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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A Fulfillment Story Of A Different Type From Khajuraho


Brief description of the project In June 2002, I was transferred to Khajuraho for my Independent Line Assignment. Khajuraho being an international tourist centre, the branch was catering to the needs of local population, the employees of various departments i.e. Airport Authority of India (AAI), Indian Airlines, Jet Airways, Hotel establishments, traders etc. However, the business of the entire community at Khajuraho was linked to tourist arrivals at the centre. In turn the business levels of the branch was also dependent on the income generated by the local population on account of tourist business. However, on account of 9/11 attacks in 2001 in USA, the business community, tour operators, tourists guides at Khajuraho was expecting very low level of tourists arrivals at Khajuraho. Hence, the branch was also finding it difficult to meet budgetary goals for the financial year ending 31.03.2003.

In August, 2002, we at the branch came to know that most of  the employees of Hotel Ashok (an ITDC establishment) are likely to given “Golden Handshake” by ITDC, latest by October, 2002. Although, salaries of almost all the employees of ITDC (nearly 40) was being routed through our branch, as each one of the employees was expected to receive Rs.4.50-5.00 lacs under the package, the other agencies at the centre i.e. Post Office, LIC of India, Canara Bank and Cooperative Bank were also interested to tap the business.

It dawned on me that in view of the envisaged low tourist arrivals at the centre, tapping of the above funds to meet the deposits budget is a must. I immediately convened a meeting of all the staff members (14 in all). The meeting was attended by all three officers (other than  the Branch Manager), 6 clerks, 4 subordinate staff members (including a Bank Guard and a part time employee).  It was decided in the meeting,

i.                     to form 4 teams including atleast one member from each of  the abovementioned category of staff to ensure involvement of the entire staff in the exercise and also to put to use their individual strengths.

ii.                   to extract bio data of the employees of ITDC from the account opening forms/ their office and to contact them at their place of residence individually.

iii.                  to leverage on the relationship of award and subordinate staff members ( most were locals or staying at the centre for more than 5 years) with their community to convince the customers to park their funds with SBI.

iv.                 the team members will start the customer contact programme from the very next day and will meet the customer both individually as well as with the team.

v.                   the type of products which the bank can offer and the how they were better than the products offered by the market i.e.

a.       parking the funds with the bank gives more liquidity vis a vis Post Office or LIC.

b.      Our services were better than Canara Bank

c.       Funds were more secure with us than Cooperative Bank.

d.      The customer can avail loans from the bank against the deposits or offering them as collateral security etc.

vi. Organise a tea party for the ITDC staff where we can apprise them on the benefits in parking their funds with SBI as also the loan products which the Bank can offer to them, in case they want to start some business venture.

 As decided in the meeting, a tea party was organized by the branch to apprise the ITDC employees about the various schemes of the Bank (both deposit and advances). Later, as decided earlier, our staff members contacted all the VRS optees on a regular basis and where ever individual efforts were not able to convince the customer, the entire team used to visit the customer to pacify his anxiety/queries. As a result, the Branch was able to retain almost Rs.1.60 crore out of the total funds of Rs.2 crores paid by ITDC.

Why the need for the project arose?      The project was undertaken to increase the deposit base of the Branch and also to achieve annual budgetary targets in an otherwise difficult year.                                                                                                                                                                                                     

How it was implemented and results :
(ensuring the criteria below)

i.                     Did it involve many people from the unit? What kind of teaming/ team efforts took place?

The project involved all 14 staff members posted at the Branch.

ii.                   How did it energise the people in the unit?

All the members of the staff were apprised the reasons for undertaking the project and how their contribution both as an individual as well as a team will make the difference. The staff wholeheartedly supported the endeavor and the branch was able to retain a major chunk of the VRS package extended to ITDC employees.

iii.                  What kind of collective fulfillment did it result in for the team members and customers)?

The above project gave all the team members immense self confidence as also made us realize the level of goodwill our institution has in the eyes of our customers.
iv.                 How did it enhance the interaction with the customer community?

Out regular interaction with ITDC employees spread over a period of almost 3 months, resulted in creation of trust. Later, they approached the bank for part funding small business ventures as also for seeking our advices on investment related issues. As a result of the above development, our branch members became more accessible to employees of other institutions and this lead to growth in our P-segment advances portfolio.

v.                   What were the sustainable results of this contribution project in the unit?

As a result of the above project, the team spirit continued during the entire duration of my stay at Khajuraho. The same concept of formation of teams was put into practice for recovery of dues under RBI OTS-II, as also internal house keeping. As a result of the team efforts put in by the staff, the Branch which was in existence since 1977 was awarded A+ rating under RFIA for the first time in November, 2003.

Sandeep Bhatnagar
Chief Manager,
Old Palasia Branch, Indore

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