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Royal London jobs go in multi-tied switch

Royal London Group is to cut 690 jobs, including 200 at its Scottish Life subsidiary, following a fundamental review of its business, which will see its direct salesforce culled to make way for a second-tier multi-tied force.

Removing duplication in areas such as IT, human resources and admin will see Scottish Life lose almost one-fifth of it workforce.

Royal says the review was prompted by its purchase of Scottish Life last year and United Assurance in 2000. But it says the jobs at Scottish Life will not be lost until the firm ensures the same level of service.

Overall, there will be more focus on intermediary distribution within the group, with Royal&#39s direct salesforce cut from 350 to 150.

But it also plans to expand its second-tier salesforce – currently selling unregulated products – by 200. The company says it intends the new salesforce to become multi-tied once regulation permits.

The total net head count for the group falls from 4,500 to 4,100.

Royal London group chief executive Mike Yardley says: “In a fiercely competitive market, with the 1 per cent world placing pressure on profit margins, it is necessary for us to regularly review our approach and our structure. We know that the proposed redundancies will come as a disappointment for those employees affected. We will do everything we can to support our employees at this time.”

The Abacus director Philip Martin says: “I would be astonished if other companies are not looking to reduce head counts from the current bloated levels. It is very difficult for companies to plan strategy in the current environment.

“Royal London&#39s seems to be based on what-ifs and I am not sure anyone has committed to producing Sandler suite products.”


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