Accenture UK has confirmed it is to cut 300 to 400 jobs
in the wake of the downturn in the financial services
The consulting firm
sent out an email late on Friday to thousands of potentially
affected workers, telling them that its UK division was to reduce
its headcount by between three to four per cent.
Systems integration and technology staff are likely to bear the
brunt of the redundancies. According to the email, the units where the cuts will take place are: Systems
Integration & Technology (SI&T), the Analyst Consulting
Group (ACG), and Talent & Organisational Performance (T&OP)
"where it is related to [systems integration]
In the email, Accenture blamed the cuts on "softness in the
[UK] marketplace [which] in part reflects the global economic
uncertainties that many companies are experiencing and more
specifically issues in the UK financial services market".
"Both of these had a direct impact on our systems integration
business during the fiscal year just completed," the email added.
The UK "softness" stands in contrast to parent company
Accenture's generally positive global fourth quarter results,
announced in September. Accenture UK is the London-based arm
of the corporation, which has offices in 49 countries and which
provides outsourcing and technology services.
The UK office has a
wide client base, with those in the financial services industry
including Barclays, Alliance & Leicester, European Bank, Lloyds
TSB and the London Stock Exchange.
A spokesperson for the consulting firm said that the
cuts were taking place in order to balance the skills of its
workforce against the needs of clients. "Given this, we expect a
workforce reduction of approximately 300 to 400 people in certain
skill sets where we have excess capacity," Accenture's
spokesperson said. "Managing supply and demand of our resources
remains a top priority," the spokesperson added.
The timing of the redundancies will depend on a consultation
process that is now under way, through which Accenture will
"determine which employees will be affected by this effort to
reallocate resources and rebalance skills", the spokesperson said.
The consultation process will also determine the number of IT
workers who will be included in the final tally.
Accenture's spokesperson also stressed that the cuts would not
affect the firm's service to its clients, claiming the workforce
reduction was "only in certain skill sets in which we have excess
capacity", adding: "We continue to recruit in the UK for other
skills in which we need additional capacity to meet demand."