Barclays apologises for call centre delays

Brokers say Barclays’ decision to move its mortgage call centres back from India to the UK has in some instances resulted in them waiting up to an hour for the calls to be dealt with.

Mortgage Strategy revealed last week that in November Barclays had moved its mortgage telephone operations from India to the UK.

It also apologised to mortgage intermediaries who were experiencing delays as a result of the move.

A Barclays spokeswoman said: “Last month we implemented a change to move all existing mortgage services telephony operations in India to our UK based teams.

“We’re aware that some brokers have experienced a longer waiting time during the initial transition and for this we offer our apologies.”

A number of brokers have been frustrated at the delays and question why Barclays could not have done more to handle call volumes.

John Charcol senior technical manager Ray Boulger says: “I think the delays we’ve experienced with Barclays have been absolutely appalling at times. If they are keeping brokers waiting an hour on the phone, what does that say to the broker other than ‘we don’t value your business’?”

Perception Finance managing director David Sheppard says he does not understand why Barclays decided to bring the centres back to the UK.

He says: “I can appreciate some people bemoan having to deal with overseas call centres but I never had any problems or bad experiences with them.

“My main question would be: how can Barclays have been so obviously under-prepared for the change? They know the call volumes they receive and going by the experiences myself and other broker have been having, they clearly are under-staffed and I cannot understand how or why.”

It is not known whether any job losses resulted from the move and the bank has thus far failed to give the reason for bringing the call centres back to the UK.

Last month Barclays announced it is cutting 1,700 jobs from across its branch network, including cashiers, personal bankers, operational specialists and bank managers.