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Remuneration

2022 UK Spencer Stuart Board Index

2022 Snapshot

 9 %

increase in chair remuneration to £404,915, reversing the drop seen last year

 5 %

increase in average SID remuneration to £117,322

 2 %

the increase in the NED base fee, a rise seen annually for a decade

Board remuneration

Remuneration data for the 2022 UK Spencer Stuart Board Index is based on the most recent annual reports published before our cut-off date of 30 April 2022. All dates in this section refer to the publication year of the relevant Board Index, not the calendar year. 26 companies in our sample pay board fees in currencies other than, or in combination with, sterling (usually US dollars or Euros).

Chairs

After a decrease of 10% in 2021 (£372,980), average total chair remuneration has increased by 9% in 2022 to reach £404,915 — returning to 2019 levels. The highest-paid non-executive chair sits at HSBC Holdings and receives a fee of £1.5m.

Senior independent directors

Most companies with a senior independent director on their board (95%) offer an additional fee for the role that averages £21,653; representing 3% less than in 2021 (£22,246). Additional fees for senior independent directors range from £5,000 at LondonMetric Property to £124,000 at Bridgepoint.

The average total remuneration of senior independent directors is £117,322. This includes the basic non-executive director fee and an additional fee for the role, plus committee memberships where applicable. The rise in this year’s average remuneration represents a 5% increase compared to 2021 (£111,929).

There are six vice chairs in our sample. Of these, two are executive vice chairs (Hikma Pharmaceuticals and Melrose Industries) and two combine the role of vice chair and senior independent director (Experian and Unilever). The average total remuneration of vice chairs is £159,439.

Non-executive directors

The average base fee for a non-executive director has increased by 2% every year for the past decade and reached £72,051 in 2022. Experian pays the highest non-executive director base fee of £142,437 and Wizz Air Holdings pays the lowest base fee of £26,337.

The average total remuneration of the chair is 3.5x that of the senior independent director and 5x that of the non-executive director.

Average chair fee
Average SID total fee
Chair fees by FTSE rank group
Fee Total remuneration
1-10 £793,900 £807,037
11-20 £630,115 £611,599
21-30 £567,771 £515,748
31-40 £530,540 £546,529
41-50 £381,592 £354,912
51-100 £362,442 £440,998
101-150 £303,116 £298,159
SID fees by FTSE rank group
Additional SID fee Total remuneration
1-10 £43,947 £251,509
11-20 £44,773 £208,756
21-30 £24,490 £140,047
31-40 £25,795 £168,106
41-50 £27,834 £103,194
51-100 £17,081 £100,559
101-150 £14,551 £90,414
Non-executive fees by FTSE rank group
Base fee Total remuneration
1-10 £99,970 £155,181
11-20 £96,893 £143,577
21-30 £76,823 £100,396
31-40 £82,353 £107,332
41-50 £70,738 £72,696
51-100 £70,051 £75,902
101-150 £60,849 £64,285

In 2022, companies spent on average £1,216,199 on board directors’ remuneration (a 3% decrease compared with the previous year).

Average non-executive remuneration was £98,460 (excluding the chair).

Committee remuneration

Core committees (audit, remuneration & nomination)

Most companies (146) offer an additional fee to the chair of both audit and remuneration committees. However, additional fees are only available to audit committee members on 64 boards and to remuneration committee members on 62 boards.

Audit committee chairs received £25,035 on average, an increase of 1.3% compared with last year. Audit committee members received an additional fee of £15,395 on average, no significant change from the previous year (+0.2%).

Remuneration committee chair fees rose by 6%, from £22,117 in 2021 to £23,400 in 2022. There was no significant change for remuneration committee members (+0.3%), who received £13,784 on average for the role.

91% of nomination committees are chaired by the chair of the board and 42% are composed of all board members. 68% of boards do not offer any additional fees for nomination committee membership. The 49 boards that do reward nomination committee membership provide an additional fee of £10,275 on average.

Stand-alone risk committees occur in 15% (23) of governance frameworks and provide average additional fees of £43,275 for the chair and £17,319 for members. All companies with stand-alone risk committees are in the financial services industry, with the exception of Flutter Entertainment.

Highest committee chair fees
Audit committee
  1. Barclays: £80,000
  2. HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group and Prudential: £75,000
  3. Standard Chartered: £70,000
  4. Investec and Natwest: £68,000
  5. Aviva: £55,000
Remuneration committee
  1. HSBC and Lloyds Banking Group: £75,000
  2. Barclays and Standard Chartered: £70,000
  3. Natwest: £68,000
  4. Prudential: £65,000
  5. Smurfit Kappa: £52,673
Risk committee
  1. HSBC: £150,000
  2. Barclays: £80,000
  3. Prudential: £75,000
  4. Standard Chartered: £70,000
  5. Natwest: £70,000

47% (70) of boards have established subject-specific committees beyond the core committees (audit, remuneration, and nomination) and risk. There are four technology-related committees in our sample and these offer the highest average additional chair fee of £36,250 among the subject specific committees.  The chair of Glencore’s health, safety, environment and communities committee receives highest fee for chairing a subject-specific committee (£97,957).

Average fees for other committees
Sample size Chair fee Member fee
Health and safety 17 £23,561 £18,670
Corporate social responsibility 16 £20,556 £11,988
Financial 11 £16,318 £11,833
Compliance 12 £27,277 £16,556
Sustainability 19 £22,419 £14,323
Others 11 £13,357 £11,837
ESG 11 £16,896 £7,378
People 5 £9,912 £5,000
Science 4 £27,500 £12,500
Technology 4 £36,250 £30,000

For more on subject-specific committees, see the section on Sustainability & ESG.

See the committee tables for company specific committee remuneration.