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SRA to shed 80 jobs in ABS restructuring

15 February 2011

The Solicitors Regulation Authority is to shed 80 jobs as it implements an organisational restructure in line with its new outcomes-focused approach in the run up to the introduction of ABSs in October.

The job losses will amount to a 13 per cent cut, taking the SRA’s headcount from 640 to 560.

Staff were told yesterday (14 February) that the changes were needed to reflect the redefined regulatory approach focusing on three key regulatory activities: authorisation, supervision and enforcement.

According to the SRA the move to a leaner workforce follows improvements to the regulator’s IT systems.

While the SRA said it would seek to redeploy existing staff, the decision will lead to compulsory redundancies.

Alongside the job cuts it is understood that the SRA is continuing to recruit staff with specific knowledge of the large commercial firms for its new City regulation taskforce.

Commenting on the cuts, chief executive Antony Townsend said this was “the final stage of our programme to equip the SRA to be a modern, risk-based regulator, capable of meeting the needs of consumers of legal services in a radically changing legal sector”.

He continued: “A combination of retrained staff, the targeted appointment of new staff members with new skills, and the replacement of our old and inefficient IT systems, will enable us to deliver effective and efficient regulation with a lower cost base than before, to the timetable to which we are committed.”

“The new structure will not only improve internal clarity and accountabilities, but also make it easier for those who deal with us to understand responsibilities in the organisation,” he said.

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