Managers’ pay is now under continual scrutiny. This week’s contribution comes from consultancy Hay Group, which has given HSJ an analysis of salary data which it says shows there is no link between pay rises and performance for foundation trust chief executives.

While it is possible to question the findings - it is easy to argue that the annual health check scores used in the study are an incomplete picture of trust performance, for example - the report highlights the importance of transparency in senior managers’ salaries.

The febrile atmosphere around public sector senior managers - their numbers, performance and pay - means NHS organisations should assume everything about them will soon be public. In particular, every foundation trust board should be able to explain to local people what their senior executives are paid and why that is justified.

That does not mean being apologetic or embarrassed. It does mean applying rational and defensible criteria to remuneration packages and putting forward a convincing case for this use of public money.

Don’t apologise for executive pay – but you must explain it