Pay structures give a framework for wage progression. They can also help encourage appropriate behaviours and performance. Pay progression describes how employees can increase their pay either within or outside a pay structure.

This factsheet explores the purpose of pay structures. It also introduces the ones that are most often used. It considers local pay structures, identifying the main approaches to regional pay differentiation. It examines the impact of pay structures on an employee’s ability to progress and reviews the various ways used to determine pay progression.

This factsheet was last updated by Charles Cotton: Senior Performance and Reward Adviser, CIPD

Charles directs CIPD’s research agenda and public policy on performance and reward. He speaks for CIPD at government consultations on topics such as, pensions, retirement, CEO remuneration, low pay and employee tax.  

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