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Pru to cull pensions jobs in offshore move

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Prudential is moving 81 individual annuities jobs out of Reading, including offshoring some roles to Mumbai, India.

A minority of roles will be moved to Craigforth in Scotland. The individual annuities division handles servicing and bereavement.

It is understood the offshoring could start in October. Unite the Union has started a 45-day consultation with Prudential.

Unite finance national officer Dominic Hook says: “Prudential knows full well that offshoring is a toxic issue. That’s why transferring a handful of public-facing jobs to Scotland will be used as a smoke screen to hide the fact that the majority of this highly technical and skilled work will go offshore.”

He adds: “Behind the buzzwords used to justify the decision is the fact that Prudential want to pay someone in Mumbai far less to do the same work. Offshoring is cynical, exploitative and ultimately it will be the firm’s customers who will pay the price.”

“Unite will stand with our members in Reading and as we prepare to enter consultation we warn Prudential that nothing is off the table when it comes to defending our members.”

A Prudential spokesperson adds: “In line with other providers, post-Pension Freedom, we have experienced a fall in the demand for individual annuity products in favour of more flexible retirement income solutions.”

“As a result of this reduced customer demand and the realignment of our operating model to service this business, we are proposing to make a number of changes within the teams that support annuity administration. This has regrettably resulted in around 80 permanent roles being put at risk of redundancy.”

The Prudential offshoring move follows Legal & General and outsourcing firm Diligenta announcing they will either close operations or cut jobs in Surrey.

As well, Capita pensions staff are considering strike action after voting to reject the introduction of a performance-related pay system at the outsourcing firm.

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