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Legal Updates

Is the NMW evidence of successful ongoing national pay bargaining arrangements?

08 December 2010 #Employment

National-level pay setting remains common in large multi-site public and private organisations such as supermarkets, schools, banks and engineering construction sites.
Some of the benefits of national pay setting that employers find are:

  • Aiding financial control and pay bill management
  • Aiding in the tendering process if labour costs are known
  • Avoids duplication of the bargaining process
  • Avoids uncontrolled differences in pay

The National Minimum Wage, although not officially set through a collective pay bargaining process, is an evidence based pay setting arrangement between the government and the Low Pay Commission (LPC). It came about to protect low paid workers after when most of the last wages councils were abolished in the 1990s.
When it was first introduced in April 1999, the minimum wage was £3.60 per hour and £3.00 for 18 to 21-year-olds. It is currently £5.93 a hour, £4.92 for 18 to 20-year-olds and £3.64 for 16 and 17-year-olds. The apprentice rate, for under 19s or those over 19 in the first year of training is £2.50.
The BBC reported last week that the minimum wage has been named as the most successful government policy of the past 30 years in a survey of British political experts.

Clarkslegal, specialist Employment lawyers in London, Reading and throughout the Thames Valley.
For further information about this or any other Employment matter please contact Clarkslegal's employment team by email at by telephone 020 7539 8000 (London office), 0118 958 5321 (Reading office) or by completing the form on this page.
This information is for guidance purposes only and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. Please refer to the full General Notices on our website.

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