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What is minimum wage in the UK?

What is minimum wage in the UK?

With so many changes taking place in the world, you may be wondering what’s happening with minimum wage in the UK. It’s important to know if you’re being paid enough. But your minimum wage depends on different things like your age and whether you’re an apprentice. For example, minimum wage for 18 year olds is different to minimum wage for 16 year olds.

So let’s find out what the minimum wage is for you in 2022.

What is national minimum wage?

The national minimum wage is a payment tariff set by the government. It ensures that all UK employers pay their employees a minimum amount per hour. If employers pay less than the minimum wage, it’s a criminal offence.

National minimum wage Vs national living wage

National minimum wage (NMW) is the base rate per hour that all employees are entitled to. In 2016, the national living wage (NLW) was created. It’s set at a higher rate but only workers aged 23 or over are entitled to national living wage.

National minimum wage rates 2022

Age 16-17: £4.81 per hour

Age 18-20: £6.83 per hour

Age 21-22: £9.18 per hour

Age 23+ (NLW): £9.50 per hour

Minimum wage for apprentices 2022

Minimum wage works differently for apprentices. Your age also affects your minimum wage entitlement when you’re an apprentice.

Age 16-18: £4.81 per hour

Age 19+ and in your first year off apprenticeship: £4.81 per hour

Age 19+ and completed your first year of apprenticeship: full national minimum wage for your age

Who is entitled to minimum wage?

All workers of school leaving age are entitled to minimum wage. It doesn’t matter if you’re a full-time or part-time employee. This includes:

  • Part-time workers
  • Disabled workers
  • International workers
  • Labourers
  • Apprentices (see apprentice rates above)
  • Pregnant women
  • Remote workers
  • Offshore workers
  • Temporary workers

How often does minimum wage increase?

Minimum wage increases every year. The government announces new rates for minimum wage. This increase takes effect from April every year.

Should your wage increase each year?

You should only expect your wage to increase every year if you earn minimum wage. If you’re earning more than minimum wage, your employer decides whether or not to increase your wage. They don’t have to do this, but many employers do increase wages by 3% each year.

How to gain a pay rise

Although pay rises should take place to keep up with inflation, this still doesn’t guarantee you an increase. It’s completely your employer’s decision. So you should always be looking for ways to earn your pay rise.

  • Take on new responsibilities
  • Upskill with courses, qualifications and training
  • Make note of any targets you exceed
  • Discuss what you need to do to earn a pay rise with your line manager
  • Start managing people
  • Work on more complex projects
  • Always be punctual
  • Contribute useful ideas that enhance the company performance
  • Use your annual performance review

Plan ahead

It’s always good to know exactly what wage you’re entitled to before applying for a job. This will help you to manage your finances and cover your living costs. But if your job isn’t paying you enough to cover your costs, you should look at finding another job that pays more.

To plan your next career move, download the SonicJobs app and get applying from your phone!

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