Westpac shelves offshoring plans

Westpac shelves offshoring plans

Australian banking group Westpac has ditched plans to shift hundreds of back office jobs from Sydney to an offshore centre in India.

The bank said in September that it was considering offshoring over 400 jobs from its loans processing department at its Concord operations in Sydney to a centre in Bangalore.

At the time the New South Wales (NSW) Premier Morris Iemma vowed to do all he could to keep the work in Australia and warned that any move to offshore jobs would be taken into account when a lucrative contract that Westpac has with the government expires.

Westpac says following a review of the move it has now shelved plans to shift the back office work offshore.

Paul Schroder, national secretary at Australia's Finance Sector Union (FSU), says Westpac's announcement came after "a sustained public backlash from staff and customers".

"This is a victory for workers, communities and customers across Australia who stood up for workers rights and have saved jobs and sensitive data from being sent off shore," says Schroder.

But although the Sydney jobs have been saved Westpac hasn't ruled out an offshoring move in the future, although the bank has pledged to keep customer data and call centres in Australia.

Earlier this year National Australia Bank (NAB) said it was offshoring a further 81 back office jobs from its finance and accounting unit to India under an outsourcing agreement with Accenture. NAB is also looking to shift around 100 credit card processing jobs to an offshore centre in a bid to cut costs.

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