One of the UK’s top 5 banks, Barclays, has announced plans to cut over 1500 jobs across the firm. The job losses will occur in a number of branches around the UK, and the company has plans to offer a voluntary redundancy scheme to staff.
Barclays blames the job losses on improvements in technology; not as many staff are needed in branch as people are using mobile internet banking. The business currently employs over 30,000 staff and has over 1500 branches across the country.
Fears are for the level of customer service the company will be able to offer if they reduce the number of staff in their branches. How will staff build a good rapport with their customers if they no longer see them face to face, or aren’t able to offer their full attention when they do come into the branch? The union are in talks with Barclays to see what alternative actions are possible, and how to reduce the job losses to as few as possible.
There is no one specific department that will suffer as a result of the job cuts. Various positions will be affected across the whole of the branch. It is expected that the number of jobs set to be axed equates to one job loss per branch. Over 500 jobs will be lost in the north of the country, and a smaller number of branches will be closed and moved into a nearby supermarket.
The job cuts will take place in 2014; Barclays employees will have an uncertain christmas ahead of them. It will be interesting to see what customers make of the changes in branch. A reduction in staff will put more pressure on the remaining employees to deliver the expected level of customer service that is currently on offer.