As part of a restructuring exercise, HSBC will shut down 82 branches across Britain, during April to September 2021. This will also involve slashing 340 managerial jobs and closing certain counter services in other branches. Hundreds of junior employees may be relocated. A 100 senior retail roles were already slashed in November 2020.
This restructuring is expected to help the Bank cut costs and increase shareholder returns. As part of this cost-cutting exercise and endeavour to streamline operations, the Bank will cut about 35,000 jobs globally over the next couple of years.
The number of branches of HSBC in the UK will be reduced to 511. These will comprise full-service branches, cash-service branches, digital-service branches and pop-up branches. While the full-service branches will cater to customers in the bigger cities and towns, the cash-service branches will cater to locals who require cash.
In March 2020, job cuts were stalled when the coronavirus outbreak happened. The Bank did not want its staff to suffer due to job loss and struggle to find new jobs amidst the pandemic. However, the layoffs were resumed in October.
In the last five years, it is reported that HSBC has witnessed a fall in the number of customer visits to its branches. Apparently, 90 per cent of customer interactions happen online, or over the phone.
Because of the pandemic, banks across the world have had to resort to reducing expenses and investing in digital technology.