Unions at the BBC are advising their members to accept the corporation’s annual pay offer in postal ballots.
The offer, due to be paid from 1 August, was made by management on June 30, after the unions – Bectu, NUJ and Amicus – rejected an earlier proposal for a 3.2% rise.
Members are now being balloted on a revised offer of 3.5% which will be paid to staff in the BBC itself, and BBC Broadcast, a subsidiary which could be sold off this summer.
Pay talks started later than usual at the BBC this year due to and industrial action over plans for job cuts and privatisation at the corporation. A union ballot on concessions is due to close today.
The BBC has refused to reveal whether senior executives had received generous bonuses once more, claiming that the information was confidential until publication of its Annual Report, expected in mid-July.
However, detailed cost figures for a number of controversial projects were given in response to union questions, and it emerged that the Ashridge training programme for managers had already cost £11.5m.
Unions compared this unfavourably to the £43.8m that management said would be added to the BBC’s wage bill by the opening offer of 3.2%.
The ballot on pay will close on 11 July.