Deutsche Bank Using Robots to Replace 18,000 Workers In Radical Restructuring Plan

November 19, 2019 Updated: November 19, 2019

Deutsche Bank will be replacing 18,000 members of staff with robots as part of its radical restructuring plan, Financial News reports.

Mark Matthews, head of operations for Deutsche’s corporate and investment bank, told the publication that the robot program, named Operations 4.0, is increasing productivity. It has enabled the bank to “redistribute capacity.”

He said that the program has also helped to save “680,000 hours of manual work.” So far, it has “used bots to process 5 million transactions in its corporate bank and perform 3.4 million checks within its investment bank.”

“It [headcount] will continue to go down; there’s no question about that. Our model is to reduce costs and, at the same time, improve our control environment and the client experience,” Matthews said.

The multinational investment bank announced in July that it would be cutting 18,000 jobs by 2022 as part of an $8.3 billion overhaul in what CEO Christian Sewing called the “most comprehensive restructuring of our bank in two decades.”

Since July’s restructuring announcement, the company has already cut 1,000 jobs, while 4,700 jobs have been terminated since the start of the year, a spokesperson for the German Bank confirmed on Monday.

In it’s October earnings report, Deutsche Bank posted $349 million in “severance and transformation-related charges,” while net revenues fell 15 percent.

Meanwhile, the bank is expected to lose more than $5 billion this year as it pays for the restructuring and has seen dwindling revenue over the past seven years, Karma reports.

The news comes amid a tough year for banks, with the total number of job cuts announced by banks in 2019 growing to nearly 60,000, Bloomberg reported in September.

According to the publication, the majority are based in Europe, where negative interest rates and a slowing economy have prompted lenders to step up cost reductions.

In July, North-eastern University President Joseph Aoun said he believes artificial intelligence will wipe out 50 percent of American jobs.

Speaking at an event hosted by the American Enterprise Institute, Aoun argued that every person needs to “master how to interact with machines” as AI develops.

Aoun has previously written extensively about the use of AI in his book, “Robot-Proof: Higher Education in the Age of Artificial Intelligence.” There he states that “students will need data literacy to manage the flow of big data, technological literacy to know how their machines work, but human literacy—the humanities, communication, and design—to function as a human being.”