Branch network – lockdown easing
We’re pleased that the branch network senior leadership team recognises the on-going threat and has planned a slow, steady route out of lockdown.
A newsflash has been sent to our members in the three branch networks; Halifax, Lloyds and Bank of Scotland, detailing what’s going to change when they get to work from Monday 24th May.
The light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter. As more and more of us get our jabs, the incidence of serious illness and death is falling. But COVID-19 hasn’t gone away.
We’re pleased that the branch network senior leadership team recognises the on-going threat and has planned a slow, steady route out of lockdown. This brief update covers what’s going to change when you get to work from Monday 24th May.
Very little, as it happens, except more customers may return to branches as each nation continues to relax the rules and open up more services and venues. Social distancing is still very important and must be observed at work and face coverings must still be worn in branch (colleagues as well as customers). And if you can and are working from home (e.g. MaPAs), then you should continue to do so. Here are the small changes:
- The limit of working in two branches per week across a pool will increase slightly to three – but only in limited exceptional circumstances (e.g. to keep a branch open or support mortgage appointments) and only if signed off by an Area Director.
- CRM prompts will gradually return along with other support to refresh your product knowledge so you’re ready to start talking to customers again about their financial needs and to enhance the quality of their visit to branch.
That’s it for now. But more change is likely next month given the UKs PM’s suggestion that – in England at least – all legal limits on social contact will be removed and remaining premises re-opened.
We’re talking to the bank right now about its plans for the next stage of lockdown easing. And we want to know what you think. Should screens be removed, for example? What about masks – can you ditch them? Do you still want free hand sanitizer at work? There’s lots to think about.
Tell us what worries you most and what safeguards you consider vital to your health and safety at work. Complete a feedback form that will help shape our agenda.
Before we go, we just wanted to clear up a frequent question about 6 day working. We understand some members are being told they must permanently work 6 days on the trot to make up any hours that they can’t do because of shortened branch opening hours. That’s not what should be happening. There’s no intention from the senior leadership team to drive permanent 6 day working weeks.
You should be talking to your line manager about how best you can fit your contracted hours into the revised opening hours – offering as much flexibility as possible. But if you can’t fit them all in for significant personal reasons then the promise to pay you full pay is still in place. So, if you think what’s being asked of you is unreasonable, give us a call or drop us an email – contact details at the end of this update (look for your officer by postcode).
There may well be some more difficult discussions to face into when that safety net is removed so it’s probably a good time to start thinking about your working pattern, work/life balance etc. If you need advice or support about your individual situation, please get in touch.
Thanks, as always, for being an Accord member.
Further updates will follow.