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Lloyds Slashes Jobs as Banking Customers Shift to Digital

Lloyds Bank

Lloyds Bank is reportedly eliminating 1,600 jobs amid an increased focus on digital banking.

The British lender also plans to create 830 new jobs for its “relationship growth” team to understand customers’ financial aims and offer services at branches, via video meetings and over the phone, a Lloyds spokesperson told Reuters Thursday (Jan. 25).

“As more customers choose to manage their day-to-day banking online, it’s important our people are available when it matters most,” the Lloyds spokesperson said.

The cuts are slightly lower than the 2,500 the bank was reportedly considering late last year. Another U.K. bank, Barclays, cut 5,000 jobs last year. As reported here, it was part of a larger trend in the industry, with the world’s largest banks slashing more than 60,000 jobs.

Banking’s shift to digital is happening on this side of the Atlantic as well, PYMNTS wrote last year, with bank earnings suggesting “some critical mass as consumers continue to use online channels to conduct at least some aspects of daily financial life.”

Earnings calls for banks such as JPMorgan, Citigroup and Wells Fargo show that “the branch experience itself is changing, and is being reinvented to fit more fully into an omnichannel effort to meet consumers where they want to be met,” that report said.

Some banks are closing branches altogether, such as Truist, which said earlier this month it plans to close 3.5% of its physical locations in March.

“In response to our clients’ evolving preferences, these decisions create additional opportunities for investment in our digital capabilities,” the North Carolina-based lender said in a statement.

As PYMNTS wrote earlier this month, the rise in digital banking has been fueled by the  increasing popularity of mobile banking apps, especially among younger generations.

“In fact, the convenience and ease of use offered by these apps have made them the preferred method of banking for many customers, with the majority of millennials, Generation Z, and Generation X consumers using them as their primary financial tools,” that report said.

But although digital banking has its advantages, numerous challenges remain, according to “Why Digital-First Banking Does Not Mean Digital-Only,” the latest report in the Digital-First Banking Tracker® Series by PYMNTS Intelligence and NCR Voyix.

The study found that things like applying for mortgages, loans, and conducting major financial transactions are often seen as best done in person, meaning digital banks “need to find a balance between enhancing digital experiences and facilitating human-centric customer interaction to meet the evolving needs and expectations of their customers.”