Aegon is to cut over 100 jobs and close half of its 12 regional sales centres in a restructure of the business.
The provider says it is to cut 142 roles and create 36 new positions leading to a net reduction of 106 jobs. It says the restructure is due to the changing work practices of advisers and the new requirements of the IFA market in the run-up to the RDR.
The move is the first stage in the provider’s business restructure which will see it reduce operating costs by 25 per cent by 2011. A further strategy update will be given by the end of September.
The provider is shutting six of its 12 regional sales centres. The new regional sales centres will be Scotland (based in Glasgow), Northern (based in Manchester), Midlands (based in Birmingham), London (based in Kingsway), South West and Wales (based in Bristol) and South Central (based in Guildford).
The Edinburgh, Leeds, East Midlands, South East, Watford and East Anglia sales centres will all close.
New business processing, previously managed from within the regional centres, will be centralised to its Edinburgh customer service centre.
Aegon says its existing corporate solutions sales team will be developed further to support its focus on workplace savings. Most of the newly created roles will be in the corporate sales and telephone support service.
Aegon UK sales director Duncan Jarrett says: “The financial advisory market is changing rapidly, as advisers prepare their business models for the changes brought about by the retail distribution review, and make greater use of technology in running their business. Our new sales structure reflects Aegon’s commitment to the adviser market.
“We know that advisers will continue to require high quality service and support, but they want it in a way that suits the way they work, saves them time and enables them to provide a more efficient service to clients. We have piloted elements of our new approach and we know it will enable us to provide a better quality of service to all our advisers, and ensure we maintain and develop our adviser relationships.”
Aegis General Secretary Brian Linn says: “This is a very worrying time for the UK finance industry in general as companies look to reposition, restructure, and reduce operating costs. We acknowledge the economic and regulatory drivers for this change. However, the news that six out of twelve regional sales centres are to close has come as a major shock to our members.
“We remain committed to supporting our members at this difficult time. We will continue to work with the company throughout the consultation period to identify as many opportunities as possible for those directly impacted.”