PCS R&C Benton Park View Branch

For members of the PCS Union at Benton Park View


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Digital Footprint

A guide to digital footprint awareness and management

[Posted 17/10/2017]

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0.

Source: HMRC https://www.cpni.gov.uk/my-digital-footprint


Performance management

For action - PCS and performance management systems

[Posted 11/07/2016]

As part of a week of activity to campaign against unfair and discriminatory performance management systems, PCS is asking members to write to their local MP to ask for their support.

An early day motion has been tabled in Parliament calling on government departments to scrap the discriminatory elements of performance management such as guided distribution and box markings.

I am therefore circulating the following links through regional equality networks for action.

Eaction link http://action.pcs.org.uk/page/ speakout/performance-management

EDM 225 on the parliament.uk page http://www.parliament.uk/edm/2016-17/2557

Simon Elliott

PCS Regional Secretary

As a PCS member you have rights that can help ensure you are treated fairly and which form part of our campaign to ensure the employer negotiates a fair appraisal system with our union.

10-point checklist we ask every member to follow:

Being a member of PCS gives you support and advice on performance management.

IMPORTANT-Please read:

PCS report highlights dangers of civil service performance management:

Discrimination is embedded in the fixed distribution of civil service performance management system (PMS) ratings, new research for PCS has confirmed.

Performance management systems of one sort or another have been imposed across all government departments. They are designed to link performance to pay in crude and relative terms.

The Cabinet Office has stated that the 10% of staff in the "must improve" category or "box marking" will face possible dismissal if their performance doesn't reach the required standard.

A statistical analysis by Keele University of the latest performance management data across 17 civil service departments, published today, has confirmed there are significant differences in outcomes based on gender, age, grade and working patterns, and particularly in relation to disability and ethnicity.

Dr Steve French, an industrial relations specialist, said his findings highlight a number issues not just with performance-related appraisal systems but about organisational structure, job content and employment relations in the civil service.

The study confirms PCS’s own analysis of previous PMS data that black and minority ethnic (BAME) staff do less well under the systems across the civil service. In all departments, except the MoD, BAME staff were less likely to receive "exceed" performance ratings than their white colleagues while in all departments they were more likely to receive a "must improve" rating.

This supports PCS's finding last year that overall, white staff members are 33% more likely to be awarded the top box marking and BAME staff are 52% more likely to be placed in the bottom box marking category.

Disabled members of staff

In all departments, disabled staff were less likely to receive "exceed" performance ratings than their non-disabled colleagues, which again confirms PCS's scrutiny which concluded that nondisabled workers were 45% more likely to be awarded the top box marking than disabled staff, and that disabled workers were, on average, 74% more likely to be put in the bottom performance management category.

How PMS discriminates against older workers is also revealed by the Keele study.

Its data highlights how staff aged 16 to 29 in all departments, except at the MoD, were more likely to receive exceed ratings, with this being particularly prevalent in seven departments, while, in 12 departments, they were also less likely to receive must improve ratings.

Staff aged over 60 were far less likely to secure exceed ratings and more likely to be awarded a must improve mark under the systems, suggesting discriminatory outcomes in the operation of PMS in a number of departments.

PCS has previously identified 55 as the age where the most significant differences in performance outcomes start, with the over 60s being twice as likely as younger workers to be awarded the bottom box marking. We have called for departments to develop strategies to support older workers, especially since more are working longer because of detrimental pension changes and because the proportion of older workers is likely to increase because of later working age and lower recruitment levels.

Genuine appraisal

PCS assistant general secretary Chris Baugh said: “All the data shows that civil service performance management systems are shockingly discriminatory. The reality is that if you are 55, BAME and disabled you are most likely to be in the bottom 10% for box markings. Surely that should tell civil service management that the system needs to be scrapped, or at least radically revised.

“PCS will be working with our groups to explore what forms of action, including legal, political and industrial, might be used to challenge PMS in order to have forced ranking and quotas scrapped and instead have a system that allows for genuine appraisal and equality.”

Dr French stated that while his analysis highlighted that the differences in performance management outcomes between groups of workers were statistically significant, these were not surprising.

"Evidence from the earliest days of performance-related pay in the Inland Revenue highlighted the potential for discriminatory outcomes in the operation of appraisal, findings that have been supported by subsequent research," he said.

"By placing signficant power in the hands of line managers within the current performance management systems, the potential for discrimination continues to exist, but this appears neither to have been recognised or scrutinised at the top of the civil service. Where performance management outcomes are linked to pay, in particular, this raises the potential for legal action under the 2010 Equality Act and requires an urgent response from senior HR management within the service."

Read the full Keele University report:

Get involved

Sign and share our petition to call for the immediate suspension of the current system of performance management.

Personal cases 📋

Anyone experiencing difficulty at work should seek advice from their local PCS rep. Reps can find guidance for personal cases by navigating to the Resources section on the PCS main website.

As previously mentioned, it is very important to notify us of any changes to your contact/location details.

We cannot assist you if we cannot contact you.

Health & Safety

Click here to go to the Health & Safety section of the main PCS website

BPV staff have reported an increase in their stress levels due to the constant flipping/flexing of work streams and the lack of training available. As an Employer HMRC have a duty of care towards their employees and should aim to provide a comfortable working environment for their staff. Anyone with increased levels of anxiety or stress may wish to consider completing an HR Stress 1 form.


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