Mr RC Sharma, chief general manager, SBI told The Financial Express that the NIBM study would look into the existing staff pattern and would help the bank to rationalise its workforce to enhance productivity. The study would identify both strengths and weakness of the bank in relation to manpower after the first round of Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS) effected by the bank. It would also identify excess manpower in the bank and recommend steps to be taken to rationalise the workforce.
The redundant staff would be deployed in areas where there are vacancies following the VRS. Besides, the service of the excess staff would also be used for boosting up the business of the subsidiaries of the bank. “After the first round of VRS, there are certain areas which needs to be strengthened for better effective management and better customer service. The excess manpower will be deployed in those areas. We can also use their services for cross-selling products of our subsidiaries thereby improving their business. The bank is already into cross-selling products of subsidiaries in a small way”, Mr Sharma said.
However, he said SBI is not contemplating a fresh round of VRS in the current fiscal. “We may have to go for another round of VRS when our technology machine is completed. Currently, the rate of computerisation of our branches is low,” he added.
He said SBI is also in the process of formulating a new hiring strategy since the BSRB has been wound up. The bank would either set up an internal department for the purpose or set up its own recruitment board, he added. For the past ten years SBI has not gone for massive recruitment other than for technical hands and the average age level of the staff is around 30. “Our idea is to remain young in the long run”, Mr Sharma added. SBI with over 9,000 branches spread across the country, shed 21,329 employees last year through a VRS. Of this, 7,158 were officers, 11,314 clerks and the rest were subordinate staff.