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Barclays Confirms 422 British IT Jobs To Go In Restructuring

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelance and long standing contributor to TechWeek Europe

Barclays is to axe 422 IT positions in the UK, with a further 200 positions being lost overseas as well

Barclays is undertaking a restructuring of its IT division, which will see the loss of some 422 IT jobs in the UK.

A further 200 IT jobs are also to go outside the UK.

“We need to make essential changes to our technology and infrastructure division so that we can innovate in new technologies and services for our customers, and be as effective and efficient as possible,” a Barclays spokesperson told TechWeek Europe in an emailed statement.

Regrettable Action

“Whilst regrettably this will mean job losses, we will make every effort to mitigate compulsory redundancies and are working closely with Unite and impacted staff.”

The bank meanwhile told TechWeek Europe that it employs 57,000 people in the UK in total, with the IT division employing some 2,000 people before the job cuts. “The 422 posts impacted represent 0.74 percent of our UK staff and this figure is before redeployment,” said Barclays.

It said it would make every effort to redeploy impacted staff, and would shortly open a voluntary redundancy register in order to minimise compulsory redundancies wherever possible.

TechWeek Europe understands that the jobs cuts are part of Barclays’ efforts to restructure its tech division as it makes essential changes to our technology and infrastructure division so that it can innovate in new technologies and services for its customers. “No business can afford to stand still and we have to be as efficient as possible,” said the spokesperson.

But the Unite Union has condemned the job cuts, especially as it feels that some of these jobs are being ‘offshored’ to Lithuania.

“The decision by Barclays Technology to cut 422 jobs is a new year’s blow for the staff,” said David Fleming, Unite national officer. “Unite has strongly opposed the sending of some of this work to Lithuania, when there are already highly trained workers carrying out this work.”

Offshoring Denial

“The vast majority of jobs will be going from Radbrooke Hall, Cheshire. There will also be jobs cut in Northampton and a scattering among other sites around the country,” Fleming said.

But Barclays has denied that jobs were being transferred to Lithuania.

Barclays told TechWeek Europe that while there will be a very small increase in IT jobs in Lithuania, there have also been job cuts in that country as well.

Barclays is not one of the British banks that had to be bailed out by the British taxpayer, but the announcement comes on top of the recent announcement by the tax payer owned RBS that it is axing 3,500 jobs at at its investment operation, on top of 2,000 already announced at the end of last year.

Other bad news for the banking sector emerged in May last year, when Which? Money warned that British banks are regularly breaching data protection rules.

It found that between August 2009 and August 2010, there had been 515 complaints lodged with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) about data protection breaches by eight of the UK’s biggest banks and building societies.