Abbey National is to invest £5.5 million over the next two years in creating a new customer relationship management operation in Belfast.
The Invest Northern Ireland-backed project, which will create 149 new jobs over the next two years, will make Belfast the main centre for Abbey National's customer outreach programme, and will double the number of people proactively contacting its customers. It will expand upon Abbey's existing Mays Meadow call and software centre, which already employs 707 people in the province
The two-phase project aims to strengthen relationships with the bank's customers and, in particular, many customers with whom Abbey National has had limited contact recently.
Abbey National's customer sales director, Mark Pain, says the project is part of the bank's new strategy to focus more closely on UK personal financial services.
"This new Customer Outreach Centre is part of the root and branch change underway within Abbey National," he says. "We're confident it will help us get closer to our customers and help build the foundations for the successful delivery of our new strategy – particularly getting the right people in the right place to serve customers better."