HSBC Bermuda has given redundancy notices to approximately 15 people. <em>*File photo</em>
HSBC Bermuda has given redundancy notices to approximately 15 people. *File photo

FRIDAY, OCT. 26: HSBC Bermuda has given redundancy notices to approximately 15 people over the past six weeks.

HSBC staff told the Bermuda Sun that Bank employees from several departments — including catering and IT — have been released.

The bank said it would try to find positions elsewhere within HSBC for affected employees.

It’s the latest in a series of job losses and business closures in a flagging economy. On Wednesday we revealed that Island Glass had shed five jobs. Two weeks ago, Capital G Bank made 13 people redundant and employees tell us the bank has let 24 people go since July. Last week we reported on the closure of some Front Street stores.

A number of the HSBC staff will be kept on through 2013 to assist with projects; some have already received confirmation of redeployment and others will finish with HSBC by December 31. 

One staff person estimated 14 people have been advised of -redundancy while another said 15.

The bank declined to comment on the specific number of people affected.

One employee who has recently been given notice of redundancy told the Bermuda Sun: “I don’t really feel I should have been made redundant, but what can you do? I’ve got a family to feed so I have to just keep my head down and try to find a job.”

Efficiency

An HSBC Bermuda spokesperson said: “We are continuously reviewing our business model, as are most business, to see how we can grow revenues and also ensure a cost effective and efficient proposition for our customers and shareholders .

“We will continue to assess functions that do not align with our core operating model.

“As always, we continue to work with those employees impacted by potential redundancy ensuring where ever possible that they are a priority focus for redeployment.

“We have had success training and redeploying staff into new roles and will continue to make accreditation and training a priority to provide opportunities for our staff and supporting our customers and providing new opportunities for staff whose roles are changing.”

Total workforce drops

In the Business Bermuda Review for 2010, HSBC was stated as having “just over 900” employees while the Bank’s website says it currently has over “700 employees locally.”

The apparent discrepancy is not explained solely by redundancies. The reduction in staffing includes transfers of activities and jobs to other firms in Bermuda plus natural attrition; return of work permit holders as well as some redundancies where the bank has been unable to re-deploy staff.

When HSBC Bermuda sold its insurance management operations to the Kane Group, all the employees were retained in the purchase.

In other cases, the bank has outsourced functions that are non-essential to banking to other local companies.

Outsourcing

Outsourcing corporate real estate and security functions are an example of this. It outsourced those to local firms — so those jobs were not necessarily lost to the economy — but those affected are no longer employed by the bank.

HSBC declined to go into specifics about how many redundancies it has had over the past two years.

Two weeks ago, Capital G Bank made 13 people redundant and employees tell us the bank has let 24 people go since July.