Santander Portugal this Wednesday with the Program of “Unilateral Terminations Under Law” The unions have already reported the features of this. “Last resort scaleThis is justified by the fact that the mutual exit and early retirement plan does not result in saving the costs necessary for the bank “to ensure the bank’s resilience and sustainability for other workers.” Unions do not accept.
In a video message the CEO sent to the workers Pedro Castro and Almeida, Which the observer had access to, says the director Only in June can the number of people who will have to leave “unilaterally” be determined. Because that will depend on the number of those who, in the coming weeks, will accept to leave as part of the volunteer programs.
This Wednesday, it was reported that Santander reached an agreement to leave 68 workers in the first quarter of this year, as part of the bank’s restructuring, and Expects to cancel 100 to 150 more jobs that “have become redundant”. This information came on the day the bank announced a drop of more than 70% in first-quarter results, after it had allocated nearly € 165 million to bear the costs of what the bank calls a “transformation plan.”
The bank president assumes that A voluntary departure would “hardly” suffice To reach the goal of reducing costs, so in the month of June, more information will be known about the number of iterations that will be made. A general voluntary exit program is being implemented for employees aged 55 or over (Plan 55+), who currently represent around 950 employees of the bank.
In the letter to workers, Pedro Castro e Almeida refers to the decline in bank profitability at the European level, low interest rates (or negativity) and the change in the “behavior” of customers who increasingly prefer the digital path. It is for this reason that the bank, says the manager, needs to invest in this technological upgrading “at the expense of physical existence” that currently exists.
The director added, moreover, that the absorption of Banif Bank and Banco Popular were “important moments” in the bank’s history, but that that “delayed” the bank on this path of modernization. Pedro Castro e Almeida says the bank has “a very complex structure, too many branches and redundant situations in many areas”.
“Without this adjustment, we would lose ground every day to our competitors, who are not just banks,” says Pedro Castro e Almeida, warning that the bank will enter a period in which “many of our employees will leave the bank.”
The director, in advance, left “a big thank you to all of them,” and also left “a commitment to provide the best possible conditions for a new stage of life,” which includes conditions for departure or prior retirement “legally above”, and to maintain the terms of credit and protection (health insurance and access to SAMS, In some cases) and a program Placement, To help find a new career path.
In a reaction statement, Mais Sindicato, SBC and SBN came on Wednesday to “remind” the Santander Tota management that they “have assured them that there will be no exit from the bank except in agreement with the workers. They demand that you fulfill your promise.”
A joint statement issued by the unions, where the accusation is also left, noted: “In contrast to the failure invoked by the bank, O Mais, SBN and SBC will not allow threats and will resort to all legal and other means to protect workers.” The early retirement process is far from complete: of about 1000 workers meet the requirements, even half of them have not been contacted. “
Unions want to believe that Santander will know and want to maintain social peace and treat workers with fairness and dignity. If it’s a big bank today, it owes its workers. If the bank adopts any other measure, Mais, SBN, and SBC will use all legal and other means to protect the workers. “There should be no doubt,” the statement said.
Another union, the National Union of Bank Staff and Technicians (SNQTB), said in a statement that it considered “an insult to the workers of Santander Bank, the decision of this bank to start, as of April 28, 2021, measures targeting employees unilaterally. The reduction will include between 100 and 100%.” 150 workers. “
“Procedures for unilateral reductions or other euphemisms that mean non-consensual measures to reduce labor force constitute a crime for Santander Bank workers. This measure announced by Banco Santander today is completely unfair, unqualified, unjustified and unacceptable,” says Paulo Gonçalves Marcos , Chairman of SNQTB.
According to data provided this Wednesday by the foundation led by Pedro Castro e Almeida, in March of this year, the total number of workers was 5,954, 215 less than the same month last year. The bank had 386 branches in March, 96 fewer than the previous year.