 22 November 2021).
12.2 DL(2021)10 NHS Scotland Job Evaluation Policy - issued 30 June 2021
12.3 DL(2022) 03 issued 10 February 2022
12.4 NHS Scotland Job Evaluation Policy and Good Practice Guides:
12.4.1 PCS(AFC)2023-3 - Job Description Sharing Protocol (Appendix 2)
12.4.2 Job Matching: A Quick Guide (Appendix 7)
12.4.3 Local Evaluation: A Step By Step Guide (Appendix 8)
12.4.4 NHS Scotland Job Evaluation Policy: Good Practice Guide to Support Implementation. (Appendix 9)
12.4.5 NHS Scotland Agenda for Change Job Evaluation Policy: Job Evaluation and Further Resources (Appendix 10)