A recent study into Civil Service pay by Income Data Services (IDS) further exposes the myth that civil servants are paid more than their counterparts in the private sector.  The study reveals that there are gaps of more than £5000 between the Civil Service and the private sector.

The report compares the median salaries of four key grades in the Civil Service against their counterparts in other areas in the private sector.  The PCS website reports on some key findings from the report:

  • Administrative officers across the civil service delivering a range of services such as getting people back into work, tax credits and passports are paid £4,608 (21%) less than their colleagues doing comparable jobs in the private sector. Compared to the rest of the public sector the gap is £4,045 (19%) and for the financial sector the figure is £3,330 (16%).
  • Executive officers who typically work in a supervisory role or a job which requires a vocational qualification are paid £4,783 (18%) less than the private sector and £3,945 (15%) less than the financial sector. Compared to rest of the public sector the gap is £4,503 (17%).
  • Higher executive officers who manage teams of people are paid £5,338 (16%) less than their counterparts in the financial sector and £4,305 (13%) less than those working in the private sector. Compared to rest of the public sector the gap is £1,873 (6%).
  • Administrative assistants who typically undertake clerical duties such as processing benefit claims, tax credits and self assessment forms earn £979 (6.5%) less than the private sector and £572 (3.6%) less than the rest of the public sector.

The IDS findings on the eve of this year’s TUC conference come as employer led organisations attempt to portray civil and public servants as ‘having it easy’ compared to the private sector.

The myth is far from the reality with the average pension for civil servants amounting to £6,500 and dropping to £4,200 once high earners are excluded.

Nearly 100,000 civil and public service jobs have gone over the last 5 years and more than half of the civil service earn less than the UK national wage.

Commenting, Mark Serwotka, PCS general secretary, said: “These findings expose the myth that civil servants enjoy better rates of pay than the private sector.

“The notion that dedicated civil servants who do everything from helping people back to work, to tax credits and passports have it easy is false. Civil service pay has increased at a slower rate than the private sector.

“Over 100,000 civil servants earn less than £15,000 with 40% of jobcentre workers getting no pay rise at all last year. PCS members like other low paid workers continue to bear the brunt of the recession in terms of pay.

“Divisive myths about pay, pensions and job security should not be used as a pretext to freeze pay, cut pensions and lay waste to civil and public services.

“Job cuts, low pay and an average pension of £4,200 are the realities for the people who keep this country running. The government needs to see through the divisive myths about civil and public servants and to recognise the important role they play in delivering vital services.”

Media myths about the civil and public services:

16 Comments CherryPie on Sep 17th 2009

16 Responses to “Media Myths About Civil & Public Services – Part 6”

  1. Once again an excellent article.

    Did you see the lazy hack reports in the Times and the Mail on Sunday and Monday which indicated that Labour subsidised unions in whitehall?

    Basically non sories used to push the right wing agenda of the papers. We know thesestories manipulate the truth but people are taken in

    • CherryPie says:

      Thank You :-)

      I saw the Times article after you mentioned it on James’ blog. I hadn’t seen the one in the mail which now I look is even worse!!!

      It annoys me so much that people are taken in by this rubbish and all sorts of other nonsense too!

  2. jameshigham says:

    Going strong, Cherie.

  3. IRONSIDE says:

    Once again Cheerypie a very interesting article. Thank you.

  4. IRONSIDE says:

    I of course meant Cherrypie, although cheerypie sounds good.

  5. Excellt article. Once again it debunks the usual rubbish written about civil servants.

  6. ubermouth says:

    This is an eye opener, Cherie.
    How do the Civil Service attract or keep eomployees given such a down side?

    • CherryPie says:

      These days, new starters in the Civil Service see it as a staging post for moving on to something different.

      The employees that have been there a long time have stayed for a number of reasons. Low pay balanced by a quality of life and a guaranteed pension along with the wishing to provide a service for the good of society.

  7. Phidelm says:

    Excellent corrective, Cherie. I agree that press coverage has been abysmal and alarmist. And the last thing the UK needs is even more, and potentially wider, social divisions.

  8. Ellee says:

    Cherie, you should write a letter to The Times if they are presenting incorrect information. Get your side of the story across on its own pages.