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Redundancy watch 2014: DWF lays off 19 business services staff after post-merger finance integration

DWF has made 19 business services staff in its finance department redundant, the firm confirmed today (17 April), following the conclusion of a consultation which put 21 at risk last month.

Staff in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Birmingham, Leeds and Manchester were put under threat as part of the move by the firm to restructure its finance team following the integration of five legacy accounting systems, after its recent rapid succession of mergers.

At the same time, the firm announced that it would be creating ten new roles in the same department, for which interviews are ongoing.

In a statement, the UK top 25 firm said: ‘We’re doing all we can to minimise the number of people affected and we’re very grateful to those directly affected by the proposals, and their colleagues, for their continued professionalism and support.’

In a previous statement released by the firm last month, CEO and managing partner, Andrew Leaitherland (pictured) said: ‘It is with real regret for the individuals concerned that we have started a consultation about a proposed restructure of our finance team, potentially affecting up to 21 people based in our offices in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Birmingham, Leeds and Manchester.

‘This follows the integration of five legacy accounting systems over the last 18 months, which has led to a reduction in the number of people needed to run those systems, as well as continued centralisation of our finance operations so that we can deliver a more efficient and effective client service.’

Currently in 22nd position in the LB100, the firm has had almost two years of rapid expansion, including its February 2013 acquisition of the lion’s share of Cobbetts, and its merger with City insurance practice Fishburns. In November the firm posted a 57.5% increase in H1 revenues from £59.4m to £93.6m.

The firm announced yesterday that it has appointed Pinsent Masons head of financial institutions and human capital Stephen Miles to take over from managing partner Leaitherland as the chief executive officer (CEO) of its commercial services division, in a role that will see him take a senior leadership role alongside CEO of insurance Paul Berry, and Leaitherland.

Other top City firms to make recent redundancies include Ince & Co, which earlier this month confirmed that ten shipping and insurance fee-earners along with six secretarial staff have been made redundant following the conclusion of a consultation launched in February.

CMS Cameron McKenna and Dundas & Wilson placed 60 support staff roles at risk following the duo’s recently announced union in March, with 40 roles under consultation at Dundas & Wilson and around 20 jobs at risk within CMS and its third party suppliers Integreon, Initial and Xerox.