Pay, not culture, is the real obstacle to reinvigorating the Senior Civil Service, says FDA


12 October 2015
For immediate release

In response to a story in The Independent, the FDA has highlighted evidence from its annual Senior Civil Service (SCS) pay survey which shows that 91% of the respondents who were recruited from outside of the civil service, are dissatisfied with the overall pay arrangements in the civil service.

The Baxendale report , that prompted the story in The Independent, is quoted as saying that the civil service was still 'failing to attract and retain talent from the private sector - despite efforts by ministers to open up recruitment'.

Assistant General Secretary Naomi Cooke said:

"We are once again skirting round the central problem with recruitment and retention in the Senior Civil Service: the Government simply does not have an approach to pay and reward that will attract and retain the skills and experience it needs. The last FDA SCS Pay Survey revealed that 91% of those recruited from outside the civil service were dissatisfied with the overall pay arrangements in the SCS and fewer than 2 in 5 would recommend the civil service to friends or family. The Baxendale report did not look at the core issue of pay as a disincentive to recruitment and retention to the SCS, the FDA urges the Government to focus on the real issue rather than looking round for something to blame."

Notes for editors

1. To read more about the FDA's evidence to the Senior Salaries Review Body (SSRB) here.

2. The FDA is the trade union and professional body representing 18,000 of the UK's senior public servants. Our members include policy advisors, senior managers, tax inspectors, economists, statisticians, accountants, special advisers, government lawyers, diplomats, crown prosecutors and NHS managers.

3. The FDA can be described as "the senior public servants' union" and should be referred to simply as "The FDA".

4. The FDA can be found on Twitter @FDA_union and at

5. For further information contact:

· Naomi Cooke, Assistant General Secretary, tel: 020 7401 5555

· Katie Lazell, Communications Officer, tel: 020 7401 5588 or 07939257985