Giant insurer IAG could cull jobs in New Zealand
Giant insurer IAG is considering sending New Zealand jobs overseas next year.
IAG owns the State, AMI and NZI brands.
Other jobs could be lost to automation, the Australian listed company said.
It was too early to say how many jobs in New Zealand and in Australia would be lost, IAG said.
Spokesman Craig Dowling said: "We've been talking to our employees for the last 12 months about how we need to be more efficient and make it easier for our customers to deal with us."
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"As part of this we have discussed how will automate and outsource some of our processes and activities," Dowling said.
IAG was working with global insurance experts who were based overseas, he said
It was too early to say what any changes might look like, he said.
"We're reviewing different areas across our business and brands to see which processes or activities could be best performed by these offshore partners."
There were no changes at this point to how customers dealt with IAG, he said.
IAG employed about 3500 people across all its New Zealand brands, .
News reports in Australia suggest IAG is looking to move some call centre jobs to Asia, where labour costs are cheaper.
Powerful forces are reshaping financial services companies like banks and insurers.
Technology is replacing jobs, which has seen bank branches closing around the country.
Insurers at the Insurance Council of New Zealand annual conference earlier this month heard about the pressures that would come on their businesses from online "insuretech" companies taking market share from traditional insurers.
Reviewing the way IAG was staffed and run was a continuous process, Dowling said.
"This is a process we will work through over a number of years as we shape our business to be more efficient and responsive to changes in our customer's needs," he said.
"Similar to the situation in Australia, it is too early to speculate on potential job losses.
Staff would be consulted throughout the process, Dowling said.
Customers with homes and businesses damaged by the Kaikoura earthquake would not be affected, he said.