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Pay Progression Toolkit


To help us give the best possible care and services, whatever our role, it is important that we understand what is expected of us, how our contribution helps the organisation achieve its aims and that we are rewarded for doing the right things well and not just because we have had another year in post.

The new pay system introduced in 2018 helps ensure that all staff have the appropriate knowledge and skills they need to carry out their roles. It allows faster progression to the top of the pay bands through fewer pay step points and is underpinned by annual appraisals and ongoing conversations between all staff and managers about performance and development.   

The revised NHS Wales Progression Policy outlines the process including:

  • Who does what and when
  • Agreeing the rating
  • Decisions to delay a pay step
  • Dealing with disagreement
  • Band 8c/d and 9 roles 
  • Absence from work when a pay step is due

To support the process, a Guide for Managers and Staff and Pay Progression Process flowchart have been developed.


It is essential that managers record the outcome of the Pay Progression Appraisal on ESR; the employee will not move onto the next pay step otherwise. Guidance on How To Record a Pay Progression Appraisal has also been created.

Please note:  If the pay step was initially deferred because not all of the standards were met, but the manager and employee have met again and agreed that the requirements have now been satisfied and the pay step can be awarded, ESR must be updated and Payroll contacted and asked to apply the increase as this will not happen automatically.


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