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RBS to cut 40% of IT staff in London by 2020

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has announced that it will cut its IT workforce by 40% in its London operations by 2020.

UK trade union Unite stated the IT layoffs along with a 65% reduction in the number of contractors will take the total job cuts to 880 that include 650 permanent staff and 230 contractors.

In 2016, RBS employed 2,200 people in its IT department and now, the announcement will bring down the workforce to 950 full time staff by 2020. And, it follows last year’s announcement to cut 600 people.

The British and Irish trade union said that the bank's restructuring and offshoring move "as wholly unacceptable."

Unite national officer Rob MacGregor said: “Royal Bank of Scotland is continuing with its savage jobs culling program with today’s announcement of a 40% cut in IT staff, totalling nearly 900 staff. The decade of slashing jobs has done nothing to boost morale, increase consumer confidence or improve the bank’s performance.

“By 2020 just a fraction of the RBS IT function will remain, leaving this organisation operating a skeleton service with the customers and remaining staff paying the price."

The state-owned lender is undertaking a major restructuring of its business to return to profit after posting losses for several years. Currently, the UK government owns 71% stake in the bank.

In March, the bank announced that it would close 158 branches in the UK, as more customers switch to digital banking.

RBS witnessed a 43% decline in branch transactions since 2010, while online and mobile transactions surged by over 400% during the same period, BBC reported.

Image: RBS proposes to cut 880 IT jobs. Photo: Courtesy of Royal Bank of Scotland.