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3. Features of key remuneration concepts

3.1 Comparison of Key Remuneration Components by Classification

The comparison of the different components of the Total Reward (TR) provides an understanding of the proportion that each component contributes to the whole TR.

Table 3.1 provides data on the components of TR across all classifications. It shows the proportion that Base Salary, benefits and bonuses contribute to the TR.

For all classifications, the largest component of TR, apart from Base Salary, is generally the employer superannuation contribution.

Across the non-SES classifications, Base Salary makes up between 84.0% and 86.7% of the TR received by employees. The benefits component makes up between 13.3% and 15.6%, most of which is the employer superannuation contribution.At the SES levels, the benefits component provides a greater contribution to the TR than it does for the non-SES classifications. This varies from 21.1% at the SES 3 classification to 24.4% at the SES 1 classification. The benefits component is primarily composed of the employer superannuation contribution and motor vehicle arrangements.

Bonus payments continue to make up only a minor part of the TR. The use of performance bonus arrangements across all classifications has increased from 16.6% of employees receiving a performance bonus in 2014 to 17.6% in 2015. At the SES classifications, the use of performance bonuses has decreased from 12.3% in 2014 to 7.0% in 2015. Bonuses contribute to between 0.2% and 0.4% of the TR received for the SES classifications and up to 1.1% for the non-SES classifications.

Further information on the breakdown of Base Salary, TRP, and TR can be found in Section 7: Remuneration Findings by Classification.

Table 3.1: Composition of median Total Reward by classification
Classification Base salary component of TR Benefit component of TR Bonus component of TR
$ % $ % $ %
Graduate 60,158 86.7 9,264 13.3 0 0.0
APS 1 47,736 85.8 7,635 13.7 262 0.5
APS 2 54,588 84.9 8,993 14.0 725 1.1
APS 3 61,512 85.2 10,604 14.7 83 0.1
APS 4 69,239 86.1 10,913 13.6 243 0.3
APS 5 74,451 85.0 12,966 14.8 130 0.1
APS 6 86,923 84.7 15,438 15.0 293 0.3
EL 1 108,382 84.9 18,887 14.8 432 0.3
EL 2 133,905 84.0 24,802 15.6 692 0.4
SES 1 181,006 75.2 58,874 24.4 931 0.4
SES 2 232,644 77.4 67,235 22.4 835 0.3
SES 3 312,000 78.7 83,599 21.1 854 0.2

3.2 Motor Vehicle Allowances

Motor vehicle cost is the annualised cost of a motor vehicle that an employee has for private use. This includes the provision of a motor vehicle, running costs, insurance, repairs, maintenance and any fringe benefits tax payable. Cash-in-lieu of a vehicle is the total paid to an employee where they opt for cash instead of a motor vehicle. Table 3.2 combines these allowances by classification.

Consistent with previous years, the use of motor vehicle allowances was low in the non-SES classifications. The highest use of motor vehicle allowances at these classifications was at the EL 2 classification with 2.6% of employees receiving a benefit. The number of employees at other non-SES classifications that received a motor vehicle allowance was very small.

There was a reduction in the proportion of SES employees who received a motor vehicle related allowance from 72.3% in 2014 to 67.8% in 2015.

There was no change in the median amounts paid for motor vehicle benefits for SES 1 and SES 2 employees, and an increase of 3.4% for employees at the SES 3 classification.

Figure 3.1: Proportion of SES employees who received a motor vehicle allowance, 2011 to 2015

 

Table 3.2: Motor vehicle allowance by classification
Classification Total employees n Employees with allowance n Proportion who received allowance % P5 $ Q1 $ Median $ Q3 $ P95 $ Average $
Graduate 1,159 0 0.0 . . . . . .
APS 1 804 0 0.0 . . . . . .
APS 2 3,265 0 0.0 . . . . . .
APS 3 15,493 0 0.0 . . . . . .
APS 4 29,181 0 0.0 . . . . . .
APS 5 19,835 0 0.0 . . . . . .
APS 6 30,673 2 0.0 190 190 3,835 7,479 7,479 3,835
EL 1 24,782 8 0.0 430 3,268 8,205 9,888 14,409 7,195
EL 2 11,335 291 2.6 3,561 23,506 25,208 26,000 31,000 22,631
SES 1 1,897 1,298 68.4 18,500 25,000 26,000 27,522 31,000 25,269
SES 2 528 351 66.5 19,528 25,806 27,000 28,000 33,000 26,225
SES 3 113 72 63.7 19,869 27,818 30,000 30,514 35,000 28,612
Total 139,065 2,022 1.5  

3.3 Performance Bonus

Performance bonuses may be available to APS employees through an enterprise agreement or other employment instrument. The availability, eligibility and amounts vary across agencies. While performance is also recognised through other mechanisms such as salary or incremental advancement (which is reflected in Base Salary movement), this section reports only on performance bonus payments.

There were 24,288 employees, or 17.8% of the non-SES workforce, and 178 employees, or 7.0% of the SES workforce who received a performance bonus in 2015.

The proportion of employees who received performance bonuses varied across the non-SES classification levels from 0.3% at the Graduate level to 24.0% at the APS 2 classification.

As few enterprise agreements contain provisions for performance bonuses, the figures and the non-SES classifications have been dominated by an agency which has a high proportion of their workforce at the top of their classification salary ranges. The enterprise agreement covering this agency provides for a bonus payment, in lieu of salary advancement, linked to satisfactory performance.

Figure 3.2 shows that the proportion of SES employees that received a performance bonus in the past five years. The proportion of SES employees that received a bonus in 2015 is about a quarter of the proportion in 2011.

The median performance bonus values decreased across all SES classifications between 2014 and 2015; however the average increased for the SES 2 and SES 3 classifications.

Figure 3.2: Proportion of SES employees who received a performance bonus, 2011 to 2015

Table 3.3: Performance bonus by classification
Classification Total employees n Employees with bonus n Proportion who received bonus % P5 $ Q1 $ Median $ Q3 $ P95 $ Average $
Graduate 1,159 3 0.3 1,098 1,098 2,231 2,257 2,257 1,862
APS 1 804 75 9.3 435 725 725 725 725 706
APS 2 3,265 784 24.0 599 725 725 725 725 715
APS 3 15,493 3,338 21.5 290 725 725 1,239 1,240 1,025
APS 4 29,181 1,898 6.5 346 725 725 725 3,724 970
APS 5 19,835 4,384 22.1 694 743 743 1,456 1,513 1,178
APS 6 30,673 5,906 19.3 34 868 868 1,019 4,189 1,462
EL 1 24,782 5,193 21.0 968 1,084 1,084 2,159 5,489 1,925
EL 2 11,335 2,707 23.9 1,339 1,339 1,757 5,930 15,047 6,101
SES 1 1,897 133 7.0 2,500 3,222 10,585 14,398 22,409 10,386
SES 2 528 37 7.0 5,000 19,209 21,954 32,106 214,339 48,026
SES 3 113 8 7.1 7,500 15,000 27,493 37,500 661,844 103,666
Total 139,065 24,466 17.6  

3.4 Superannuation

The median employer superannuation contribution for the non-SES classifications in 2015 was between 15.4% and 18.0% of the employee's base salary, dependent on the superannuation scheme that individual employees participated in.

APS employee superannuation fund membership has been reported by four categories:

  • The Commonwealth Superannuation Scheme (CSS);
  • The Public Sector Superannuation Scheme (PSS);
  • The Public Sector Superannuation Accumulation Plan (PSSap); and
  • Other.

As the CSS and PSS closed to new members in 1990 and 2005 respectively, there were no APS employees in the CSS under 40 years of age, and no employees under 25 years of age in the PSS.

There were 64,534 APS employees, or 46.4% of the APS workforce, in the PSS and 59,877 employees, or 43.1% of the workforce, in the PSSap. There has been a slight reduction since last year in the proportion of employees in the CSS and PSS with a corresponding increase in proportion of employees in the PSSap.

Figure 3.3 provides information on the proportional distribution of superannuation scheme membership by classification. As a general trend, the PSSap membership decreases as the classification increases, reflecting this as the default fund in the APS since 2005. Conversely, the proportion of employees in the CSS are higher at higher classifications, reflecting employees who have been in the service for longer.

Only 3.6% of employees were members of the CSS, down from 4.2% in 2014 with approximately 36.1% of them aged 55 years or over. These members represent a notable proportion of the SES workforce: 17.1% at the SES 1 level, 29.9% at the SES 2 level and 35.4% of the SES 3 level.

A high employer superannuation contribution (compared to base salary) can be the result of several things: a higher salary for superannuation purposes; an employee performing an eligible period of higher duties when their superannuation was calculated; and annualising superannuation paid fortnightly, based on ordinary time earnings for a fortnight with a large amount of shift work or overtime. Employer superannuation contributions are shown in Tables 3.6 and 3.7.

Figure 3.3: Employer superannuation contributions by classification

Source: Table 3.4

Table 3.4: Employees by classification and superannuation fund
Classification CSS PSS PSSap Other
n % n % n % n %
Graduate 1 0.1 4 0.4 983 84.8 171 14.8
APS 1 23 2.9 167 20.8 492 61.2 122 15.2
APS 2 80 2.5 1,158 35.5 1,726 52.9 301 9.2
APS 3 258 1.7 5,252 33.9 8,754 56.5 1,229 7.9
APS 4 472 1.6 12,285 42.1 14,651 50.2 1,773 6.1
APS 5 486 2.5 8,258 41.6 9,592 48.4 1,499 7.6
APS 6 970 3.2 13,978 45.6 13,540 44.1 2,185 7.1
EL 1 1,183 4.8 14,404 58.1 7,754 31.3 1,441 5.8
EL 2 1,013 8.9 7,443 65.7 2,128 18.8 751 6.6
SES 1 324 17.1 1,271 67.0 186 9.8 116 6.1
SES 2 158 29.9 269 51.0 58 11.0 43 8.1
SES 3 40 35.4 45 39.8 13 11.5 15 13.3
Total 5,008 3.6 64,534 46.4 59,877 43.1 9,646 6.9
Table 3.5: Employees by superannuation fund and age group
Classification CSS PSS PSSap Other
n % n % n % n %
Under 20 . . . . 152 95.0 8 5.0
20-24 . . . . 2,710 87.3 395 12.7
25-29 . . 86 0.7 10,562 87.1 1,482 12.2
30-34 . . 2,578 14.1 14,080 77.1 1,604 8.8
35-39 . . 8,624 44.9 9,286 48.4 1,285 6.7
40-44 49 0.2 12,380 59.9 7,151 34.6 1,103 5.3
45-49 865 4.3 12,706 63.3 5,541 27.6 960 4.8
50-54 2,286 10.8 13,252 62.3 4,690 22.1 1,036 4.9
55-59 1,060 7.1 9,631 64.6 3,267 21.9 955 6.4
60 and over 748 8.1 5,277 56.9 2,438 26.3 818 8.8
Total 5,008 3.6 64,534 46.4 59,877 43.1 9,646 6.9
Table 3.6: Employer superannuation contribution as a proportion of Base Salary by classification
Classification Employees P5 Q1 Median Q3 P95 Average
2014 n 2015 n 2014 % 2015 % 2014 % 2015 % 2014 % 2015 % 2014 % 2015 % 2014 % 2015 % 2014 % 2015 %
Graduate 1,160 1,159 13.8 13.5 15.4 15.4 15.4 15.4 15.6 15.6 16.3 19.2 15.4 15.6
APS 1 918 804 14.7 15.4 15.4 15.4 15.4 15.6 18.7 19.5 22.9 23.5 17.1 17.4
APS 2 3,200 3,264 15.1 15.4 15.4 15.4 16.3 15.6 18.3 18.9 21.8 22.2 17.2 17.1
APS 3 15,871 15,492 15.1 15.4 15.4 15.4 16.3 16.1 19.2 19.9 25.3 28.7 17.9 18.4
APS 4 28,323 29,181 15.1 15.4 15.4 15.4 16.6 16.3 19.1 19.5 22.0 22.3 17.5 17.6
APS 5 19,964 19,835 15.0 15.0 15.4 15.4 16.5 15.8 19.1 19.5 23.6 24.5 17.6 17.8
APS 6 30,447 30,670 14.8 14.9 15.4 15.4 17.3 15.7 19.1 19.5 22.3 23.3 17.5 17.6
EL 1 25,402 24,778 15.1 15.0 15.4 15.4 17.4 18.0 19.0 19.6 21.9 22.5 17.7 17.8
EL 2 11,706 11,328 15.1 15.1 16.0 15.4 17.2 17.9 19.0 19.5 22.2 22.3 17.7 18.0
SES 1 1,794 1,896 15.3 15.0 17.0 16.2 18.4 18.3 20.0 19.9 23.5 23.6 18.5 18.5
SES 2 503 528 15.3 14.7 16.3 15.6 18.4 17.9 20.3 20.1 24.2 23.8 18.6 18.4
SES 3 109 113 14.9 12.3 15.9 15.4 18.4 17.8 20.5 19.5 23.9 23.3 18.4 17.6
Table 3.7: Employer superannuation contribution by classification
Classification Employees n P5 $ Q1 $ Median $ Q3 $ P95 $ Average $
Graduate 1,159 8,336 9,016 9,364 9,738 10,655 9,414
APS 1 804 6,028 6,971 7,474 9,090 11,139 8,001
APS 2 3,265 7,431 7,997 8,485 10,247 12,309 9,156
APS 3 15,493 8,545 9,473 9,908 12,186 17,806 11,165
APS 4 29,181 9,624 10,632 11,136 13,502 15,388 12,027
APS 5 19,835 10,635 11,447 11,898 14,666 18,199 13,213
APS 6 30,673 11,898 13,374 14,148 17,231 20,681 15,305
EL 1 24,782 15,340 16,691 19,317 20,984 24,639 19,253
EL 2 11,335 19,161 20,733 24,389 26,547 31,427 24,418
SES 1 1,897 25,591 30,045 33,714 37,431 43,840 34,135
SES 2 528 32,901 37,596 42,660 48,264 56,602 43,608
SES 3 113 35,000 49,689 57,040 62,101 70,200 55,763