Staff numbers in six major commercial banks in China have shrunk by 35,000 in total in the first half of 2019, according to the banks�?semiannual reports. The decreased need for staff members is largely due to the increasing presence of robotics in the banking industry. Positions that are traditionally filled by human staff, including front-line jobs such as bank tellers, are gradually being replaced by robots and automation, according to a report by nbd.com.

According to the report, as of the end of June compared to the same period last year, staff numbers in the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) reduced by 10,146; the Agricultural Bank of China reduced its numbers by 9,237; Bank of China (BOC) shrunk by 4,296; China Construction Bank (CCB) decreased by 5,567; Bank of Communications decreased 3,117 and Postal Savings Bank by 2,494.

Along with the decreased number of staff, the number of physical bank branches has also been dropping. As of the end of June, the number of banking outlets in the aforementioned six banks has dropped a combined 277, according to the report.

However, in some emerging areas in banking, positions are still to be filled. According to the report by nbd.com, there is still a deficit in people with analytical, strategy and cyber skills. Traditional commercial banks, including China Construction Bank, ICBC, CCB and BOC, have introduced fin-tech companies with a large demand for people with related skills.


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