RBS to cut 550 jobs as it moves from human to automated services

Some 220 jobs will be lost as RBS introduces an online investment platform, more than 250 jobs will go from its insurance services division, as well as 80 administrative support staff.

Face-to-face investment guidance will only be available for people who have £250,000 or more to invest. Other customers will have to use an automated platform, which will launch later this year.

A NatWest and RBS spokesperson said: “The demand for face to face investment advice is changing. Our customers increasingly want to bank with us using digital technology.

“As a result, we are scaling back our face-to-face advisers and significantly investing in an online investing platform that enables us to help a new group of customers with as little as £500 to invest.”

Protection advice, for example when arranging life insurance, will no longer be available in person, but over the phone instead, resulting in around 250 job losses.

The bank blamed a fall in the number of customers using its insurance services for the move to a phone-only service.

This comes as the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said automated advice would be more cost-effective, engaging and accessible for customers and called for help in bringing such automated models to the mass market.

Last week, RBS said it was rolling out human-like artificial intelligence, known as Luvo, to help staff answer queries from small business clients.