More than 200 jobs at risk at Santander in Bootle

Banking giant Santander has put 334 UK jobs at risk in a ‘transformation’ programme, including 235 at Bootle, but the CWU union is hopeful compulsory redundancies can be avoided. Tony McDonough reports

Santander UK’s offices in Bootle, known locally as ‘the Giro’


More than 200 jobs are at risk at banking giant Santander’s Merseyside base.

This week Santander UK told 334 people across its UK operation that their jobs were at risk under the company’s ‘transformation’ programme. Of that total 235 people are based at its office complex in Bootle.

Around 2,000 are currently based at the site, although many are working home due to COVID-19. The CWU union says it is “concerned” at the announcement but is hopeful the cuts can be achieved through voluntary redundancies or through redeploying people in new roles.

Santander says it is looking to create a “simpler structure” with a plan to automate and digitise a number of back office functions and outsource some work to a third party supplier.

CWU national officer for Santander Sally Bridge, said: “The union’s Santander national team is obviously concerned by these proposals but our primary focus is on identifying and firming up alternative roles for all impacted members in Bootle who do not wish to take redundancy package.

“We’re already pushing the bank hard on alternative opportunities and it’s positive that 456 roles have been identified as vacancies including a large number in the financial crime team – and are heartened by the statements that have already been made by the management on its commitment to redeployment and reskilling.

“As such, although the number of employees affected by this part of Santander Operations’ ongoing transformation is substantial – with Bootle being disproportionately affected – we’re hopeful we’ll be able to mitigate and avoid compulsory redundancies.”

In September, Santander put plans to demolish and rebuild the Bootle base, known locally as ‘the Giro’, on hold. The £75m project had been approved by Sefton Council but the bank said the COVID-19 crisis had caused a rethink. It said it would consult its staff on “future ways of working”.

On the latest announcement, Ms Bridge added: “Affected members will be kept fully updated as the formal consultation progresses, and anyone with questions or concerns should contact their local representative in the first instance.”

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