When the Bank announced the results of its Group Strategic Plan 2018 – 2020 a few months ago it refused point blank to say whether its 3-year strategy would result in more redundancies and more branch closures. At the time we said:
”We are being asked to believe that the Bank can say with a fair degree of certainty that it can deliver profits by 2020 that are 25% higher than market expectations but it can’t say how many staff it will have left at the end of the same period. The Bank knows what these numbers are but has chosen not to publish them, unlike for Group Strategic Reviews 1 and 2, and it may be because they are so significant its scared of the political backlash.”
Today the Bank announced a further round of job cuts across the Group with a net loss of 305 jobs, together with 49 branch closures. It will have known about those job cuts and branch closures in February but chose not to say anything. What will be worrying for staff is that we are only 4 months into Group Strategic Review 3 and we have already seen thousands of jobs disappear.
There will also be a reorganisation of the management structure across all Community Banks. The Group is looking to create management pools in Lloyds Bank, Bank of Scotland and Halifax Community Banks. Whilst all branches in those pools will have access to branch management support not all branches will have a dedicated, on-site Branch Manager. The result of this restructuring, which we said would happen last year, will be the loss of 376 roles mainly Branch Manager and Assistant Branch Manager roles. However, to manage the new structure the Bank is creating a new Senior Manager role covering between 1-5 branches. The Bank is also investing in the number of front line service roles, 376 in total, to reflect the increasing demand from customers for better service.
PBAs, CSAs and the Mortgage population will not be directly affected by the changes announced today although some of them will see a change in line management.
The Bank is also introducing a new grading model which we will discuss in a forthcoming Newsletter.
Closure of Solent
The Bank has also announced the closure of the Solent Contact Centre. The Centre will stop serving customers from the end of July and the Group will leave the site in June 2019.
The Group has said that suitable roles in Group Customer Services, will be available for all Connect customer facing colleagues. Staff in Solent will be able to continue to work in the Contact Centre until the Bank leaves the building next year. Equally, that gives time for the Group to find alternative roles for members working in Solent.
For those members looking to apply for one of the new roles, the Bank is using a simplified model which does not involve completing long, complicated preference forms. Members who would like to discuss their options should contact the Union’s Bedford Office.
Members with any questions on the latest round of job losses should contact the Union’s Advice Team on 01234 262868 (Option 1).