• 18 March 2020
  • 4 min read

How to get an NHS pay rise working as a nurse

  • Matt Farrah
    Co-Founder - Nurses.co.uk, Socialcare.co.uk, Healthjobs.co.uk, Healthcarejobs.ie
  • 0
  • 2368
There's clear guidance on how you can reach a higher banding. It’s never easy, but it isn’t shrouded in mystery either.

Here's 3 things you can do if you're looking to get a pay rise as an NHS nurse.

1. Boost your knowledge

2. Increase your experience

3. Never stop networking

One of the many great things about being an NHS Nurse is how structured your career is.

And that sense of structure is especially apparent when it comes to your salary.

In the private sector, you’re at the mercy of forces far beyond your control.

Excellent performance and personal development could lead to pay increases, but it’s never guaranteed.

In fact, nothing concerning your income is certain.

Meanwhile, as an NHS Nurse, there is a clear and transparent structure built around what you earn.

Long before you begin your first position you’ll know what you’ll be paid (you can see information about NHS pay here), and how much your income will increase by each year until you reach the top of your banding.

And better still, there is clear guidance available on precisely how you can reach a higher banding – and therefore, a significant pay rise – throughout your career. It’s never easy – but it isn’t shrouded in mystery either.

There are some specific requirements in each banding that you’ll need to refer to.

But broadly, here are the things you need to do consistently to boost your chances of climbing the banding ladder.

1. Boost your knowledge

As soon as you start working as a Band 5 Nurse, you’ll find there are abundant opportunities to develop your knowledge.

And if you want to accelerate your earnings, you’ll need to take advantage of them as quickly as possible.

Ultimately, a Band 6 position demands more senior duties, and that demands more study and experience.

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So, try to attend and complete as many top-up courses as you can.

Many subjects are available but it makes sense to cover courses like myocardial infarction (heart attacks) and CVA (strokes) if you’re planning on continuing to be a General Nurse.

Not all of these courses are free, but trusts will often fund them.

However, the reality is that the more courses you complete, and the more quickly you complete them, the faster you’ll increase your pay packet.

2. Increase your experience

When applying for roles in higher bandings, having varied experience within different care settings and different specialisms definitely helps too.

Of course, in full-time NHS roles this can be difficult – but there are ways of securing this useful, extra experience.

Seeking bank or agency work, even on an occasional basis, can be really valuable.

This gives you access to roles in a variety of settings and an opportunity to learn new first-hand skills. It also allows you to network and meet new nurses, whose own experiences will be invaluable to learn from.

That’s not forgetting the fact it can bring in some handy extra money, too.

3. Never stop networking

Once you’re in a Band 6 role, progression towards Bands 7 and 8 becomes more about management.

To put yourself in a position to apply for these roles, you’ll really need to know your stuff.

Of course, continuous studying and building experience across multiple departments is vital.

But at this level, making the right connections will be extremely important.

If you get offered more responsibility or the opportunity to become a linked nurse, take it.

And when you meet matrons and senior nurses, get to know them.

See these people as mentors who can show you precisely what you’ll need to do to reach the upper bandings.

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If you’d like help with boosting your CV, regular industry insights and all the latest relevant roles as they appear, join Nurses.co.uk here.

About the author

  • Matt Farrah
    Co-Founder - Nurses.co.uk, Socialcare.co.uk, Healthjobs.co.uk, Healthcarejobs.ie

I studied English before moving into publishing in the mid 90s. I co-founded this and our other three sites in 2008. I wanted to provide a platform that gives a voice to those working in health and social care. I'm fascinated, generally, by the career choices we all make. But I'm especially interested in the stories told by those who choose to spend their life supporting others. They are mostly positive and life-affirming stories, despite the considerable challenges and burdens faced.

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  • Matt Farrah
    Co-Founder - Nurses.co.uk, Socialcare.co.uk, Healthjobs.co.uk, Healthcarejobs.ie

About the author

  • Matt Farrah
    Co-Founder - Nurses.co.uk, Socialcare.co.uk, Healthjobs.co.uk, Healthcarejobs.ie

I studied English before moving into publishing in the mid 90s. I co-founded this and our other three sites in 2008. I wanted to provide a platform that gives a voice to those working in health and social care. I'm fascinated, generally, by the career choices we all make. But I'm especially interested in the stories told by those who choose to spend their life supporting others. They are mostly positive and life-affirming stories, despite the considerable challenges and burdens faced.

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