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Reward and Recognition Scheme

The University has in place a reward and recognition scheme for academic-related and support staff.  The Scheme has two elements:

  1. an annual gathered field review, the ‘Awards for Excellence Scheme’, at departmental level, awarding incremental payments within a simplified framework (a non-pensionable lump sum to the value of one increment, or a pensionable advancement to the next point on the incremental scale);
  2. a ‘Recognition Scheme’, under which smaller, more timely awards (£200 before tax in all cases) can be made at departmental level to recognise ‘one-off’, outstanding contributions at any time of the year.

Awards for Excellence Scheme : scheme for 2024 now Open

The purpose of the Awards for Excellence Scheme is to recognise staff contributions to the work of the University and to reward exceptional individual contributions, (based on performance during the 12 months to 31 May 2024).  All eligible staff (Grades 1 to 10) should be reviewed as part of the department’s annual gathered field exercise.  Note that this is the only mechanism for awarding incremental progression for individuals who are at the top of the scale bar or in the discretionary pay range for the grade.

Line managers should conduct an initial review of all the staff they manage against the criteria for awards.  The scheme is designed to reward employees who:

  • have performed well in all the key areas of their jobs; and

  • have consistently demonstrated exceptional performance, significantly above that which might reasonably have been expected for their grade, or

  • have demonstrated an exceptional commitment to the department valuesthrough examples provided against the expected behaviours

Some examples of values that could be rewarded are:

  1. RESPECTFUL & KIND - Activities and/or behaviours that demonstrate practical, positive impacts on diversity and inclusion in the department; maintaining positive, respectful and inclusive relationships with colleagues, showing leadership in promoting inclusive and anti-racist behaviour, involvement in department-wide activities to address equality
  2. CREATIVE/AMBITIOUS - Demonstrating problem solving and flexibility of approaches to work especially with remote/hybrid working, finding more efficient, cost-effective ways of doing things; attending to sustainability and impact; finding ways to work better
  3. FAIR/COLLABORATIVE - Working co-operatively and supportively with colleagues and ensuring fair distribution of workloads; supporting wellbeing; being encouraging and not judgemental; active leadership and participation in wellbeing initiatives and activities;

The scheme should not be used to specifically to reward the working of long hours; for those required to work above their grade; or for retention purposes.  Please discuss with Nicola Webb if any of these situations apply as there are other ways of addressing them.

Where someone has been re-graded to a higher grade within the performance year, the panel would expect any recommendation for Reward for Excellence to include clear evidence of a particularly exceptional performance over and above the assumption of additional duties that resulted in the re-grade (i.e. we must not reward the same evidence twice).

Individuals can also self-nominate, but must discuss with their line manager before they do so.

To submit a nomination, please complete the appropriate nomination form below and send it, with appropriate signatures, to by 1 July 2024.  Please read the further information on the scheme before submitting a nomination.

If you have any queries on any aspect of the scheme, please contact Nicola Webb.

Nominations will be considered by a department panel, comprising Catherine Pope (Chair), Nicola Small, Pete Scarborough and Emily Bongard. Line managers and individuals will be notified of the outcome in July. Payments will be made with effect from August 2024.

To be eligible for the scheme, individuals must have been in post for at least 6 months. There are some exclusions to eligibility which are outlined in the online guidance

Please note that we are restricted in the total costs of awards we can make (0.35% of the department’s total pay bill), so only a small proportion of staff (up to 10%) will receive awards. 

The department Values Award scheme is a separate peer nomination scheme which closed on 14 May 2024. If those nominated have made a significant enough contribution to the values and have performed well in all key areas of their jobs they may be additionally eligible for an Award for Excellence.


  1. Awards for Excellence Scheme Criteria
  2. NDPCHS Manager Nomination Form - Award for Excellence
  3. NDPCHS Self Nomination form: Award for Excellence
  4. Awards for Excellence Statistics


The recognition scheme is to facilitate timely recognition of one-off contributions or examples of high performance by individuals or teams at any time in the year. 

Nominations need to be made by managers using the form below. Please email completed forms to Decisions are made by the Head of Department, Richard Hobbs. The recognition award will be £200 in all cases.

NDPCHS Recognition nomination form