Belfast Telegraph

Co-operative Bank to cut 200 jobs to help recovery

The Co-operative Bank is planning to cut 200 jobs under moves to reduce operating costs and continue its recovery.

Staff were told that the posts will go by next March, mainly affecting management and head office roles in Manchester and Stockport.

Deputy chief executive Liam Coleman said: "Decisions such as these are never easy, but these cost reductions are critical to progressing our turnaround and delivering a cost base which supports a sustainable core bank.

"Over the coming weeks we will continue to consult with colleagues and trade unions on these proposals and our focus will be to ensure that all impacted colleagues are treated sensitively and respectfully.

"We have made progress in turning the bank around since 2013 but have always been clear that the bank's recovery is a difficult journey. As we have said before, we will remain loss making in 2016 and 2017 and whilst we continue to make progress with our turnaround plan, in a challenging economic environment, maintaining our focus on costs and delivery of initiatives are key to building a more resilient and sustainable bank."

Unite national officer Rob MacGregor said: "The speed and breadth of these cuts will hit the Co-operative Bank's much cherished customer service and with it the bank's unique selling point.

"Compulsory redundancies are anathema to all trade unions, but the timing of this exercise just before Christmas is a real blow to our members.

"We will be supporting our members through this difficult time, and pressing the bank to reconsider these cuts where possible, which will leave loyal staff facing an uncertain Christmas and worrying new year."

A Co-op Bank spokesman added: " Since we started the turnaround we have faced significant challenges but we have taken the action required without damaging the customer service we are known for.

"The Bank is ranked third in the market for customer service and our focus will remain on this going forward."