I recently changed jobs and I'm on the same salary I was on before, yet I am actually getting paid £200 less than I was at the old place.

What are the possible reasons for this?


  • 1
    Do you have employee contributions to anything? I don't know British systems, but in the US it wouldn't be uncommon for the employee to contribute to retirement savings and health insurance and those would be withheld from the paycheck. – Eric Renouf Jan 12 '16 at 13:06
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    Sounds like it would be more appropriate for Personal Finance & Money but you should just need to look at your payslips to work out where the difference is coming from. – Philip Kendall Jan 12 '16 at 13:07
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    Why have you not asked your HR department or Supervisor? – user45269 Jan 12 '16 at 13:26
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    For the UK, check your tax code on your first payslip, it might be something like M1 (meaning Month 1) which is also known colloquially as 'Emergency Tax' where they made deductions assuming the worst, before getting your actual tax code into the system. If this is reason it will all even itself out over time and you need to do nothing. – Marv Mills Jan 12 '16 at 13:31
  • In case Marv's reason is the correct one, make sure that you fill out your tax return as soon as you receive your P60 in April, and everything that you overpaid will be promptly refunded. – gnasher729 Jan 12 '16 at 20:57

A few things come to mind:

  • An error in the payroll. Ask HR for clarification
  • A misunderstanding of your contract, e.g. you may be working fewer hours than before, but at the same hourly rate. Ask HR for clarification if your contract is not clear
  • Taxation. Sometimes when moving from one job to another, you may be charged emergency tax, or again an error could have been made. Ask HR for clarification, as they are the agents who pay tax from your salary on your behalf
  • Difference in benefits, e.g. being auto-enrolled into a pension scheme. Ask HR for clarification
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  • Thanks. I hate bringing money up cause I always seem to say something wrong and come across as a money-grabbing scumbag! :P – Jay Jan 12 '16 at 13:08
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    No need to feel nervous. You have a contract to be paid for your services. You have a question about that contract, for which HR is the best placed to answer that. You're not in a re-negotiation, just asking for clarification – user27483 Jan 12 '16 at 13:11
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    One more possible point is a pro-rated first paycheck. – Myles Jan 12 '16 at 13:20
  • Turned out that it was the fact they didn't input my P45 tax information in time so I was on an emergency tax code. Thanks! – Jay Jan 14 '16 at 11:13

One reason not covered by the previous answer is that you may have gone from being paid semi-monthly to bi-weekly. So for the same salary, lets go with £50,000:

semi-monthly: 50,000 / 24 payments (2 payments per month) = £2083.33

bi-weekly: 50,000 / 26 payments (52 weeks in a year / 2 ) = £1923.07

Same salary, but per paycheck semi-monthly pays £160.26 more. This difference gets bigger with a higher salary. One bonus of bi-weekly is that if you budget assuming 2 (smaller) paychecks each month, the 2 months you get 3, you can have extra spending money.

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  • 1
    +1 Hadn't thought of the pay period. This reiterates why it's important for the OP to clarify with HR, payroll or their manager – user27483 Jan 12 '16 at 13:36
  • Its also worth seeing if you now have a Workplace Pension that is different to the one at your previous place. – Moo Jan 12 '16 at 13:41
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    In France, people get paid on 12 or 13 months, depending on the shop. Makes quite a difference too. Same philosophy. – gazzz0x2z Jan 12 '16 at 14:00
  • bi weekly payments are almost unheard of in the UK its weekly or monthly – Pepone Jan 12 '16 at 21:04

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