British Broadcasting Corporation Room BC2 A4 Broadcast Centre White City Wood Lane London W12 7TP
Telephone 020 8008 2882 Email email@example.com
8 November 2017
Dear Mr Craig, Freedom of Information Request – RFI20170537
Thank you for your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) received on
7th April 2017, seeking the following information:
The BBC states in its Annual Report 2015/16 that Executive and Senior Management salaries are
discounted by 50-80%.
In the past year there has been further recruitment and the BBC has awarded major pay increases
to some Executives and Senior Managers.
Last year, the BBC responded in RFI120160013 that it had not carried out an efficiency report on
senior management pay since September 2014 and has not identified comparator roles. In light of
this I make the following request:
1) What evidence does the BBC hold backing up the statements in the Annual Report 2015/16
that Executive and Senior Management salaries are discounted 50-80% against market salaries?
Please note that the BBC Annual Report and Accounts 2015/16 reads:
“The BBC continues the practice of discounting BBC executive directors’ pay against the
commercial sector and has maintained the freeze in pay of executive directors. The agreed
discount remains at between 50% and 80% below commercial sector comparisons.”
The 50-80% discount applies to Executive Directors, this is reviewed each year by our
assurance report conducted by Willis Towers Watson
2) When did any pay positioning analysis of Executive and Senior Management take place that
evidences discounted pay claims stated in the Annual Report 2015/16 ?
As above the Executives Directors discount is reviewed annually
3) What market pay data were Executive and Senior Management pay increases in 2015/16
Executive Directors are compared to Public Sector, Commercial Public Sector and
Commercial sector, Senior Management are reviewed against Willis Towers Watson
comparators for Media, General Industry and the Technology Sector dependant on Job.
4) As of 1 September 2016 and based on current, relevant pay positioning data held by the BBC,
how many staff in each of Executive Board, and SM1 and SM2 (by division) can the BBC
categorically state fall into the following :
- paid in excess of commercial sector
- paid at commercial sector rate
- direct remuneration reduced by 1-9%
- direct remuneration reduced by 10-19%
- direct remuneration reduced by 20-29%
- direct remuneration reduced by 30-39%
- direct remuneration reduced by 40-49%
- direct remuneration reduced by 50-59%
- direct remuneration reduced by 60-69%
- direct remuneration reduced by 70-79%
- direct remuneration reduced by 80-89%
- direct remuneration reduced by 90-99%
Under section 1(1) of the Act, I can confirm that the BBC does not hold this information.
While the BBC holds some of the underlying information necessary to answer this request,
the production of the requested information requires a significant level of judgement, for
example in the identification of appropriate comparator roles, and in accordance with the
Information Commissioner’s guidance, the requested information is therefore not held.
5) At what rate is the pay comparison with set, for example, median, average or top of the scale?
The BBC compares salaries to the median of the external benchmark but takes internal
benchmarks into account when setting pay.
6) What is the difference between the BBC's stated comparator in the Annual Report 2015/16 of
"commercial sector" and the previous comparator of "commercial public sector".
As advised by Willis Towers Watson, we use comparator groups as below, one of which is
Commercial Public Sector (example organisations included in the groups are provided in
• Public sector: (Civil Service, Met Office, NHS England, Ofcom)
• Commercial Public Sector: (Channel 4, Crossrail, Network Rail, Royal Mail, Transport
• Commercial Sector: a broad sample of general industry companies with revenues
similar to those of the BBC (excluding financial services).
Please note that, as set out in section 6(1)(b)(i ) of the FOI Act, our subsidiaries (including BBC
Studios & Post Production Ltd, UKTV, BBC Global News Ltd and BBC Worldwide Ltd), as wel as
the charities BBC Media Action and BBC Children in Need, are not subject to the Act, therefore
information for their personnel is not included in the figures quoted above.
I hope this response satisfies your request.
Please accept our sincere apologies for the delay providing this response to you.
If you plan to publish or broadcast a story using the information provided in this response, please
include the following statement from the BBC.
A BBC spokesman said:
“We’ve halved the number of senior managers across the organisation saving millions of pounds
from the pay bill and their salaries remain below market levels”. Appeal Rights
If you are not satisfied that we have complied with the Act in responding to your request, you
have the right to an internal review by a BBC senior manager or legal adviser. Please contact us at
the address above, explaining what you would like us to review and including your reference
number. If you are not satisfied with the internal review, you can appeal to the Information
Commissioner. The contact details are: Information Commissioner's Office, Wycliffe House,
Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF, Tel: 0303 123 1113 (local rate) or 01625 545 745
(national rate) or see http://www.ico.org.uk/.
Director of Reward