3% pay rise for grounds staff says GMA

Following research commissioned by the Grounds Management Association (GMA), conducted by Myriad Research*, a 3% pay rise for grounds staff  in national minimum salary bands for all levels of grounds staff is being recommended this year by the not-for-profit membership organisation.

In addition, the GMA suggests that the ‘bonus’ amounts paid in recognition of those with GMA qualifications should increase to £675 per band – a rise of 3.8% – extending from £675 for Level 1 accreditation up to £4,050 for Level 6.

The 3% pay rise for grounds staff outlined in the GMA’s 2022 National Salary Framework report are made against a backdrop of forecast growth in the economy (of 6.5% in 2021 and 6% in 2022), as well as projected increases in both CPI (Consumer Price Inflation) and RPI (Retail Price Index) inflation.

The GMA’s recommended national basic salary bands, with effect from 1 January 2022, relate to the minimum basic salary and are not ‘salary ranges’. There is no maximum salary specified for grounds staff as experienced staff in some sectors (notably professional sports) would be expected to earn well above the average in other sectors.

If this is the case, these recommendations can be used purely as a recommendation for annual uplift. Bonuses, overtime, and subsistence payments have not been included and are therefore additional. Regional pay variations have been considered, with higher cost areas of the country expected to make salary awards at the upper levels of the appropriate band.

To accompany the recommended salary bands, the GMA publishes sample job descriptions that reflect the typical job responsibilities and experience required for each level within the industry career hierarchy. The GMA recommends that competent and effective job performers whose job content relates closely to the ‘standard’ position description should be paid at the mid-point and upper pay levels of the bands.

Following the GMA’s research, the recommended salary bands for 2022 are:

Job Level National Basic Salary Bands Per Annum (lower end) National Basic Salary Bands Per Annum (upper end)
Grounds Manager £38,230 £59,224
Head Groundsperson £32,605 £44,750
Deputy Head Groundsperson / Sole Charge £26,675 £34,045
Groundsperson (Skilled) £24,946 £31,823
Groundsperson £19,986 £25,496
Junior Groundsperson (aged 17) £16,993 N/A
Junior Groundsperson (aged 16) £14,112 N/A

In addition to the updated salary bands, it is recommended that all grounds staff receive financial recognition within the salary scale for successful completion of a relevant professional qualification, such as those offered through GMA learning. The total amount received should be directly linked to the highest level of qualification attained, with the highest amount, awarded for those who hold a GMA Level 6 qualification, being an additional £4,050 to the individual’s existing salary.

Geoff Webb, CEO of the GMA says:
“The GMA is working to elevate the sector and its perception so that, in turn, grounds staff get increased recognition and reward – such as salaries that meet the level of skill or demand.

“With a stagnant economy riding the pressures of COVID-19, many industries are facing economic challenges, but our National Salary Framework is imperative to shaping the future of grounds management.

“But we can’t do this alone. We must all work together to educate those outside of our sector to help understand it’s value. You can visit our website to find out more about the practical ways this salary framework can support your role or recruitment.”

GMA members can access the full report via their online member portal at: https://thegma.org.uk/user
The GMA’s Training Needs Analysis service is designed to support managers and grounds staff in mapping out a training and education journey. To find out more, visit: https://thegma.org.uk/learning/training-needs-analysis

For training options at the GMA visit: https://thegma.org.uk/learning
Find out how to become a GMA member at: https://thegma.org.uk/membership

*The research was carried out independently by Myriad Research (www.myriadresearch.co.uk) using several data sources for analysis.

Scroll to Top