1. What is the scheme?

1.1 The University recognises and values the hard work, commitment and achievements of all staff. The Rewarding Excellence awards are intended to provide recognition to those staff from grades 1 to 8 (or equivalent) who have demonstrated sustained achievement over and above the expectations of their job description, over a significant period of time (up to and including the 2017/18 year). Achievements must have been outstanding and worthy of particular note. The scheme provides an annual opportunity to be considered for an award of one additional incremental point, which will then become the new salary point of the member of staff receiving the award.

1.2 The University also recognises and values outstanding achievements of a one-off or short-term nature. Staff should refer to details of the Making the Difference scheme for information about awards of that kind.

2. Reasons for the scheme

2.1 To provide staff with a tangible reward for a sustained, outstanding contribution above and beyond the expectations of the job description.

2.2 To assist progress towards achieving the objectives of the University by motivating staff to achieve excellence.

2.3 To reinforce the values of the University by publicly acknowledging achievements that embody those values as laid out in the University Strategy.

2.4 This scheme is not intended to replace the process of promotion (for Academic, Research and Teaching staff) or of role review (for all other staff). In considering the role and/or the contribution of a member of staff, individuals or their managers should consider promotion or role review as an alternative to Rewarding Excellence.

3. Principles of the scheme

3.1 The scheme is intended to reward those who can demonstrate sustained achievement over and above the expectations of their job description.

3.2 The Rewarding Excellence scheme is not intended to encourage staff to work excessive hours, and judgements on the merits of nominations will be based on qualitative rather than quantitative assessments.

3.3 The scheme should operate with consistency, fairness and transparency in order to retain the confidence of staff.

3.4 The scheme should operate with equality of access across grades 1 to 8 (or equivalent), and with broad equality of outcomes as one of its aims. Monitoring will ensure that awards will, over time, reflect the workforce of the University regarding gender, ethnicity, etc.

3.5 The scheme should not be administratively burdensome at any stage of its operation.

4. Eligible staff

4.1 All staff in grades 1 to 8 (or equivalent) who have been employed by the University since at least 1 October 2016 and have not achieved a similar award within the last 2 years are eligible to be nominated. Staff who have been nominated within the last 2 years but have not been successful are eligible for further nomination at the next opportunity.

4.2 The scheme is open to staff who have changed roles within the University, but can demonstrate the same outstanding levels of skill or achievement in each role.

4.3 Staff who have been successful in either academic promotion or role review within the last 12 months are not eligible for a Rewarding Excellence award.

4.4 Staff are eligible to apply whether their contribution has been made individually or as a member of a team.

5. Nomination process

5.1 All nominees must have an agreed, up-to-date job description that clarifies the expectations of their role. This document must accompany the nomination form in all cases. No additional information or evidence will be accepted.

5.2 Heads of Department/ line managers have a responsibility to monitor the contribution of all their staff and respond accordingly. Discussions that take place in performance reviews are often a trigger for this sort of consideration. As part of the monitoring process managers should identify cases where standards of excellence are exceptional and above the expectations of the role, and have been sustained for a significant period.

5.3 It is not possible to be specific about the length of time necessary to demonstrate that outstanding performance has been sustained, since it will vary from job to job. The work cycle of a Finance Administrator will be different to that of a a Senior Lecturer. Appropriate detail of timescales should be included in the application form and be relevant to the individual role.

5.4 Individuals may be nominated for an award by their Head of Department or a line manager, or they may nominate themselves. All nomination forms must be authorised as factually accurate by the Head of Department. In all cases the nomination form must be accompanied by an agreed, up to date job description.

5.5 Nominations are submitted to HR each year.

5.6 All successful nominees will be notified via their Head of Department or Director in January and will receive one additional increment in their salary from January. Staff may be in receipt of more than one additional increment where they have been successful with nominations submitted at least two years apart.

5.7 It will not be possible to discuss results: as such there will be no review process.

6. Monitoring Process

6.1 The Remuneration Sub-Group will receive annual data on the operation of the scheme, and will look for evidence that outcomes are broadly equal over time for job families, grade levels, departments, gender, ethnicity, disability, age and other relevant categories of staff.

6.2 The operation of the scheme will be reviewed every 3 years to ensure it continues to meet its stated purpose in the most appropriate way.