I work for a Construction Company. One of the managers has recently left the company and my line manager offered the job to me. Previously when he was off, the workload was covered almost entirely by myself in addition to my current role and I struggled to perform either role to a standard that I consider acceptable.
Head office intervened to force the job to be advertised internally and externally. During the interview process, my line manager kept assuring me that the job would be mine (despite me informing him that he shouldn't).
He then asked if I would accept the job for less wages than the previous employee (citing pressure from head office), which I declined as I am more qualified than the previous employee despite being less experienced.
He then told me and the office that the job was mine (but wouldn't actually tell me the wage that went with it). His line manager then said that they wanted a business case for paying me the going rate for the role, and it became apparent to me that they weren't aware that I had been informed that the job was mine.
We provided head office with a list of my qualifications, experience and the jobs that I do in my current role and how they would contribute to me performing the new role. They have now responded by offering me a job that combines both my current role and the new role for less money than the previous employee was on. I was told that if I didn't accept the role, they would not replace the manager, implying that the work would still be mine to do.
This feels like a form of blackmail and I am unsure of what my next steps should be. I am potentially going to be applying for a mortgage soon so am not in a position to be moving jobs.
The only two options I can see are: 1) Work to rule - do my current job and refuse to do anything not covered by the job role 2) Accept that my work load has doubled without remuneration
Are there any options that I am missing (I have considered going to HR as I feel the attempts to cut my pay may be gender related but I have no proof of this)