PSPC Statement setting out its approach to Phase 2
The PSPC has adopted the following approach to Phase 2 of its work which is to be the subject of a final report from the Commission to the Minister by the end of 2018.
Building on the approach set out in Chapter 6 of the Report of the Public Service Pay Commission published in May 2017 and consistent with Section 3 of the Public Service Stability Agreement 2018-2020 and its Terms of Reference, the Commission will commence by gathering additional relevant information on those grades / specialities where evidence of specific difficulties in recruitment and/or retention have already been identified in Chapter 6 of its first Report.
1. As a first step,
- The relevant staff representative bodies who are Parties to the Public Service Stability Agreement 2018-2020 (the Agreement) will be invited to make written evidence-based submissions on recruitment and /or retention difficulties to the Commission. This invitation will issue in October. The Public Services Committee of ICTU will be asked to co-ordinate responses to the Commission in respect of those Unions affiliated to ICTU. This invitation will issue separately to relevant Unions / Staff Associations who are party to the Agreement but not affiliates of ICTU.
- At the same time the relevant public service employers will be invited to provide detailed evidence-based data in respect of those grades / specialities where evidence of recruitment and/or retention difficulties were found to exist in Chapter 6 of its first report, and where the staff representative bodies representing those grades / specialities are parties to the Agreement; The Commission will ask DPER to co-ordinate this request on behalf of public service employers.
2. The Commission will adopt a modular approach to reporting on its work as follows:
- Module 1 – Report on issues relating to Nursing, Consultants and NCHDs by end June 2018;
- Module 2 – Report on those other grades / specialities where evidence of recruitment and/or retention difficulties were found to exist in Chapter 6 of its first report by end December 2018; This work will proceed in parallel with module 1 but with a later reporting time to allow for detailed analysis of all the issues involved.
- Recruitment and /or retention issues additional to those identified in the Commission’s first Report – In respect of any additional issues emerging from the call for submissions, the Commission will seek further evidence, as appropriate, including data from the public service employer. The Commission will then consider to what extent, a difficulty exists in terms of recruitment and retention for those additional specific groups/grades/sectors of the public service. Where evidence is found to substantiate the existence of such difficulties, the Commission will then assess the timeframe and resources required to fully examine those additional issues and will, where necessary, engage with the Minister for PER in relation such timing and / or resourcing issues.
3. The Commission will adopt the following methodology to ensure a robust evidence-based approach to this exercise:
A. Analysis of data provided by the public service employers and by the staff representative bodies to substantiate claims of recruitment and /or retention difficulties.
B. Examination of supply issues, including consultation with Regulatory bodies, Training bodies and other relevant organisations, in respect of any such supply issues linked to recruitment and /or retention for groups/grades/sectors of the public service;
C. Examination of remuneration issues including:
(i) The totality of the current remuneration package available;
(ii) Analysis of the planned future pay adjustments and alleviations from current rates of the PRD provided for in the Public Service Stability Agreement 2018-2020;
(iii) Remaining FEMPI pay unwinding post 2020, where applicable;
D. Commissioning external expertise to investigate the underlying causal factors impacting on recruitment and / or retention;
E. Examine arrangements and best practice in other jurisdictions and, where appropriate, the domestic private sector in Ireland in relation to such issues, particularly in respect of those areas where a global labour market exists as well as the responses being adopted in other jurisdictions where similar recruitment and retention problems pertain.
4. The Commission will generate options to address the specific recruitment and /or retention issues identified, costed where feasible, having full regard to the fiscal constraints and requirements on Government to manage the Exchequer pay bill in a sustainable way over the medium and long-term.