National Bank to lay off 150 employees


National Bank to lay off 150 employees
A photo of one of National Bank's branches :PHOTO COURTESY

National Bank of Kenya has announced plans to lay off 150 employees, becoming the latest lender to cut its workforce in a drive aimed at lowering costs.

National Bank will offer employees aged 35 and above who have worked at the lender for over five years an opportunity to take up a voluntary early retirement scheme.

This is the second time in three years the lender has cut its staff numbers after letting go of 200 employees in 2014.

National Bank chief executive officer Wilfred Musau said the early retirement plan seeks to align the staff headcount with strategic needs of the bank.

“We believe the scheme is employee-friendly and is good for the bank too, thus a win-win deal for both parties,” Mr Musau said.

The bank expects to have completed the exercise by February 1.

Under the VER offer, employees who opt for the scheme will get a severance pay equivalent to one months’ salary for each completed year of work.

The bank has however opted to increase the send off package for those above the age of 50, offering a severance pay at the rate of two months’ salary for each full year remaining to the retirement age of 60.

Banks have been rationalizing staff numbers and even moving towards mobile and internet banking to cut costs.

Last year Family Bank announced plans to let go off 150 employees while KCB Group let go of an unknown number of employees under a similar VER scheme.

In addition to the severance pay, affected employees will be entitled to a full medical cover for the remainder of 2018 and a discretionary loan rebate of 20percent if their outstanding loans are cleared within 6 months.

Mr Musau said the move will see National Bank enjoying improved cost management benefits in the medium term.

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