Diagnosis of the evolution of salaries in the federal public service, from 1998 to 2022, identified that, in the absence of technical criteria and performance evaluation, the most traditional activities within the Executive elite achieved gains of up to 60% above inflation, worsening distortions in the functional structure. On average, the increase is 40% above inflation.
At the opposite extreme, losses were accumulated in positions of trust, known as DAS (superior management and advisory) at levels 4 and 6. The retraction was in the range of 30%.
Entitled “Proposals for Modernization of the Federal Government’s Career System”, the study was commissioned by the Movimento Pessoas à Frente, within the proposal of providing the State with information on how earnings from different careers evolve when there are no technical criteria for readjustments, as occurs today in Brazil.
There are 117 careers and 43 work groups, with a large number of salary tables organized into different patterns.
The research was based on the tables adopted by the Union in 1998, reconstructing the history of appreciation of the starting and final salaries of careers and commissioned positions that prevailed until 2022. The values were adjusted to April 2023.
“A surprise was to see that everyone had significant salary appreciation, even considering the last five years, which includes the government period [Jair] Bolsonaro, in which there was a freeze on salaries and devaluation due to inflation”, says economist Felipe Drumond, who coordinated the diagnosis.
“But, as the Brazilian government does not have a technical method to determine how much civil servants should earn, nor a methodology for classifying positions, the study also shows that the biggest readjustments and gains were for categories capable of applying more pressure.”
Careers in the management group, for example, which work in planning and operations in power-sensitive areas, are the most privileged. They include specialists in public policy and government management, budget, planning and National Treasury analysts.
In the study, they lead the earnings ranking. These are the careers that accumulated an increase of 60.1% in real terms. They managed to raise the ceiling from R$17,467 to R$28,066, consolidating themselves among the best paid.
This salary is second only to that of a tax auditor at the Federal Revenue, which had an increase of 45.4%, taking the ceiling from R$21,378 to R$31,074.
Another highlight is the gain of the Union lawyer. Considering only the salary increase, the increase was 19.6%, and the ceiling went from R$23,401 to R$27,998.
However, the group gained authorization to receive succumbence, a fee paid to the lawyer for those who lost the lawsuit, which used to be a right in the private sector, not in the public. According to the study, with this additional benefit, earnings as a whole increased by 38.2% in the period.
Carlos Ari Sundfeld, professor at FGV Direito SP and co-author of the survey “A Proposal for State HR Reform”, explains that the bargaining strategy for salary increases is not unified and varies according to the position of each category in the salary spectrum. power.
“The proximity to the State’s elite means that the management group’s careers achieve the best results”, says Sundfeld.
“The relationship with Federal Revenue professionals has a different nature. The auditor has the key to the safe. As Brazil has been in a constant fiscal crisis for 40 years, this group, which guarantees revenue, has been gaining ground. The auditor is empowered in all levels — federal, state and even municipal.”
In the case of the Union lawyer, explains Sundfeld, the gains came in line with those achieved by legal professionals who are part of the Judiciary, Public Ministry and external control bodies.
“These careers gained prominence after the 1988 Constitution. The State was cornered. In this environment, there is no way to deny increasing remuneration to lawyers who will defend the Union’s causes”, he says.
In Drumond’s assessment, the increase of this elite even reverberated in other segments of the Executive that support State activities, but without the same result.
An example of this is in careers under the umbrella of the PCC/PGCP (Position Classification Plan/General Position Plan of the Executive Branch). Popularly called “carreirão” they are extremely fragmented, which makes it difficult to mobilize for more gains.
The study evaluated administrative analysts with higher education in this segment. The increase was 48.2% above inflation, but salaries remained lower. In 1998, this group had an initial income of R$2,881 and a final income of R$6,176. In 2022, the values were, respectively, R$5,885 and R$9,152.
The study considered 75% of higher-level careers already existing in 1998 in direct administration. In 2022, they corresponded to less than 30%, given that between 2000 and 2010 new positions were created.
The study also identifies that, in this process, mainly fundamental level positions were eliminated and there was greater expansion in indirect administration.
The new higher education careers, explains the study coordinator, have intermediate salaries between the highest salary group and those of the PCC/PGPE.
The survey did not include the diplomat and the chancery officer because their remuneration outside Brazil is calculated differently.
In Drumond’s assessment, more than the salary disparities show, the study’s great contribution is to show the harmful effect of the lack of criteria for career progression, and draws parallels to illustrate.
“The management group’s careers were designed to occupy commissioned positions, so DAS should be attractive, but that’s not what we see”, he says.
“The initial value in the management group is currently R$19,685, with rapid progression to the ceiling, while DAS 6, which had the highest value in 1998, fell to R$17,376.”
DAS is not a career. The gain varies according to the public policy of the government at the time. DASs 4 and 6 accumulate losses of -38.2% and -36.1%, respectively.
DAS 6 remunerates the executive secretary, the number two in the ministries, who assumes numerous responsibilities and replaces the holder of the portfolio.
“A beginner in the management group’s career, who does not assume complex functions, earns more than a secretary. He also earns much more than an experienced employee of the PCC group who is in a management position.”
The agricultural inspector, who guarantees the health status of food working in the interior of the country, for example, had an adjustment of 8.5%. The ceiling went from R$19,258 to R$20,895.
The study does not go into its merits, but experts say that the anarchy in the adjustments in the Executive elite contributes to reinforcing income inequalities in Brazil.
From 1998 to 2022, the minimum wage increased by 105.8% above inflation, following the PT’s appreciation policy. It went from R$130 to R$1,212. This year, it is R$1,412.
The progress is much higher than that achieved by the Executive elite, but, as the difference in values is immense, it barely affected the disparity. In 1998, it was equivalent to 2.75% of the tax auditor’s salary cap. In 2022, at 4%.
The new wave of competitions underway in the federal government will maintain the disorderly dynamics for new employees.
The People Front Movement brings together entities such as the Humanize Institute, República.org and the Lemann Foundation, as well as experts in the field, parliamentarians, unions and NGOs with plural political, social and economic views.
Its representatives argue that the reform of the career system is a central point for the modernization of public administration.
When contacted to comment on the results, the Ministry of Management and Innovation did not comment.