It didn’t take TSB long to use the coronavirus pandemic as an opportunity to cut frontline jobs in a desperate bid to save money. We are on the verge of the second wave of the pandemic in some parts of the country but TSB has decided that now is the best time to throw 929 LBAs under the bus. And let us not forget, these 929 LBAs are the very same people who came in everyday when the virus was at its most aggressive to make sure that TSB survived. And the thanks they get from Debbie Crosbie and her senior management team, many of whom watched the spread of the virus whilst working from the comfort of their homes, is to see their jobs disappear.
And let’s be clear, LBAs are just the first group to be sacrificed by Mrs Crosbie. When it announced its recent results, Sabadell said TSB: “had the potential to intensify and accelerate cost-cutting”. This is just the beginning of what’s going to be a very difficult year for staff in all parts of the bank. What members need at this time is a strong, independent trade union that is going to stand up to the bank, not a ‘lap dog’. Accord has said of the bank’s announcement that: “We regret any reduction in employment opportunities, particularly at this unprecedented time”. That’s it. It doesn’t condemn what the bank is doing, indeed it has no real policy because that would upset TSB: it merely “regrets” what’s happening. It’s no wonder that TSB can get away with anything it wants when it comes up against that kind of opposition. TSB staff deserve better.
The 929 LBAs have three options.
Option 1. To become fully accredited at Level 3 and move into the LBB role. However, it’s being made clear to staff that only those who are fully committed to this role will be given the opportunity to move across. Some staff are already being steered away from applying for the LBB role because of their perceived lack of commitment. Equally, some staff are being told they if they don’t perform in the new role then TSB can use the new performance improvement process, agreed by Accord and Unite, to manage them out of the business. That is unacceptable. Staff have a legal entitlement to the LBB role and we will do whatever it takes to protect our members. Staff who have been steered away from applying for the LBB role should contact the union straightaway.
Option 2. If staff don’t want to move to the LBB role then they can leave on the agreed redundancy terms and that will probably be before the end of the year.
Option 3. The bank has said that the LBA role will disappear by the middle of 2021. If LBA staff have not been found an alternative role in TSB by then, the bank will make them compulsorily redundant. Members who are considering their options should understand that the redundancy terms are the same whether you leave on the voluntarily or compulsorily terms.
It is important that members contact the union’s Bedford office to discuss their options before they make any final decisions.
Transactions v Interactions
In TSB customer transactions are out and customer interactions are in. The fact that a transaction can lead to an interaction, which it most certainly can’t in the digital world, is lost on TSB. We also understand that TSB is looking to reduce the times when customers can carry out basic branch transactions as part of its strategy of forcing them to move to digital alternatives.
When she launched the ‘Do What Matters Plan’, Debbie Crosbie said: “It is critical for all of us to think beyond today and consider what TSB contributes to the communities we operate in and the difference we can make”. She also said: “TSB needs to deliver more than just commercial performance”. If those words are to mean anything, then Mrs Crosbie needs to reconsider what she’s doing to the TSB branch network. Creating a wasteland and calling it progress is only going to lead to the slow death of TSB.
Members with any questions or would like advice on working from home should contact the Union’s Advice Team on 01234 716029 (choose Option 1).