Friday, January 06, 2012

Government Guideline for Framing New Promotion Policy

F. No. 4/11/1/2011-IR
Government of India
Ministry of Finance Department of Financial Services

Jeevan Deep Building, IIIrd Floor,
Parliament Street, New Delhi – 110 001 
Dated the December 5, 2011.

Chairman & Managing Directors of all Public Sector Banks

Subject : Guidelines for Promotions in Public Sector Banks

1. Government vide circulars No. 4/5/6/84-IR dated 23.06.1986 and 14/18.09.1987 respectively, had laid down the promotion process to be followed in Public Sector Banks. It has, however been noticed that over the years, many banks have deviated from these guidelines and have not only change the eligibility in terms of experience but have also introduced various channels of promotion other than seniority such as “Fast Track” and “Superfast Track”. This has created a large number of anomalies across banks in their promotion process which have created difficulties in addressing the issues of severe shortage of manpower at top management levels in Public Sector Banks. 

2. The Matter of revision of the guidelines has been under consideration of the Government. Draft guidelines on the subject were issued by this Department; vide letter of even number dated 21.10.2011 and 29.11.2011 for views / comments of Public Sector Banks.

3. After taking into consideration the suggestions received from Public Sector Banks in this matter, the Government, in supersession of the earlier guidelines issued in this regard, issues the following guidelines :-

i. The channel of promotion and minimum experience requirement at various levels shall be as follows :-

Scale Promotion Channel Minimum Experience requirement

(in years) Maximum permissible relaxation by Board
(in years) Minimum length of services

(in years)
I to II Normal/Seniority Channel 5 1 NA
Merit/Fast Track Channel 3 1 NA
II to III Normal/Seniority Channel 5 1 NA
Merit/Fast Track Channel 3 1 NA
III to IV Merit/Fast Track Channel 3 1 NA
IV to V Merit Channel 3 1 12
V to VI Merit Channel 3 1 15
VI to VII Merit Channel 3 1 18
ii. The cutoff date for determining eligibility as well as completed years of service will be as on the 1st of April of the financial year (April – March) in which the vacancies arise.

iii. No officer would be given the benefit of relaxation in the minimum required experience by the Board at two successive levels of promotion in Scale – III and above.

4. Promotion from Scale – I to II and II to III

i. There shall be a requirement of minimum 75% marks in APAR for each of the years of service eligible for promotion in case of promotion on merit / fast track channel.

ii. There shall be a mandatory requirement of two years continuous service in rural areas for promotion from Scale – I to II, and a total of three years in rural / semi-urban areas, including the rural service in Scale – I, for promotion from Scale – II to III. For the seniority channel, officers who have put in more than the aforesaid service in rural areas will get an advantage of further relaxation of 50% weightage in minimum experience for each additional completed year of service while assessing their eligibility as per Para 3(i) above. 

5. Promotion from Scale – IV and above

i. For promotion from Scale – III to IV and IV to V, it will be mandatory to pass an examination to test for computer literacy and computer knowledge.

ii. For being eligible for promotion to Scale – V, the candidates should have been a Branch Head for at least three years. Officers recruited for specialized cadre would be required to have field experience in a branch or as branch head. In case of officers in specialized cadres, this requirement can be complied with over the next three years, beginning with 2013-14 when experience of one year, and two years for the year 2014-15 would be necessary.

iii. For being promoted to Scale – VII, the officer should have Regional / Circle Head or must have worked, in Scale – III to V, in the Regional / Circle Office for two years.

iv. It shall be mandatory to have a Group Discussion to assess the communication, conceptual and leadership capabilities for promotion to Scale – IV and V. For this purpose, a Board consisting of outside experts and officers of the Bank should be constituted with the approval of the Board.

v. Bank shall make appropriate job rotation policy giving exposure to all verticals for officers in Scale – V and VI and get it approved from the respective Board.
vi. The interview committee for promotion to Scales – V, VI and VII should have two outside expert with domain knowledge approved by the Board of the Bank for each year.

vii. During interview for Scales – V, VI and VII, weightage should be given to the following :-

a) Whether the officer has worked in different specialized areas of the banks.
b) Whether officer has been posted to different parts of India or has been only one / few Region / Circle.
c) Whether the officer has experience of working in the field as well as working in Regional / Zonal and Head Office.
d) Whether the officer has professional qualifications and has the officer acquired additional qualifications after joining the service.

6. Banks would be free to also have system of written examination for promotion at various levels as per their Board approved policies.

7. (i) For specialist cadres, namely, forex, credit, technology, HR, wealth management, etc.. it shall be mandatory that prior to joining the main stream cadre, the officers joining these cadres should necessarily remain in that cadre for at least five completed years of service. Thereafter, the officer should gain experience of at least two years in field operations. There will be exemption from posting to rural areas for these officers.

(ii) Officers recruited in the specialized cadre would be eligible for promotion in their respective cadre as per the eligibility and experience mentioned at para 3(i) above and shall be allowed to join the main stream in the event of completion of service as mentioned in para 7(i) above. It must, however, be ensured that suitable replacements are placed in the vacancies likely to occur in specialized cadres.

(iii) Banks should ensure that before moving the officer to a field position or to main stream cadre, they develop the capacities of other officers of the bank in order to ensure proper functioning of that specialized vertical. No officer shall be moved to the main stream cadre / filed positions without ensuring this.

8. The zone of consideration for promotion should be strictly maintained at 1:3 ratio. However, in case, the required number of suitable persons is not available, the banks may enhance this to 1:4 with prior approval of the Board.

9. The guidelines shall come into force with immediate effect and shall be operationalised after adoption by the respective Boards.

This issues with the approval of Secretary (FS).

Yours faithfully,
Sd. (Vijay Malhotra)
Under Secretary to the Government of India 
Copy to :-

(a) All Government Nominee Directors for information and necessary action.
(b) Coordination. Section. For placing on circular file.
(c) Computer Cell for placing on the website of DFS under head Banking / Circulars.

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