• Salary Progression
  • Probation
  • Superannuation
  • Retirement Age

Pay & Grading

The Medical Research Council (MRC) has its own pay and grading system. There are 7 bands with jobs being allocated to bands on the basis of job weight. For scientific staff, scientific merit is also a factor in the determination of banding. Salary progression within each band will be by progress along annual performance related pay steps leading to the maximum specified pay point for the band.

Band Minimum Band Specified Pay Point
Band 7: £14,195 to £15,619
Band 6: £16,388 to £19,100
Band 5: £21,303 to £24,960
Band 4: £26,545 to £32,003
Band 3: £36,294 to £42,662
Band 2: £48,176 to £59,522
Band 1: £70,700 to No Maximum

Postdoctoral Scientists are typically appointed to band 4. More senior individuals can be considered for immediate appointment at band 3. For Research Assistants, the level of initial appointment [band 5 or 4] is dependant upon job weight. For administrative staff, the agreed banding for the post determines the level at which individuals are appointed.

Starting salary on appointment is determined on the basis of skills and relevant experience; with due regard being paid to internal relativities.


A Location Allowance of £3,402 per annum is paid to all staff working at the Clinical Sciences Centre (CSC).

In addition to the above, a Central London Supplement of £1,279 per annum is paid to all staff working at the CSC. This supplement is non-consolidated and non-pensionable and is paid monthly.

A Clinical Recruitment and Retention Allowance is payable to eligible clinical staff to maintain parity with NHS scales (under review).

Salary Progression

Pay is reviewed once a year on 1st April. A cost of living increase is awarded to all staff regardless of length of service.

There is also an annual Additional Salary Progression Exercise, which can result in a further increase in pay for selected staff based on performance. This is also effective from 1st April.

The annual pay award is negotiated centrally with the MRC’s recognised Trade Unions:

  • Association of University Teachers (AUT)
  • Association of First Division Civil Servants (FDA)
  • British Medical Association (BMA)
  • Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS)
  • Unite (formerly AMICUS)


All appointments have a probationary period of six months, during which progress [performance and attendance] is regularly assessed with a view to confirming the balance of the appointment [if fixed term] or giving an established appointment [if permanent].


The MRC has its own pension scheme [MRCPS], which all staff may apply to join. MRCPS is a ‘final salary’ scheme, and pension benefits are based on 1/80th of final pensionable salary (usually that earned in the year leading up to retirement) for each year of reckonable service. The contribution rate is 6.5% of salary.

Staff may not maintain membership of other occupational schemes on appointment to the MRC. However, they can transfer contributions from other schemes [e.g. USS, NHSSS] into MRCPS.
Retirement Age

The retirement age for all staff is 65 years.


Last updated 27/09/2013