A Chronicle of Enlightened Citizenship Movement in the State Bank of India

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Friday, August 20, 2010



Moran branch is a rural branch surrounded by a number of Tea Gardens. It was noticed that the employees and labourers of these Tea Gardens were not banking with SBI Moran branch. This was a great opportunity for the branch to drive the people working in these Tea Gardens for the purpose of picking up new business and also for their financial inclusion. To increase the profitability of the branch and the need to cover the untouched Tea Gardeners, the branch decided to launch ‘new account opening campaign’ in the form of ‘deposit mobilisation’.

Information gathered from staff members and initial contacts made with the Tea Gardens were not showing a favourable picture People of the area did not have good opinion about the services of the branch and were reluctant to open new accounts. The branch decided that it was time to start building up a good relationship with the Tea Garden employees and labourers and to remove their apparent fear of transacting with the branch and also to enable them to avail the services of the branch directly instead of going through middlemen/brokers, a practice which was prevalent in the area.

A branch level customer service committee meeting was held at the branch to discuss the situation. With a view to build up the branch image, the house decided to organize deposit mobilization campaign at all the Tea Gardens in the area, one after another, before March 2009. This would also help in increasing the profit of the branch and CASA deposits. Staff members got encouraged and joined hands to form a Team at the branch for the purpose. A team was formed consisting of two CRAs, one Special Assistant, one Photographer, President of Gaon Panchayat of the locality and Branch Manager as the Team Leader.

The team began its campaign on one fine chilly winter morning in December 2008 by visiting a big Tea Garden having an ‘ISO’ certification. They met the General Manager and expressed their desire to conduct a new account opening campaign amongst all their employees including casual workers. The General Manager initially not forthcoming, later on agreed to arrange for a meet on the 19th December 2008. On that day, the branch opened 556 Savings Bank accounts and 35 Recurring Deposit accounts. When the message was spread about the event, other Tea Garden Managers were also interested and invited the branch to hold similar campaign in their Tea Gardens.

This energized the staff of the branch who became enthusiastic and geared up to take up the challenge. Their reluctant attitude towards strenuous work vanished.
Due to this ‘New Account Opening Campaign’ a good relationship was built up with all the Tea Gardens. The customers were satisfied and the team members enjoyed total fulfillment because of their collective effort. The interaction with the customer
community was enhanced as all the Tea Gardens, who were earlier not keen to do business with the bank/branch, now started banking with the branch and the branch and its team got a good chance to serve the customers.

‘New Account Opening Campaign’ was a success and brought fruitful results. The branch was able to increase its profit considerably as on 31st March 2009. A total of 4500 Savings Bank Accounts were opened within 31st March 2009. The Controllers were highly satisfied and the branch got appreciation letter for their effort. Over and above, the branch gained customer’s trust and image of the bank as well as the branch improved a lot.

Shared at Citizen SBI Intervention – II programme at SBLC Jorhat (N.E.Circle).

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