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Good News: New Pay Structure For Civil Servants

The Government’s decision to pay civil servants based on their experience, seniority and academic credentials starting this month has been praised by labour representatives who claim that doing so will boost employee motivation and productivity.

According to the new policy, a civil servant who continues to work as a teacher, nurse, or in another occupation will receive pay increases as they earn higher qualifications and as their number of years of service and experience rise.

Both typically perceive civil servants to be more capable of increasing their output and level of expertise, and the proper notching of salaries reflects this with higher pay, Herald reports.


Given that they are hired for a job with little supervision, the number of promotion posts is extremely low in many civil service areas.

The abandonment of advancement procedures for civil servants in 2012—paying just for the job without additional compensation for higher qualifications, seniority, or experience—led to the “bunching” of salaries in every grade, with an experienced teacher, for instance, earning the same as a newcomer.

Most civil servants’ unions, especially those in the education field, were displeased with this.

They argued that the salary difference between grades was insignificant and resulted in many members being reluctant to upgrade their own educational qualifications and making it harder to retain that vital segment of staff who had a great deal of experience and were, to be blunt, better than those without.

Apex Council chairperson Ms Cecilia Alexander said the new pay structure was a welcome development meant to motivate employees.

“This was part of the agreement we made last year with the Government as workers’ representatives. Workers should be awarded according to their level of education as well as seniority within their work place. There is a need to award long-serving employees, who used to receive notches which is an incentive for their dedication to work,” said Ms Alexander.

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She said the private sector awards long-serving employees as part of incentivising them, recognition of their loyalty to the organisation so they stay in post, as well as their general ability to use their honed skills more productively.

Zimbabwe Nurses Association president Enoch Dongo weighed in saying it was long overdue. He commended the Second Republic and President Mnangagwa for walking the talk in implementing what worker’s representatives were bargaining for.

“We want to thank the Government for that and the President for implementing that long-standing issue which was last done in 2012. It is important to pay workers according to their qualifications and seniority since it will increase production and it also motivates workers. The move is also in line with Vision 2030 to achieve an upper middle-income economy.

“Civil servants implement Government policies, once they are rewarded we rest assured work will be done.”

The move taken by the Government, Mr Dongo said, will improve the quality of work and instil discipline among workers.

Zimbabwe Teachers Association (ZTA) president Mr Richard Gundani said the new structure was one of fundamental rights enshrined in the conditions of service.

“This gives meaning to promotion and seniority. Performance needs to be rewarded always. This used to be done when class teachers used to be promoted using that criterion. We welcome the development and urge the Government to do it in earnest and in consultation with the concerned unions,” he said.

Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe’s secretary general Mr Raymond Majongwe said: “As far as we are concerned it’s a positive development. It’s now time for implementation, that’s what we have agreed at the National Joint Negotiating Council”.

Public Service Commission Secretary Dr Tsitsi Choruma said the advancement policy will start to be operational this month.

“Following engagements in the context of the National Joint Negotiating Council, Government resolved to reactivate the advancement of all civil servants in terms of the application advancement procedures.

“Accordingly, the Public Service Commission embarked on and finalised the placement of all civil servants in their respective grades by the end of December 2022.

“All civil servants will, therefore, be paid the salaries that reflect their advancement and placement within their grades with effect from January 2023.”

To ensure no beneficiaries are left behind, Dr Choruma said, the PSC has since directed heads of line ministries to gather all relevant documents or higher qualifications from workers under their purview until the end of the first quarter of this year.

“In pursuit of the foregoing, all the heads of line ministries are implored to submit all relevant higher qualifications obtained by civil servants under their ministries and departments to the Public Service Commission to facilitate the completion of the advancement exercise by March 31, 2023.”

She said the reactivation is in line with the Principal Procedures in the Public Service 2018.

“According to the Principal Procedures, advancement is the vertical movement of employees within their grades after a given number of years of service, the demonstration of satisfactory performance and/or acquisition of specified or relevant qualifications.”

Civil servants’ union leaders lauded the latest development, saying it was long overdue.

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