RBS to introduce robo-advisers
The Royal Bank of Scotland are going to be getting rid of some humans - 550 jobs to be precise - as they aim to not only reduce costs, but also, to usher in 'robo-advisers'. RBS will be getting rid of 220 investment advice positions and 200 protection advice jobs.
This follows the eighth consecutive loss posted by the state-owned bank. This seems like something of a gamble as customers aren't guaranteed to be impressed by a lack of human staff in branches (although some with prefer it, no doubt).
So what are these robots about? Well, they'll allow customers to go online and get the answers to their questions, much like you may have seen with Nutmeg who provide online wealth management and the like. Sadly, we're not going to get actual robots in branches, which would've been great.
A spokesperson for RBS said: “We want to help as many customers as possible invest their money in the right way for them. 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."
The FCA's study - Financial Advice Market Review - thinks that this new technology is going to "play a major role in driving down costs", and there's more banks who are planning to do the same as the RBS.
Whether these robo-advisers will be able to do more than simple guidance, rather than proper advice, we'll have to wait and see.