- Santander UK consolidates office sites into six main locations, with Milton Keynes becoming its new corporate headquarters
- c.5,000 staff based at closing or consolidating sites will be offered new working arrangements combining working from home with access to local collaboration spaces
- Move reflects colleague feedback for more flexible working arrangements post-pandemic
Santander has today announced plans to consolidate its office sites into six main locations across the UK and introduce more flexible working. Milton Keynes, where the bank is investing £150m into a state-of-the-art new campus, will become the bank’s UK headquarters, alongside bases in Belfast, Bradford, Glasgow, London and Sheffield.
Following consultation with its Unions, Santander will close its Bootle, Newcastle, London Portman House and Manchester Deansgate offices by the end of 2021. It will also reduce its volume of office space at its London Triton Square, London Ludgate Hill, Leicester Carlton Park and Teesside sites.
c.5,000 staff based at closing or consolidating sites will be offered new dual location working arrangements, combining working from home with access to local spaces designed to enable team collaboration.
The plans reflect regular feedback gathered from Santander staff, with the desire for more flexible working arrangements remaining a consistent view over the course of the last year.
Nathan Bostock, Santander UK CEO, said: “The pandemic has accelerated the existing trend towards greater flexible working, and our colleagues have told us this has brought significant benefits for many of them. At the same time, physical spaces remain very important and our sites around the UK will provide our colleagues with first-class facilities fit for the future.
“We are investing £150m in our state-of-the-art new campus in Milton Keynes, which will become our new headquarters. Milton Keynes is one of the UK’s leading technology centres and with a number of innovative education and training providers on our doorstep, we believe it will provide us with excellent future access to talent and opportunities for colleagues to innovate and develop their skills.”
Pre-pandemic, occupancy levels at Santander’s office sites had already fallen to just 60%, as a result of its transformation programme and more colleagues choosing to work flexibly. During the pandemic, 85% of Santander’s office-based staff have been working from home, with new technology enabling more roles to be performed remotely for the first time, including contact centres and live chat capability. All Santander office-based staff, regardless of location, will remain working from home until at least 21 June 2021, reflecting government guidance to help manage the pandemic.
There is no change or impact to how Santander serves its customers as a result of the consolidation proposals and Santander will maintain a strong local, regional and national presence to support business, commercial and larger corporate clients.
In January 2021, Santander UK was awarded Top Employer status in the UK by the Top Employers Institute. The bank was assessed across a range of areas including People Strategy, Work Environment, Talent Acquisition, Learning, Wellbeing and Diversity & Inclusion.
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Santander UK is a financial services provider in the UK that offers a wide range of personal and commercial financial products and services. At 31 December 2020, the bank had around 21,900 employees and serves around 14 million active customers, via a nationwide branch network, telephone, mobile and online banking. Santander UK is subject to the full supervision of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) in the UK. Santander UK plc customers’ eligible deposits are protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) in the UK.
Banco Santander (SAN SM, STD US, BNC LN) is a leading retail and commercial bank, founded in 1857 and headquartered in Spain. It has a meaningful presence in 10 core markets in Europe and the Americas, and is one of the largest banks in the world by market capitalization. Its purpose is to help people and businesses prosper in a simple, personal and fair way. Santander is building a more responsible bank and has made a number of commitments to support this objective, including raising over €120 billion in green financing between 2019 and 2025, as well as financially empowering more than 10 million people over the same period. At the end of 2020, Banco Santander had more than a trillion euros in total funds, 148 million customers, of which 22.8 million are loyal and 42.4 million are digital, 11,000 branches and 191,000 employees.