Remuneration at work

Hi all

I have a question regarding remuneration at work. It’s that time of year again where everyone is on the annual bonus campaign. Despite having had several weeks off work on sick leave with relapses I have got solid evidence of high performance, one of the best in the department.

My question is, can a large organisation use your sick leave against you to try to negotiate down your bonus? I know from a previous manager that the FD a few years ago did use it despite me having performed very well then too.

This to me sounds a bit dodgy, is this discrimination? Surely as the company’s profits grow significantly year on year, and so does my performance it should be based on achievement and contribution to the company’s increasing success?

Would welcome any thoughts.


you have made your case eloquently here so say the same to your manager.

even asking if it could be discrimination.

get your union rep on side.

good luck

carole x

Most bonus systems come with set rules that cover this sort of thing. If you have not yet checked, I would suggest you do so.


To expand on that a bit: most fair-sized organisations with an HR department will want their approach to things like selection/recruitment and remuneration and benefits to have set procedures - part of the reason for this is to make sure that their actions are defensible in the case of legal challenge. If someone says ‘not fair’ they want to be able to say ‘there’s a fair procedure in place, and we followed it’. That is why it seems to me highly likely that your bonus system will have a procedure that will set out the terms and conditions of entitlement in some detail. Whatever that is, they have to stick with it or they will most likely be in breach of contract - your contract of employment will probably imply that it covers all procedures of that kind in force at the time of your employment.


Thanks both, appreciate your replies. Unfortunately despite being a very large organisation the bonus criteria is very much up in the air and there is nothing in my Contract or the Employee Handbook which explains how it’s measured.

They do however know that I have MS and have been very supportive over the years. As my manager has said, I’ve proved myself. It may just be that the FD was a bit naive at the time.

I will raise my concerns with my manager at my appraisal and if necessary I’m sure HR will intervene. For the first time this year we now have quantifiable evidence of performance within the team which will make it harder for the FD to argue, although I’m sure BREXIT will come into it!

Thanks for your thoughts.



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Loublou, in the organisations I worked for, bonus arrangements - particularly those for employees not covered by a TU-negotiated collective agreement - were not included in the employee handbook because they changed every year and sometimes were adjusted mid-year, but nevertheless there was always a formal document somewhere - even if the ‘somewhere’ was deep in the filing pile of the Junior HR Gopher (3rd Class). It’s a corporate governance issue as much as anything. There MUST be something! If it turns out that they do just make it up as they go along, then that is pretty bad. On the other hand, if they are that much of a shambles, they would (if they had any sense) immediately sense danger if they received any sort of fairness challenge and therefore should, if it came to that, be quick to back down for the sake of a quiet life!

Good luck with them, anyway.


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