Employees of one of the world’s biggest banks will from now on benefit from being able to work at home for part of the week.
US financial institution JPMorgan Chase, usually listed among the top five banks in the world in terms of revenue and assets, has stated it will increase flexibility at the company permanently, in a move some analysts have said is not only because of the success of work-at-home policies during the pandemic but also because of the need to attract the best talent in the very competitive financial recruitment market.
Workers in the firm’s corporate and investment bank, which has 60,950 employees, will split their time between home and office, according to London-based Daniel Pinto, chief operating officer and co-president of the bank.
JPMorgan Chase has offices in London, Bournemouth, Edinburgh and Glasgow. Its investment bank is among the largest in the UK.
“We are going to start implementing the model that I believe will be more or less permanent, which is this rotational model,” Pinto told US business TV channel CNBC. “Depending on the type of business, you may be working one week a month from home, or two days a week from home, or two weeks a month.”
Tim Carmody, chief technology officer of US-based financial services communications firm IPC, said the hybrid approach to work was “in everybody’s game plan now, where it wasn’t before”.
He told CNBC that banks were upgrading their systems to give traders the same experience and tools whether they worked at home or in the office, leaning on vendors such as IPC.
Pinto added that social distancing requirements were also behind the move. He said buildings could safely contain only half of the people they used to. JPMorgan’s trading business was already testing the new work model, and investment bankers and other areas in the division will start soon, Pinto said.
Outside the investment bank, certain groups of workers such as branch tellers would have to continue working on-site, he added.
Pinto also aired the possibility that recovery sites maintained by large banks, essentially disaster-recovery facilities in the event of a disaster, could now be closed down because it had been proved that employees could carry out their work effectively at home. In the UK, JP Morgan maintains a back-up site in Basingstoke.
At the beginning of the coronavirus crisis, in early March, banks looked to activate recovery sites because they thought they would have to disperse their staff across several locations.
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