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

These new hires are separate from the 52 people already employed at its private bank and 400 people supporting the bank customers directly, amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

The move is in line with the bank’s aim to grow its business and private banking franchise, as well as support Australian businesses during the ongoing crisis.

NAB has so far approved 6,235 loans under the Federal Government’s SME Guarantee Scheme, to support its customers.

Additionally, the bank has provided more than 37,000 business loan payments deferrals to Australian businesses.

Recently, NAB also unveiled a suite of innovations which provide small businesses access to real-time sales analytics and savings on merchant transactions.

NAB group executive for business and private bank Andrew Irvine said: “Creating new jobs and bolstering our team to support small business is critical right now as we help businesses through the pandemic and then get the engine room of the economy firing again.

“This is a significant investment in new jobs and demonstrates our commitment to being the bank of choice for Australian businesses.

“We will also continue to work with customers and advocate for the reforms they need to thrive and power Australia’s economic recovery and beyond.

“We are focussed on growing our market share in the business and private banking by delivering our customers exactly what they want – simpler services and innovative digital products that will help them succeed.

“Our bankers are very active in supporting the bright spots of the economy such as agriculture where we lend A$1 in every A$3 to Australian farmers and where we have seen a surge in activity amid drought-breaking rains and higher livestock prices.”

Meanwhile, earlier this year, NAB launched an education programme named ‘Banking 101’ to re-educate its workforce and rebuild trust in the country.