Great-West Life will be eliminating 1,500 positions over the next two years through a combination of layoffs, a voluntary retirement program and reducing temporary positions, the company announced today.

The move works out to a 13 per cent reduction of the company’s 12,000 employees in Canada.

“These are difficult but necessary decisions that we are not taking lightly,” said Paul Mahon, president and chief executive officer at Great-West Life, in a news release. “We are committed to treating all those affected fairly and respectfully, consistent with our values.”

Read: How to help employees during a layoff

Great-West Life will record a charge of $215 million on the restructuring in the second quarter of 2017. The charge includes severance payments as well as costs related to real estate information systems changes. In the long term, Great-West Life expects to save $200 million a year on a pre-tax basis by the end of the first quarter of 2019.

Read: Smaller institutional investment firms feeling the squeeze of consolidation

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