Norwich Union offshores another 950 jobs

Norwich Union offshores another 950 jobs

Norwich Union is exporting another 950 jobs to overseas centres in Asia, leading to further compulsory redundancies at the insurer's UK operations.

Around 760 of the roles will be moved to India and will provide back office administration services for Norwich Union's life and pensions and general insurance businesses. The remaining 190 jobs will be predominantly finance support roles based in Sri Lanka.

Norwich Union parent company Aviva says the move will lead to no more than 150 compulsory redundancies in the UK, mainly from operations in Norwich and York, adding that its previous experience has shown that most job reductions can be achieved through normal staff turnover, redeployment and retraining.

Gary Withers, Norwich Union Life's chief executive, says: "We operate in very competitive markets where customers continually seek better value for money and quality of service.

"The experience of our existing offshore operations shows that the service levels in India continue to match those that we achieve in our UK operations. Expanding our offshore operations will give us the increased capacity we need."

Financial services union Amicus has reacted furiously to the move. Hugh Scullion, Amicus Regional Officer, says: "We will not accept compulsory redundancies as a consequence of offshoring in any company and that will be fundamental to our negotiations with Norwich Union."

Norwich Union has already shifted 3700 jobs to India under its offshoring programme, which will see 7000 roles moved to overseas centres by the end of 2007.

A recent survey conducted by Amicus found that 99.9% of staff at Norwich Union were afraid further job cuts under the company's offshoring plans, and over half of respondents (57%) claim to have dealt with complaints from customers over the service of offshore operations.

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