The Financial Ombudsman Service is planning to hire more staff after cutting hundreds since 2016.
The complaints adjudicator is forecasting an increase in full-time equivalent headcount from 2,821 in August to 2,978 in December.
The data was acquired by Mortgage Strategy‘s sister title Money Marketing under the Freedom of Information Act.
While headcount is expected to reduce back down to 2,943 by next March, the level will still remain around 120 higher than currently is, and bucks a trend that saw FOS shed 600 jobs in 2016.
Back in January 2016, FOS’ headcount stood at just over 3,600.
FOS has outlined plans to move towards a more flexible working system, where ombudsmen see claims quicker and queues do not build up on niche cases where specialist ombudsman were kept on retainer but may have had inconsistent workflow.
As at August this year, the FOS had 1,077 general caseworkers compared with 164 ombudsmen. 926 staff were devoted to ‘mass claims’ like payment protection insurance.