from the General Secretary

DAVE PENMAN

19 June 2017

Philip Hammond
Chancellor of the Exchequer
1 Horse Guards Road
London SW1A 2HQ

Dear Chancellor,

CIVIL SERVICE PAY REMIT GUIDANCE

I am writing to ask you to withdraw and revise the Treasury’s pay remit guidance
for 2017-8, and to draw your attention to the largest external survey of civil
servants below the Senior Civil Service conducted recently on the issue of civil
service pay.

You will be aware from your officials that the FDA has raised significant concerns
this year over the impact of a continuation of the 1% pay cap. We believe this not
only impacts unfairly on our members but is also damaging to the efficient
operation of the civil service and its capacity to address the unprecedented
challenges of Brexit whilst providing vital public services and delivering the
Government’s challenging agenda.

I attach the headline findings of our survey that covered almost 2,000 current civil
servants across a wide range of civil service employers. In particular, I invite you
to consider the overwhelming dissatisfaction among these civil servants who are, in
the main, responsible for delivering the Government’s programme.

The survey shows that 83% are dissatisfied with the pay arrangements and less than
half would recommend the civil service to friends or relatives. We found that more
than two thirds of civil servants are aware of recruitment and retention issues in
their departments, which should be a cause for concern in itself.

Compounding the retention issue is the finding that 6 in 10 civil servants say their
morale has declined in the last year and 83% feel less optimistic about their job
than they did 12 months ago.

FDA Head Office 8 Leake Street, London SE1 7NN: 0207 401 5555 W: www.fda.org.uk E: dave@fda.org.uk
from the General Secretary
DAVE PENMAN

Moreover, there is a real risk that the continuation of the Government’s current
approach on civil service pay could seriously undermine public service
delivery. Our survey found that a third of civil servants say they would like to leave
the civil service as soon as possible. Even more concerning is the view expressed by
86% of respondents that their department is not sufficiently resourced to meet the
challenges it will face in the year ahead.

Members also highlight problems in recruiting new staff and retaining those who
are recruited. The universal reason provided is dissatisfaction with ‘pay’. This
covers the absolute level of pay and the absence of any possibility of progression
to higher pay without changing departments. Failure to recruit and the high
turnover of staff is wasteful and inefficient and, in many areas, is getting in the
way of successful delivery.

The FDA believes that a new Government has the opportunity to revisit the remit
guidance issued just ahead of the purdah period. In addition, we believe that the
delayed publication of the Senior Salaries Review Body recommendations and
Government response can be brought together with the reissuing of a revised pay
remit guidance for delegated grades. Properly funded, this could provide a viable
framework for pay reform in the civil service that is capable of addressing the very
real issues we are raising around morale, recruitment and retention.

If this opportunity is not seized, it risks undermining the successful delivery of the
Government’s agenda which is, of course, the overriding objective of the civil
service.

I would be happy to discuss this further with you if that would be of assistance. I
have also copied the Minister for the Cabinet Office into this letter.

Yours sincerely,

FDA Head Office 8 Leake Street, London SE1 7NN: 0207 401 5555 W: www.fda.org.uk E: dave@fda.org.uk