The big four bank has indicated it will roll back around 1,000 support jobs to Australia from overseas, following a surge in demand for customer assistance through the COVID-19 pandemic.
The change will see Westpac return all of its call centre jobs to Australia, with the new roles to become part of a distributed workforce across regional and metro locations, some working remotely.
The new staff will support call centres as well as provide processing and operational assistance to functions such as home lending and consumer finance.
Meanwhile, the bank stated it will still maintain overseas labour in areas such as technology and operations.
The creation of the 1,000 Australian jobs is expected to initially increase costs by around $45 million per annum by the end of full-year 2021.
Westpac chief executive Peter King admitted despite the bank adding resourcing to support increased demand, its response times had been “too slow” at times.
“Today’s announcement is a further step in transforming our business and mortgage operations, [helping support] local employment, reducing the risk of offshore distribution, and accelerating our ability to simplify processes through digitisation,” Mr King said.
“We will also be returning all dedicated voice roles to Australia to enhance the capacity of our existing call centres. This will mean when a customer calls us, it will be answered by someone in Australia.”
He added bringing the jobs back was made possible by changing work patterns, as well as the upgrade to the bank’s technology infrastructure.
Implementation is expected to take around 12 months.
“We plan to fill the roles with new and existing employees, with the jobs distributed across regional and metro areas,” Mr King said.
Sarah Simpkins is a journalist at Momentum Media, reporting primarily on banking, financial services and wealth.
Prior to joining the team in 2018, Sarah worked in trade media and produced stories for a current affairs program on community radio.
You can contact her on [email protected].
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