SBI cuts staff base by 10,500 in April-Sept; 5,000 to re­tire by March

Financial Chronicle - - PLAN, POLICY -

THE coun­try’s largest lender State Bank of In­dia (SBI) has re­duced its em­ployee base by 10,584 in the 6 months pe­riod ended Septem­ber af­ter its merger in April. It is fur­ther ex­pected to go down by 4,876 peo­ple by the end of the year end­ing March 2018. The staff strength has come down to 2,69,219 as on Septem­ber against 2,79,803 as on March 2017.

From April 1 this year, SBI merged with its 5 as­so­ciate banks and Bharatiya Mahila Bank. The 5 as­so­ciate banks of SBI were State Bank of Bikaner & Jaipur, State Bank of Mysore, State Bank of Travancore, State Bank of Pa­tiala and State Bank of Hy­der­abad.

Banks have been work­ing con­sis­tently work­ing to cut costs. Re­cently pri­vate lender ICICI Bank too re­duced its head­count by 1,082 be­tween July and Septem­ber this year tak­ing to­tal staff strength to 83,058 as of Septem­ber 30.

SBI, which is among the top 50 banks glob­ally, fur­ther ex­pects re­tire­ments and re­de­ploy­ment of staff to im­prove pro­duc­tiv­ity.

Full-year re­tire­ments in FY18 are ex­pected to be at 15,460 and SBI ex­pects em­ployee count to fur­ther de­cline by 4,876, as it had tar­geted in Q1FY18.

How­ever, the bank has also fi­nalised hir­ing of 2,200 pro­ba­tion­ary of­fi­cers in H2FY18.

With the merger, the pub­lic sec­tor bank ab­sorbed about 70,000 em­ploy­ees from its five as­so­ciates and the Bharatiya Mahila Bank.

The bank­ing in­dus­try is un­der­go­ing a trans­for­ma­tional phase with in­creas­ing ef­fi­ciency and pro­duc­tiv­ity aided by the likes of ro­bots, chat­bots, ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence and other tech­nolo­gies that are threat­en­ing jobs in the sec­tor.

Calls made to SBI top of­fi­cials in con­nec­tion with the head­count re­duc­tion were not an­swered.

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