The finance ministry has convened a meeting of public sector bank chiefs on Wednesday to take stock of a festering staff-shortage crisis as jobs once sought after at PSBs continue to lose their appeal leading to an HR crisis for the lenders.The ministry has also sought a monthly recruitment plan for jobs from the PSBs at the meeting as staff-shortage impact on PSB operations begins to surface on social media with appalled account holders tweeting out their grievances online.
I have applied for atm card many times but still not received
— D3vil (@45pranshu) September 20, 2022
@bankofbaroda @consumerforum_ My mother withdrew 10k using a BoB debit card. Due to some technical error in the ATM machine the cash did not come out, though the amount was debited from her account. We ended up putting an online complaint as recommended by Bob branch. (1/n)— Jaina Mehta (@jmm568) September 18, 2022
Earlier this year bankers disclosed to Moneycontrol that for every 1,000 customers there is one employee. Private banks, on the other hand, have an employee-customer ratio ranging from one in 100 to one in 600.
Despite the crisis, customers in rural areas still prefer going to branches of PSBs in their vicinity, according to a report by The Times of India.
The staff shortage comes amid a massive rise in PSB branches over a decade. Going by central bank data from March 2021, the number of branches increased 28 percent in the 10 years to 86,311 across the country. Moreover, ATMs rose from 58,193 to nearly 1.4 lakh during the period.
The total number of employees dropped from 7. 76 lakh in 2010-11 to a little over 7. 71 lakh in 2020-21.
Hiring for clerks and subordinate staff declined 26 percent as digital tools and ATMs took over a chunk of transactions that previously closed offline at the branch.
Earlier this month finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman spoke about the need for hiring front-desk employees who are fluent in the use of local languages spoken at the branch's location.