Another 2,100 jobs to go at Lloyds

Author: Press Association

Staff were told that the cuts will affect the firm’s commercial and group
operations, hitting offices across the country.

The Unite union said it was “astonished” at the new job losses, saying “real
questions” now had to be asked about how far the bank can be allowed to go
in its “systematic” slashing of staff.

Rob MacGregor, Unite’s national officer, said: “This loss of over 2,000 jobs
marks the largest single job loss announcement since the formation of Lloyds
Banking Group in January.

“Morale is now truly low as employees across Lloyds are in a permanent state
of anxiety as they see their employer announce hundreds of job losses every
week.

“This Labour Government cannot afford to turn the other way as bank workers
across the country are losing their jobs. This horrendous news brings the
total of job losses since January in LBG to over 7,000.

“The thousands of staff in the commercial and group operations areas who are
hit by this announcement will be seeking a commitment from the bank that
there will be no compulsory redundancies.

“Unite welcomes the assurance given to the union that LBG will not offshore
any further roles in these business areas. However, we have called for an
urgent review of all the Lloyds work being done offshore in order to access
how this could be done in the UK in order to protect jobs.”

Ged Nichols, general secretary of Accord, the union representing the largest
number of former HBOS employees now working in the new Lloyds Banking Group,
described the announcement as “very significant”, adding: “The cumulative
job loss total, and the almost weekly announcements, are a major worry for
everybody employed in the bank.

“A team from Accord is meeting with the LBG today to seek reassurance that the
restructuring that is taking place is genuinely aimed at creating a bank fit
for the future rather than just cutting short-term costs.”

Accord said it welcomed an announcement of new roles being created and an
assurance that jobs would be retained in this country rather than offshored.

“We remain concerned, however, about the net further loss of employment
opportunities within the bank, particularly in the current difficult
economic and employment climate.

“Accord will fully support its members right through the current situation and
we will do all that we can to avoid compulsory redundancies from this and
other initiatives.”

Lloyds said the changes followed “careful and detailed reviews” of the group
operations and wholesale divisions, which will bring together a number of
functions across Lloyds TSB and HBOS areas.

Operational functions including payment and business services and banking are
combining, while the wholesale division is bringing together its Lloyds TSB
and Bank of Scotland businesses in England and Wales.

Up to 2,100 jobs will be affected over the next three years, although Lloyds
said 350 new roles will be created in cuts wholesale division.

The bank said it expected 700 of the job cuts to be achieved through natural
attrition and the release of contract and agency staff.

It also announced that it would not be offshoring any permanent operational
roles, keeping jobs in the UK wherever possible.

Mark Fisher, director, group operations, Lloyds Banking Group, said: “By
bringing the businesses together, we will be better placed for the future.
Regrettably, however, some of our colleagues will be affected by our plans.

“We understand that this difficult news will be unsettling and we will be
working closely with those colleagues affected.”

Lloyds said compulsory redundancies would be a “last resort”, adding that
measures had been put in place to help staff through this “uncertain time”.

Around 700 jobs will be lost in group operations across a number of areas,
including Scotland, the Midlands and West Yorkshire.

There will be 170 fewer “relationship manager” roles, while five commercial
service centres will close this year in Barnstaple, Exeter, Lincoln,
Plymouth and Yeovil.

Staff were also told that a further 34 commercial service centres were under
review, with completion of this process due by the end of 2011. Two
telephony units will also close in Chester and Speke, affecting 84 jobs.

Among the jobs created will be 90 in Edinburgh and Birmingham.

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