HR Policy
To Be Categorised
CoSO 14
01 March 2014
01 January 0001
01 January 0001

General Note

NHS Fife acknowledges and agrees with the importance of regular and timely review of policy/procedure statements and aims to review policies within the timescales set out.

New policies/procedures will be subject to a review date of no more than 1 year from the date of first issue.

Reviewed policies/procedures 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/procedure is past its review date then the content will remain extant until such time as the policy/procedure review is complete and the new version published, or there are national policy or legislative changes.


Doc Title

Starting Salaries for Staff new to the NHS or Staff Changing Job Families within the Same Band


For all Managers

HR and Payroll Departments

Document Reference Number

CoS014 (Updated March 2014)

Content Based on Decision made by

Scottish Pay Review and Implementation Group (SPRIG) letter dated 9/11/2005 ref no SGL/2005/012


This briefing contains the guidance provided within the SPRIG letter and provides the criteria for assessing the starting salaries for staff new to the NHS or those changing job families within the same band.

Starting Salaries for Staff New to the NHS or Job Families within the Same Band

  1. Giving incremental credit without good reason is contrary to the principle of fair pay within Agenda for Change. In general, new starters to the NHS should start on the minimum of the scale and work their way up. Staff changing job families within the same band may not retain their existing salary placing.
  2. There are strict rules within the Terms and Conditions Handbook regarding the incremental point to which an employee is appointed on promotion and on temporary upgrading. This guidance therefore applies only to people joining or rejoining the NHS or those changing job families within the same band.
  3. To ensure consistency, before an offer or commitment of any kind is made to a candidate / employee, this must be approved by the relevant HR Officer / Manager who will keep records for employee monitoring purposes.
  4. Managers may offer new entrants or those changing job families within the same band a salary above the minimum of the scale to recognise relevant experience. The reasons and supporting evidence should be fully documented. Evidence may, for instance, be taken from the application form, references and job descriptions and staff transfer certificates. Verbal evidence provided at interview must be documented.
  5. A manager must be able to justify his/her decision, including the impact on:
    • Others already in post (bearing in mind equality issues).
    • Others outside the immediate department.
    • Consistency locally.
  6. Any decision likely to have an impact across a profession may only be taken by the professional head.
  7. In fairness to existing staff or staff who may be internally promoted, care must be taken that incremental points in recognition of experience only recognise completed years of experience at the level of the pay band in question, and not below it. If necessary, advice should be sought from the relevant HR Officer / Manager.
  8. In the interests of equity, incremental credit will not be given for reasons other than complete years of experience. For instance, it will not be given due to market forces, or to compensate for travel costs involved in the new post.
  9. It has been nationally agreed that when deciding on the starting salary for someone returning to the NHS, breaks in service may happen and when deciding the incremental point a person could be on, ie the employee need not start again at the minimum of the scale if there has been a break. In deciding whether to give increments for all previous completed years of aggregated service, consideration should be given to whether the person has kept their continuous personal development up to date, if relevant. Relevant experience outside the NHS may also be taken into account.
  10. This guidance will be reviewed one year after date of publication.