The figures are truly staggering. If you include the £450 million Lloyds gave Sabadell to help cover the cost of transferring customers from the LBG system to Proteo4UK, the final cost of the biggest IT meltdown ever is likely to exceed £1 billion according to press reports. But that figure doesn’t include the reputational damage done to the TSB business which is going to take years to recover, if it ever recovers at all. Sabadell is going to want to recover that money from somewhere and we are concerned that once the dust has settled it will look to reduce staff numbers and close branches. It would be truly ironic that the very people that saved the Bank in the branches, contact centres and processing centres are the ones that will pay the ultimate price. The ones that created the mess will no doubt get off relatively scot free, with big pay offs.
We all thought TSB was going to be different.
It’s two months since the meltdown began but things are no better in the contact centres branches and processing centres. One member of staff said yesterday:
“You will find the branch and telephony staff now need answers as well as our customers.
I have come to a point where if there is a customer switching and having a go at us, I’m doing the same thing back. It’s not the customer’s fault but we are so tired of taking abuse and working a lot more than what we are meant to do.
You can be in the middle of a transaction and the system will crash and go down. Last couple of days I have been passing so many cash errors that I never used to get due to a system error and staying back till 9pm and longer to try and resolve these errors whilst some staff members are fasting.
No one higher up in the hierarchy cares for the staff wellbeing. The queues are going to the door constantly because of how slow this new system is. It is constant one after the other with no breaks.
I will come home and go straight to my room and drop into tears, have a panic attack but also not being able to sleep because of all the abuse we are getting, how tired we are and dreading work the next day.
We’ve dealt with this for the last 2 months.….. this seems to be ongoing and we can’t work like this any longer. What myself and staff members want to know is what is being done in order to resolve this as soon as possible”.
It seems that some Area Directors are trying to pretend that it’s ‘business as usual’ and are kidding themselves that the system is getting better. It isn’t, it’s just that staff are getting better at producing work arounds but even those can’t work when you’ve got a system that’s so unstable it crashes all the time. One Local Manager said in an email to the Union yesterday: “we have had X large cash errors in the last two weeks. Both members of staff in tears, working on their days off to look for said difference but when the Addlist of the teller has been calculated it appears that the figures on the system is corrupt.
How are we addressing this ….complete a difference form, email ADO and treat the partners as we would have before the IT meltdown…is this fair?? Partners who historically balance to the penny having difference against their name demoralising staff further, putting extra pressure on resourcing looking for said difference even though it might not even be a difference. And even if an error was made is it any wonder, the system for serving customers still not fit for purpose unless a multitude of work arounds are carried out for every transaction. Until the system is fixed surely no cash error can be assigned to a Partner … but no let’s put staff under even more pressure and make them feel like they are in the wrong”.
The Chairman of TSB recently said: “TSB is now functioning at, or close to, normal for the majority of TSB customers”. If the reports we are receiving from members working in branches and contact centres are true, and they are, then that statement can’t be right. We will be writing to Nicky Morgan, Chair of the Treasury Select Committee addressing that statement from the Chairman directly. We would like to hear from members in the branches, contact centres and processing centres telling us about all the things that are still wrong with the IT system and the affects those problems are having on customers.
8,689,968 Reasons Why?
It’s not rocket science. The Chairman and Chief Executive have both accepted that the IT migration has been a disaster; Paul Pester has accepted that in TSB the buck stops with him. Given those two facts you don’t need reports from Slaughter and May or the FCA or the Prudential Regulation Authority to conclude that Mr Pester has to take personal responsibility for the biggest IT meltdown in UK financial services. Andrew Bailey, Chief Executive of the FCA, has said: “ultimately the TSB Chief Executive Officer and Board are accountable for the decision to migrate. This accountability cannot be delegated or transferred to a third party…”.
The FCA’s message to Mr Pester seems pretty clear.
Members with any questions can contact the Union’s Advice Team on 01234 716029 (Choose Option 1) or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.