Barclays has confirmed a significant reduction in its global workforce, cutting around 5,000 jobs from its total of 84,000 employees last year. Approximately a quarter of these job cuts have occurred in the UK. The move is part of Barclays’ efforts to “simplify and reshape the business” and improve profitability. The reduction in headcount has been achieved through a combination of redundancies and unfilled vacancies during a hiring freeze. The affected roles are primarily in back-office support teams, reflecting a streamlining of management layers and advancements in technology and automation capabilities.
Barclays emphasised that the job cuts are in line with the plans announced in its third-quarter results in October of the previous year. The bank aims to enhance service quality and deliver higher returns. The latest workforce reduction adds to the ongoing savings program at Barclays, which has seen job cuts across its retail and investment banking businesses. Additionally, the bank has announced the closure of nearly 200 branches in recent years, citing the shift in customer preferences toward digital transactions.
The job cuts at Barclays, one of the largest in its recent history since the 2008 financial crisis, are expected to intensify scrutiny on the bank ahead of the publication of its full-year results for 2023 next month. While Barclays reported pre-tax profits of £1.9 billion for the three months ending September, slightly exceeding analysts’ forecasts, the figure was lower than the £2 billion reported a year ago.