As part of its plan to reduce costs and remain competitive, Danske Bank is prepared to reduce its employee count with up to 1,600 job cuts.

The job cuts are set to happen during the next 6-12 months for Danske Bank and will be voluntary redundancy on “special and favourable terms”.

“It is never easy to reduce the number of colleagues, and we will do our best to ensure that we do this in the most decent and respectful way. However, we need to adapt to the structural changes that the financial sector is experiencing, and to remain competitive in a low-margin and highly competitive market, we simply have to reduce our costs,” said Chris Vogelzang, CEO of Danske Bank.

“We will start by giving colleagues who are considering trying something else in their work life or who might want to retire, a better opportunity to do so. Specifically, we offer them to do so on better terms and with greater flexibility than would otherwise have been the case. Together with the existing hiring freeze, we hope that it can help reduce the number of actual layoffs at a later time,” added Karsten Breum, member of the executive leadership team and head of group HR at Danske Bank.

Danske Bank employs more than 22,000 people in total, of which around half are employed in Denmark.

In a different move, National Australia Bank (NAB) is recruiting an additional 500 new employees to the teams focussed on supporting its businesses across the country.

Danske Bank plans

Furthermore, the Danish bank has established a new commercial leadership team (CLT) comprising of 12 leaders in the business.

Its new simplified structure will take effect from January 2021 at which time the new CLT will also be established.

In addition, Thomas Mitchell will move from his role of head of retail banking in Denmark. Trond Mellingsæter will take on this role in addition to his current role as Country Manager in Norway.

“An important part of our transformation is to drive continued improvements in our offering for and relations with our customers across markets. To support this, and to ensure that we have the customer perspective firmly integrated into our decision-making processes across our business, we are introducing two new Chief Customer Officers. I am pleased to announce that Thomas Mitchell and Trond Mellingsæter, both of whom are well known in and outside Danske Bank for their extraordinary commitment to customer service, will be leading this effort,” added Vogelzang.