RBS is to drastically slash its face-to-face advice services, leading to around 550 job cuts.
The bank confirmed to Mortgage Strategy‘s sister title Money Marketing that 221 specialist advice roles will be axed, leaving face-to-face investment advice only available to customers with £250,000 or more of assets.
In addition, 195 face-to-face protection advisers are due to be scrapped. As a result protection advice will only be given over the phone from Edinburgh.
As a consequence protection and investment advice will no longer be delivered in Bristol.
Other roles due to be axed include support and quality control staff. In all around 550 RBS advice staff will be impacted. In addition, 38 jobs are under threat as part of a broader restructuring within the branch and private banking divisions.
Unite the union is in negotiations with RBS over the proposed job cuts.
An RBS spokesman says: “We want to help as many customers as possible invest their money in the right way for them. The demand for face-to-face investment advice is changing. Our customers increasingly want to bank with us using digital technology.
“As a result, we are scaling back our face-to-face advisers and significantly investing in an online investing platform that enables us to help a new group of customers with as little as £500 to invest.”
On protection, he adds: “Due to the gradual decline in the number of customers in our protection business, this service will now be available over the telephone.
“We will move to this new service on 11 March and will proactively contact all customers to ensure a smooth transition.”
Unite regional officer Lyn Turner says: “Ending face to face services within branches loses an important personal connection between customers and the bank. This jeopardises the bank’s ‘social licence’, the public goodwill RBS rely on to operate.
“Unite puts the job security and wellbeing of our members first. We are demanding that the bank offer genuine opportunities for redeployment and alternative work to anyone who is impacted by these announcements.”