Having already announced plans to shutter fifty branches and reduce opening hours, Nationwide Building Society is taking further steps to reduce physical contact and unburden overworked staff members by shutting down all branches and call centre operations over weekends.
In a letter to clients, the UK building society says that it took the "difficult decision" not to open branches or call centres on weekends "so that we can focus our resources on providing our crucial weekday services in a safe and reliable way".
Call centres for lost or stolen cards, and for fraud or other enquiries about the security of accounts, will remain open 24/7.
"It’s vital that we manage our resources to keep our phone lines and branches open as much as possible for those in need who can’t get help with their situation online," says the Society. "That’s proving especially hard at the moment, with so many of our colleagues not being able to come into work. We’re also finding that many of the calls we’re receiving are for simple requests that members could go online for. That prevents us from helping other members who really need to talk to someone."