Broking giant Aon this week entered into a massive restructuring programme that will cost the company and its shareholders between £175m and £225m.

The most deeply affected areas will be the group's US and UK operations where around 3,000 staff are expected to be lost.

Chief executive Patrick Ryan said: “Now is the right time for us to exhibit leadership in leveraging our technology investments that will drive economies of scale and further enchance quality for the benefit of our clients as well as our shareholders.”

Globally, Aon plans to change its operating model but will continue leverage off its existing technology platforms.

In the UK though, the broker is close to announcing a multi-million pound outsourcing deal for its telecoms and technology infrastructure.

Aon employs around 50,000 staff worldwide. The broking giant estimates that the restructuring will create savings of between £105m and £135m each year.

Ryan said: “Our streamlined processes will free up employees to find more creative solutions and provide better client service as we embark on this new era.”

The bulk of the changes are due to be completed by the end of the first quarter of 2001, although Aon expects restructuring costs to be reflected in its balance sheet for most of next year.