Association of Higher Civil and Public Servants


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Civil Service performance bonuses - Irish Times

(17 Dec 2013)

Sir, – Your Editorial writer “Scrap the bonus” (December 11th) appears to have returned from a time warp in relation to a number of assertions made.

The performance bonus system which the writer says should be abolished or radically changed was abolished three years ago.Furthermore, the article implies that the performance bonus system was widely applicable. This is also false.

Our members never received performances bonuses. Nor did 97 per cent of civil servants. The bonus was available to a very small number of civil servants at assistant secretary grade.

The article states promotion in the civil service is based on Buggins’ Turn. This is also incorrect. The reality is that promotion in the civil service is based on merit with staff competing in a competency-based process overseen by the Public Appointments Commission.

The writer also suggests that underperformance in the private sector can reach as high as 30 per cent without reference to any source. Indeed, if 30 per cent of the private sector employees are underperforming, it must be a major headache for the IDA when trying to attract foreign investment.

This union has been actively engaged for the past number of years in changing work practices and modernisation while having had their pay cut three times since the austerity programme began. It has not been an easy journey. Misinformed prejudices, such as those articulated in the Editorial, undermines this entire process and the individuals who have been impacted. – Yours, etc,


General Secretary,

Association of Higher Civil

and Public Servants,

Fleming’s Place, Dublin 4.

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Association of Higher Civil and Public Servants