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Chapter 2: Remuneration components

The report focuses on key remuneration components across the APS. These components are Base Salary, Total Remuneration Package, Total Reward and allowances.

Base Salary:

Incorporates only the Base Salary paid to employees, including salary sacrificed amounts.

Total Remuneration Package:

Incorporates Base Salary plus benefits which include employer superannuation contribution, motor vehicle cost/Executive Vehicle Scheme or cash in lieu of motor vehicle, motor vehicle parking, personal benefits and other supplementary payments.

Total Reward:

Incorporates Total Remuneration Package plus bonuses for performance, retention, productivity, sign-on and group or whole of agency performance.


Incorporates a range of payments, not covered within Total Reward, for specific working conditions, qualifications and work related expenses.

Movement in remuneration components

Remuneration movements are affected by a number of factors such as general wage increases, progressions within salary increments, promotions, engagements and agency transfers.The population of each classification also affects the impact of overall percentage changes.

Figure 2.1 shows the annual proportional change in weighted median Base Salary for non-SES and SES employees over the last five years. This is comprised of the median movements for each classification, weighted to account for employee numbers at each classification. It shows movement in non-SES salaries are beginning to increase after a period of lower wages growth between 2014 and 2016. In 2017, the annual increase in Base Salary was 2.6% for SES and 2.5% for non-SES employees. 

Figure 2.1: Percentage change in weighted median Base Salary, 2013–2017

Figure 2.2 shows the movement in median remuneration between 2016 and 2017 for Base Salary, Total Remuneration Package (TRP) and Total Reward (TR). There have been increases across all remuneration components and all classification groups of around 1–3%. The largest relative increases were in Base Salary for most classifications.

Figure 2.2: Percentage change in median remuneration components, 2016–2017