Regrading

Regrading

Regrading Procedure for Professional Services, Technical and Support Staff

The University has in place a Regrading procedure for Professional Services, Technical and Support Staff according to their level / grade. If you are interested in applying for a regrading of your post please ensure that you review the appropriate documentation and guidance before submitting your application.

FAQs - Applicants

What is the difference between Promotions and Regrading? 

The main difference is that Regrading is focused on a post, not an individual. There must be a business need for the changes to the post which must be evident in the application. Regrading does not take into account matters of individual performance or volume of work (for which recognition may be sought under different University procedures). Applications for regrading for all grades can be submitted any time of the year. Any new grades or backdated payments will apply from the 1st of the month after the application was submitted**

** In the 2020/21 regrading exercise, currently open for applications until 31 March 2021, the new grades will apply from 1st August 2021

If I am unsuccessful, can I appeal?  

Any applicant has the right of appeal against an unsuccessful regrading application on the grounds of procedural irregularity including insufficient feedback from the Regrading Panel. If the regrading and any subsequent appeal is unsuccessful, then a re-submission cannot be made until a 12-month period has elapsed from the date the original application was considered by the Regrading Panel. The appeal process is not intended to query the judgement reached on the regrading application. The appeal will be heard in line with the University Procedure for Hearing an Appeal.

Can I apply for regrading if I am externally funded/funded by a research grant?

Yes, staff within posts that are externally funded/funded by a research grant can apply for regrading.

I have been picking up extra work to cover for a higher graded colleague who has been absent long-term – can I apply for regrading? 

The regrading applies to posts where there has been a significant and permanent increase in the requirements or the level of responsibility. Temporary increase in duties can be addressed via the contribution awards and/or acting up allowance.

Can I proceed with my application without my line manager’s support?  

Yes, if the line manager does not support the application, the post holder can still proceed with submission of the application to the Regrading Panel. Although a line manager and appropriate senior managers can refuse to support the application, they are required to sign the application and provide information on why they do not approve the application. Please refer to Paragraph 4 of the Regrading procedure for more details.

Will I require a CV or references for my application? 

No, the regrading is focused on a post rather than the individual, therefore CVs and references are not required.

Does the application need to be signed by all parties if it is not supported by my line manager?

All applications, regardless if they are supported or not, must be signed by all parties - that is jobholder(s), line manager and director / head of section.

If there is another person with the same post name and parallel responsibilities to me, in the same section, can I request automatic regrading based on their grade?

No, this is not automatic; you would have to go through the regrading process and you should discuss with your line manager in the first instance. 

Will the duties undertaken as a result of the Covid pandemic be considered for regrading of post?

The regrading of post can be considered only for permanent and significant changes in the post. If the duties that were undertaken by a post holder within a post are not permanent and significant enough, this effort can be recognised through a Contributions award rather than Regrading. 

Will it always be Directors who are subject experts – particularly with regards to some roles that are very specific?

The default level of post that should act as a Subject Expert is a Director (from the same area as the applicant), however this will depend on specific circumstances within teams. If the Director is deemed not suitable to act as a Subject Expert, the Director themselves need to identify a suitable senior management representative that would act as a Subject Expert.

I do not have a current job description - the one that I have is outdated. What should I do?

If you do not have a current job description, please contact your line manager or HR to ascertain if a most up to date job description exists.

If an application is sent to HR by the line manager will the jobholder get acknowledgement that HR have received my application?

Yes. Receipt of applications will be sent to jobholders, where applicable, in addition to the person who submitted the application.

If a post is regraded and as a result a senior post is created, will relevant existing staff be regraded and assimilated to this new post or would recruitment process be followed to fill this new post?

This will depend on the business needs identified by the management at the beginning of this process. If there is a business need to assimilate all existing post holders to the higher graded post, they will all be moved to the new post after successful regrading. However, if there is no business need for all post holders to be assimilated to the higher graded post, then a selection process will apply and staff will have the opportunity to apply for the higher graded post.

Can a contribution award and regrading of post be awarded in the same year?

Contribution awards and regrading of posts are two different processes. Contribution awards are slightly different to regrading. Regrading refers to a post and post holders working at a higher grade. Contribution awards would recognise post holders working well within their current grade. 

Is consideration given to the length of time that any extra duties have been undertaken for?

The duties referred to within the application need to be undertaken on a permanent basis going forward. New posts cannot be re-evaluated within 12 months from the date of appointment of the first employee to take up the post.  If changes are made to a vacant post, the post cannot be regraded within 12 months.

What is the appeal process and where do appeals go to?

Appeals will be considered in the first instance by the Director of People. If the Director of People decides that there is a case to be heard, they will refer the appeal to an Appeal Hearing. The appeal will be heard by the individual at the next higher managerial level to the line manager who submitted the original regrading application. The individual hearing the appeal will be supported by a Role Analyst who has not previously been involved in the case. The appeal will be heard in line with the University Procedure for Hearing an Appeal.

Is there an option to submit more evidence to support in the event of appeal?

Appeals can be made on procedural grounds or insufficient feedback. There is no option to include additional information as part of an appeal.

Are the evaluation methods different to those used during promotions?

The evaluation methods used in regrading are exactly the same as in promotions. All posts grades 1-6 within Professional Services are evaluated through an objective assessment (matching) against the Role Descriptors which incorporate the 14 HERA Role Evaluation elements. All posts grades 7-9 within Professional Services are evaluated (scored) using the HERA job evaluation scheme.

Why the application forms still refer to word limits for the sections?

The word limits specified in each section are there as a guideline, however the word limit applies to the whole application (excluding the sections for business need and line manager and directors comments).

If I have been unsuccessful at Appeal, how long do I need to wait before reapplying?

12 months from the date the original application was considered by the panel.

What salary increase will I receive if successful?

If successful, you will move on to the first increment point of the new grade.

Who to contact for support with application?

If you require any support with your application, please contact your Head of School/Section, line manager, TU rep as well the HR Partner for your School/Directorate.

Where is the completed application submitted to?

Application is submitted to regradingapps@abdn.ac.uk

What is a Blind Review?

In a Blind Review the applicants do not indicate their names & protected characteristics – they should only use their surname and employee ID number within the application form. The initial stage of application assessment by the role analysts is anonymised.

The anonymity ceases once the Role Analysts have scored the application; the Regrading Panel members will see named applications. Further information can be accessed here.

Who submits the regrading application?

The line manager submits the regrading application once it has been completed and signed by all parties.

What are the application timelines?

The regrading panel will meet at an ad-hoc basis. Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their regrading application within 15 working days of the Regrading Panel meeting.

 

FAQs - Managers

Who should be nominated as the Subject Expert and what role do they have in the Regrading panel?

The Subject Expert is a senior level management representative i.e. normally the Director (from the same area as the applicant) who will attend the Regrading Panel. Subject Experts should hold sufficient knowledge about the post to be able to answer ‘on the spot’ queries that the Regrading panel may have and explain the context of the role. Subject Experts do not have any decision-making role in the Regrading panels. HR will liaise with the Directorate/School to establish the appropriate subject expert.

One of my team members will be going on maternity leave. I would like to use this as a development opportunity for team members on lower grades. As they will be covering a higher graded colleague will they be able to apply for regrading? 

The regrading applies to posts where there has been a significant and permanent increase in the requirements or the level of responsibility. Temporary increase in duties can be addressed via the contribution awards and/or acting up allowance.

 

N.B. Line managers must ensure that fair process has been applied from the outset when allocating higher graded duties to staff – this should be done through an internal process that fairly provides opportunities for all staff to apply. This is particularly important in circumstances, when the post with higher graded duties might become vacant (for example, staff resigning or not returning from maternity leave) ensuring fair development opportunities have been given to all staff.

If more than one person holds the same post, can this process be used to regrade multiple people holding the same post?  e.g. regrading 3 x Admin Assistants.

Yes, Regrading can apply to one or more than one person holding the same post. If there is one person within the post and the regrading is successful, they are automatically assimilated to the higher graded post which should receive a new job title and a new place within a team structure.

If there is more than one person within the same post, there are a few possible scenarios which are presented in the flow chart. The outcome will depend on particular circumstances within teams and the number of higher graded posts required within the structure.

Do I have to submit information on the proposed new job title, amended job description and organisational chart even though I did not support the regrading application?

Yes, all applications, regardless if they are supported or not, must have all supporting documents attached to it. Application forms will not be accepted unless they contain the mandatory information referred to in the Regrading Procedure (Paragraph 4). Incomplete applications will be returned to the line manager unprocessed.

I wish to create a new post within my team, what process will be followed?

If you wish to create a new post within your team, please submit the Regrading application to HR as per the Regrading Procedure. This will be evaluated using the HERA scoring system and passed to the Regrading Panel.   

I am planning to restructure my team. If, as a result of the restructure, there are changes to posts and duties, what process will apply?  

If, as a result of the restructure, there will be significant and permanent changes to the duties of posts, a Regrading procedure will apply (in addition to the Change Management Protocol) . Regrading will apply to new and existing posts if permanent and significant changes are made that warrant a regrading.  

 

Regrading Process and Procedure

The regrading procedure is available for review here.

A flowchart to take applicants through the regrading process is also available here.

A flow chart representing regrading of posts with single and multiple job holder is available here

A summary presentation on what regrading is and why it is being introduced is available here.

If you have any queries regarding the process or are looking to get started with an application, please get in touch with your HR Partner.

Guidance for Managers

The guidance is available for managers involved in the regrading process.  The guidance covers regrading across all grades.

Support Staff
Guidance

Applications for support staff posts seeking regrading may be submitted at any time in the year.  Please refer to the regrading procedure and additional guidance for further information.

If you are interested in applying, it may be beneficial to review the Guidance Notes for ApplicantsGuidance for Managers is also available.

Forms

If you wish to apply for a regrading, please complete the relevant application form from the list below:

Grade 3

Grade 4

Professional Services Posts Grades 5-6
Guidance

Applications for posts seeking regrading may be submitted at any time in the year.  Please refer to the regrading procedure and additional guidance for further information.

If you are interested in appying, you may find it beneficial to review the Guidance for Applicants and Role Descriptors documents.  Guidance for Managers is also available..

Forms

If you wish to apply for a promotion, please complete the relevant application form from the list below:

Grade 5

Grade 6

Professional Services Posts Grades 7-9
Guidance

Applications for posts seeking regrading may be submitted at any time in the year.  Please refer to the regrading procedure and additional guidance for further information.

If youa re interested in applying, you may find it beneficial to review the Guidance Notes for ApplicantsGuidance for Managers is also available.

Forms

If you wish to apply for a promotion, please complete the application form:

Professional Services Grades 7-9

Job Evaluation
Overview

The University of Aberdeen uses a job evaluation system (HERA) which measures the different elements of each non-clinical role within the institution. This information is used to grade roles in a fair and consistent manner.

The job evaluation process aims to:

  • Establish the relative value or size of jobs or roles
  • Produce the information required to design and maintain equitable grade and pay structures
  • Provide as objective as possible a basis for placing jobs within a grade structure
  • Enable consistent decisions to be made about grading jobs or roles
  • Ensure that the organisation meets legal and ethical equal pay for work or equal value requirements and that the legal and ethical requirements do not discriminate

Grade Structure

View the University's grade structure and salary scales.

For further information please contact your HR Partner.

Higher Education Role Analysis (HERA)

The University uses HERA as its job evaluation tool. HERA is a tool used to evaluate roles found in higher education - this process is also sometimes referred to as job analysis. Job evaluation is the process of measuring different elements of a job in order to grade it in a fair and consistent manner.

HERA involves fourteen 'elements':

  1. Communication (oral and written)
  2. Teamwork and motivation
  3. Liaison and networking
  4. Service delivery
  5. Decision making processes and outcomes
  6. Planning and organising resources
  7. Initiative and problem solving
  8. Analysis and research
  9. Sensory and physical demands
  10. Work environment
  11. Pastoral care and welfare
  12. Team development
  13. Teaching and learning support
  14. Knowledge and experience.

These elements have been designed so that roles can be analysed in such a way as to reflect the values of higher education and the aspects of those roles seen as most important.

Completion/Guidance Notes

To help you complete the application, guidance notes are available to download by clicking the link below:

What is HERA used for?

HERA is used to create a role description or profile and a total points score for a role. The profile is used to support recruitment, selection, training and career development. The total points score is then used to assign roles to grades or bands in the University salary structure.

Why do roles need to be analysed?

The National Framework Agreement (2006) required all higher education institutions to implement a new single spine and grading structure for all staff. To do this, a series of representative roles within each institution had to be identified and analysed to allow each institution to develop (in consultation with its recognised trade unions) an appropriate pay and grading structure.

HERA provides an analytical approach that reflects the values of the sector and provides transparency to the process.  Also, using an analysis tool such as HERA ensures that roles within the University are receiving equal pay for work of equal value.

Job Descriptions

The University has developed a job description template to gather accurate and up-to-date information about all non-clinical jobs in the University. Guidance on how to complete the form is available, including a number of worked examples (please see links below). If you experience any difficulties completing the template, please contact your HR Partner.

The template was developed and agreed in partnership with the local representatives of all the recognised campus trade unions as part of the Framework Agreement (2006). The template is laid out in such a way to allow Role Analysts to score each role and place this in the University's grade structure.

Completion/Guidance Notes

To help you complete the job description template, guidance notes are available to download by clicking the link below:

Worked Examples

A number of worked examples have been produced as guidance for completing job descriptions:

If you require further information or guidance regarding job descriptions, please contact your HR Partner.

FAQs

Has the Framework Agreement Affected All Staff?

The Framework Agreement included all staff with the exception of staff paid from clinical academic salary scales and a small number of staff whose terms and conditions are excluded from the JNCHES national negotiations. All new non-clinical posts under the University's terms and conditions following the Framework Agreement in 2006 have undergone a job evaluation process using HERA to grade it accordingly.

What is Job Evaluation?

Job evaluation is the process of measuring different elements of a role in order to grade it in a fair and consistent manner. HERA has been used by the University since 2006 to assist with this process.

What is HERA Used for?

HERA is used to create a role description or profile and a total points score for a role. The profile is then used to support recruitment, selection, training, performance and career development. The total points score can be used to assign roles to grades in the salary structure.

Why do Roles Need to be Analysed Using HERA?

The National Framework Agreement required all higher education institutions to implement a new single pay spine and grading structure for all staff by August 2006. To do this, a series of representative roles within each institution had to be identified and analysed before the remaining roles could be allocated into the grading structure as developed by the University (in consultation with the campus trade unions). All new non-clinical posts on the University's terms and conditions have been analysed to identify what grade this equates to. Roles are also analysed as part of the University's annual Promotions Exercise.

Blind Review

The anonymous review of applications will continue within the University's Regrading Process.  In practice, this means that the first step in the process will be a 'blind review' of applications by role analysts.

Please read the Guidance for Anonymous Applications/Blind Review.