12 June 2007
1. Occupation Specific Dispensation means revised salary structures that are
unique to each identified occupation in the public service.
2. These unique salary structures will:
* be centrally determined through grading structures and broad job
* develop career pathing opportunities for public servants based on
competencies, experience and performance
* provide for pay progression within the salary level
* consolidate certain benefits and allowances into the salaries of
3. The interval between notches in the revised remuneration structures will
provide for significant increments between notches. The frequency of the pay
progression within scope of the scales will be determined for each occupational
category as it will be informed by the needs of the specific occupation. Such
progression within scales will be subject to certain prescribed levels of
4. The salaries of certain occupational categories will, where applicable,
be aligned to the market.
5. The implementation of the OSD will not be a general increase for all
employees in these occupational categories. OSDs will put in place a proper
career pathing model for all occupational categories. Such a career pathing
model is not an automatic salary increase, but it is a forward looking plan to
systematically increase salaries after pre-determined periods based on specific
criteria such as performance, qualification, scope of work, experience,
6. The remuneration structure will provide for longer salary bands and
substantial overlaps between salary levels to facilitate adequate salary
progression to employees who choose to remain in the production levels instead
of aspiring to move into the supervisory or specialist posts.
7. OSDs provide for dual career paths in terms of which professionals and
specialists can progress to levels where they earn salaries that are equal to
or higher than that of managers without moving into management or supervisory
posts. In this regard, the specialist career path will accommodate the
uniqueness of different professional or specialist jobs by acknowledging
existing 'job families' in the specialist disciplines. Specialist career paths
and related remuneration structures will be developed for all the identified
Why is government implementing the new occupation specific dispensation?
8. To improve government's ability to attract and retain skilled employees,
through improved remuneration. Currently, employees in the public service are
remunerated by a single salary structure. This does not adequately address the
diverse needs of occupational categories in the public service.
9. The revised salary structures will result in public servants receiving
substantially higher salary increases, through putting in place proper career
pathing models for public servants, recognising seniority and rewarding
Examples of the OSD (changes that public servants will see)
Currently, the starting salary of a professional nurse is approximately R79
000 per annum, excluding benefits. Government is proposing that the starting
salary of a nurse with a four-year qualification after completing one-year
community service, be increased to R90 000. Government is further proposing
that a nurse with excellent performance and has completed five-years of service
is should increase by 22%. This increase is over and above the annual general
For the teachers, government is proposing that starting salary of a teacher
with qualifications M+4, be increased from R99 540 to R105 741, head of
department from R123 624 to R130 047 and those of deputy principal to increase
from R147 618 to R155 283. Government is also proposing that the maximum salary
for a principal be increased to R344 931.
However, all these are proposals and subject to collective bargaining
Implications of the new salary grading system:
10. The number of salary notches will be reduced and the increments between
notches will be different from the standardised key salary scale.
11. New salary scales will be introduced by the OSDs which will allow for
overlaps between salary ranges.
12. Upward career pathing or upward mobility of employees is improved.
13. An employee who remains within the production level of the occupation
throughout his or her career will by means of pay and grade progression
receives substantial increases in salary.
14. Translation measures will be communicated to departments or provincial
administrations to provide comprehensive guidelines on the changes effected in
terms of the new dispensation.
15. Employees will be translated to the appropriate salary ranges attached to
the posts subject thereto that they meet the criteria in terms of the
appointment and the progression requirements of the OSDs.
Implementation of OSDs
16. These dispensations will be implemented over the next five years
commencing Sunday, 1 July 2007, for all the categories of nurses and identified
legal professionals in the Justice cluster.
17. School based educators and principals are targeted for Tuesday, 1 January
2008. The rest of the health professionals will be implemented with effect from
1 April 2008. Correctional services officials for Tuesday, 1 July 2008.
18. Office based educators are targeted for Tuesday, 1 January 2009 and other
professions such as engineers, architects etc.
Issued by: Department of Public Services and Administration
12 June 2007