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Template letter for requesting a pay rise from your employer

You can use this template to write a letter to your employer requesting a pay rise. 

Delete the content in square brackets and replace it with the relevant information for your workplace.

You can also download the template as a Word document.

[RCN Rep details - or if no RCN rep locally, members choose a contact]

[Insert date]

[Insert manager’s name]

[Insert manager’s contact details]

Dear [insert manager’s name],

Pay Claim for staff working at [insert employer name]

It makes good business sense to offer competitive rates of pay and working conditions in order to attract well-trained, motivated staff, who feel valued and engaged by their employer. A stable and committed workforce supports continuity of care, safer practice and improved care which in turn makes the organisation more successful and sustainable.

Together, staff have agreed that it is important that the hard work we deliver in caring for [residents/clients/patients - choose most appropriate description and delete others] is recognised and rewarded fairly. The cost of living continues to rise and so the value of our pay decreases if our pay rates are not increased.

We believe that everyone deserves a fair Living Wage for their work. Paying the real Living Wage has benefits for the business as well as staff. The real Living Wage is currently [insert the latest figure from - don’t forget to use the London rate if your employer is based in London] per hour. Paying staff less than the real Living Wage means they struggle to make ends meet and rely on benefits or tax credits and/or additional jobs or working hours beyond normal full-time hours.

The legal minimum wage for workers 23 and older is [insert latest figure from] per hour. Currently, the lowest paid staff in our organisation are being paid £[insert amount]. Registered Nurses working for our organisation earn £[insert amount]. This compares with a Registered Nurse working as a Staff Nurse (Band 5) in the NHS in [insert your country] starting on £[]/hour (£[]/year), rising to £[]/hour (£[]/year).  [See for the latest figures for your country].

NHS staff also receive additional payments for working unsocial hours – staff working for this employer do not receive such extra payments. Staff working for this employer do not receive additional sick pay (beyond Statutory Sick Pay) or additional maternity pay (beyond Statutory Maternity Pay). This is significantly worse than NHS nursing staff receive.  [Check and delete/amend this paragraph as required] 

Annual leave in this organisation is [insert figure] days per year (including public holidays). NHS annual leave starts at 35 days per year (including public holidays) rising to 37 days after five years of service and then 41 days after ten years of service (in Northern Ireland it is 37, 39 and 43 days including public holidays). We believe additional annual leave would improve morale, wellbeing and retention of staff and seek an additional [insert figure] days of annual leave. [check and delete/amend this paragraph as required].

Inflation is [insert RPI from latest ONS figures:]%. To maintain our pay in line with inflation we seek an increase in our pay rates of at least X% [match this with RPI or higher depending on when staff last had a pay rise] and a minimum pay rate of [insert real Living Wage or your chosen figure]. We look forward to your response.

Thank you for taking the time to consider our pay claim. We look forward to hearing from you.

On behalf of,

[Insert your names]