SBI To Institute Work-From-Anywhere Infra, Hopes To Save Rs 1,000 Crore
People wait in line outside a State Bank of India (SBI) branch in Delhi (Photographer: Anindito Mukherjee/Bloomberg)

SBI To Institute Work-From-Anywhere Infra, Hopes To Save Rs 1,000 Crore

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India’s largest public sector lender plans to institute work-from-anywhere infra and expects to save Rs 1,000 crore from this measure, its chairman said on Tuesday.

"Following global best practices, SBI will institute work from anywhere infrastructure to facilitate work from any location...taking care of social aspects of work-life balance," Rajnish Kumar, chairman at State Bank of India, said at the lender’s annual general meeting. "The measure is expected to save Rs 1,000 crore through cost optimisation and will be a key component of our business continuity during times of Covid-19.”

As the pandemic is still playing out, FY21 will be a challenging year for the bank like any other bank or financial institution, he said. But SBI is well prepared to deal with such challenges.

According to the chairman, SBI has stepped up its monitoring of all projects under implementation and expects to tide over Covid-19 impact in the short to medium term. “Bank will maintain a constant vigil on the emerging stress and take proactive action to help our borrower customers and maintain asset quality.”

The bank has already put in place an elaborate business continuity plan. It has identified business continuity hub branches to cater to customers, in case of emergency, and business continuity plan sites have been identified to support essential backend services.

In line with opportunities created by the Atmanirbhar Bharat package for micro, small and medium enterprises, the bank has set up a financial inclusion and micro-market vertical to derive value in micro-markets, with a cost-efficient business model, he said. "Cash flow-based lending models will be used, leading to efficient financing and help lower the delinquency.”

The pandemic has brought into focus the importance of contactless, digital banking channels, Kumar said, adding that the company’s mobile banking app has already achieved sizeable growth.

"The bank will further scale up SBI YONO and has set a target of doubling registrations in the next six months and further strengthening the platform through new product offerings like end-to-end home loans, pre-approved car loan and personal gold loans,” he said.

On Tuesday, SBI shares fell 3.37% to Rs 186.10 apiece on the BSE while the benchmark Sensex shed 1.80% to end the day at 36,033.06 points.

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