Commonwealth Bank has indicated it will be temporarily closing up shop across 115 branches, with 500 staff to be moved across to the major’s bank’s call centre and online support teams.
The big four bank reported calls to its hardship line had increased by 800 per cent since the coronavirus crisis kicked off, while visits by customers to bank branches had fallen by more than 50 per cent as people have adopted social distancing and lockdown requirements.
The branch staff transition is set to take place from Thursday, with closures primarily in metro areas.
“Since the pandemic was declared in early March, we have received more than 1 million calls and online requests for help,” a spokesperson for CBA said.
“Transaction volumes in branch have dropped significantly as a result while there has been a large increase in customers doing their banking online through NetBank and the CommBank app.
“To minimise inconvenience for branch customers, the vast majority of the temporary closures will occur at branches where another branch is operating normally within five kilometres. Our ATMs at temporarily closed branches will continue to operate as usual. Customers will also be able to use our [email protected] service at Australia Post offices to do day-to-day transactional banking.”
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].