As chart figure 3.9 shows, increases in NJC full-time female earnings have outstripped male fulltimers in recent years, although both groups have improved against inflation. If we take full-time male earnings separately (see figure 3.10), we can see that the NJC has had increases ahead of the whole economy for much of the period but recently has fallen behind. In the case of full-time females, the NJC group increases have fallen behind whole economy earnings for some years (see figure 3.11). Earnings increases for NJC female part-timers have more or less tracked whole economy movements (see figure 3.12).
The earnings data shown above is based on published NES data. This reflects the changing composition of the sample (i.e. the population changes over time) and hence does not compare the same population each year. To overcome this problem we commissioned an analysis of the NES ‘panel’ data by Scotecon at Stirling University. This research links together NES employee records over time so that we have a matched sample in other words it looks at the same population over time.
This provides a more rigorous method of comparison than simply using the raw published data. It also partly overcomes the problem of data before the creation of the single status agreement in 1997. The analysis allows us to compare NJC earnings movements and distribution with those for other public sector bargaining groups on a similar basis. It should be stressed, however, Building and Pest Inspections Perth that the same health warnings apply to this dataset as to the earlier datasets in that the panel data still under-represent part-time and lower paid workers. These data are also only available up to April 2001 and exclude the April 2002 NJC staged award.
The panel data analysis shows that the average weekly earnings of those covered by the NJC Agreement are below the national average for full-time men and women but the median is about the same. The lower position of NJC average earnings largely reflects the fact that the earnings distribution in local government is narrower than in the economy as a whole and there are no very. highly paid employees within the NJC data as there are in the whole economy data (Chief Executives and Chief Officers are covered by separate agreements in local government).