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Lloyds Banking Group has confirmed it plans to axe 865 jobs in a bid to simplify its business.
The lender has said that most of the job cuts will affect its insurance, wealth and retail teams, adding that staff hit by the job cuts would start leaving in November at the earliest.
The job cuts form part of a restructuring plan Lloyds initiated before the pandemic started, but has now revived.
New data released this week shows more than 300,000 jobs were put at risk of redundancy in June and July, which is nearly seven times higher than levels seen last year.
The majority of the roles affected are back-office posts that do not involve interaction with customers.
The company said it will try to redeploy affected staff ‘wherever possible.’
Lloyds will also create 226 new roles, which means the net reduction of staff comes in at 639 jobs, out of a total workforce of around 65,000.
Earlier on Wednesday, Lloyds indicated the job losses included 780 cuts that were announced in February but put on hold because of the pandemic.
It has now clarified the new reductions are on top of the 780 already planned.
Unite union national officer Rob MacGregor said he is worried about the prospects for workers who are being let go in a chaotic jobs market.
Mr MacGregor said: ‘While the creation of 220 jobs is to be welcomed, this will be no comfort to those members of staff who will from today face an uncertain future.’
He asked bosses at Lloyds to ensure everyone who is hit by the cuts is given the option to get a new job at the bank.
‘Unite is adamant that it is totally unacceptable that LBG persists in putting undue pressure on those who remain working for the bank by making hundreds more of their fellow workers redundant on a regular basis,’ Mr MacGregor said.
He added: ‘The pandemic has demonstrated the amazing resilience and flexibility of this workforce.
‘The employer should not focus solely on cutting jobs and costs but instead the bank should invest in a workforce that has only shown loyalty, dedication and hard work through the good times and the bad.’
Shortly after the pandemic hit Lloyds paused plans to simplify its business.
Lloyds said in a statement: ‘This included continuing to pay colleagues in full regardless of their working circumstances and pledging that anyone placed on notice of redundancy would not leave the group before October, both of which we remain fully committed to.
‘Following changes announced today, we can confirm a net reduction of 639 roles.
‘These changes primarily reflect our existing plans to simplify parts of our businesses, which were in place prior to Covid-19.’