A MAJORITY of the top 15 listed PSUs by market capitalisation continued to witness a shrinking of their headcount, an analysis of the annual reports, including for the latest financial year 2021-22 (FY 22), showed. This trend was seen across sectors from banking and manufacturing to energy and minerals.
Barring, SBI Life Insurance and IRCTC, which reported an expansion in headcount during FY 22, and LIC, which has not yet reported its numbers for the year-ended March 31, 2022, all companies in the list have been reporting a decline in the number of employees for the past several years.
The Indian Express had reported Monday that eight out of top 10 private companies by market capitalisation had added over 3 lakh to their human resource during 2021-22. Within the private sector, the year witnessed maximum hiring in services — particularly retail, IT services and banking — as companies tapped into Tier-2, Tier-3 and Tier-4 cities for manpower. The companies included Reliance Industries Ltd, Infosys and TCS, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank and Bajaj Finance, and Maruti Suzuki Ltd.
India’s largest bank SBI last witnessed an increase in the number of its employees in 2017-18, when it added 71,000 employees following the merger of its five associate banks and Bharatiya Mahila Bank during the year. Even prior to that, the bank was witnessing a steady decline in staff strength. SBI’s subsidiary SBI Cards and Payments too saw a decline over the last three years to 3,774 people on its rolls as of March 31, 2022, compared to 3,967 as of March 31, 2020.
Bank of Baroda has been witnessing a reduction in its employee headcount for the last two years, after witnessing a bump on account of amalgamation of Dena Bank and Vijaya Bank with effect from April 1, 2019. The bank had 79,806 people on its rolls as of March 31, 2022, down from 84,283 employees as of March 31, 2020.
Coal India Ltd employee strength dropped from 2.48 lakh as on March 31, 2022, compared with 3.83 lakh eleven years ago in 2010-11. Power generation major NTPC had also last reported an increase in its number of employees a decade ago. At the end of 2011-12, NTPC had 25,511 employees and since then, its numbers have fallen consistently to 17,474 as of March 31 this year.
Upstream oil company ONGC, which had 27,165 employees as of March-end this year, last recruited in 2015-16. It had 33,927 people on its rolls at the end of March 2016. Privatisation-bound Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) has also reported a steady decline in the number of employees since 2013-14. At the end of 2013-14, BPCL reported 13,214 employees — one person more than it had as of March 31, 2012 — and has witnessed a fall to 8,594 as of March 31, 2022.
GAIL India saw a net addition to its headcount five years back in 2016-17, when it reported 22,604 employees. It has since witnessed a fall to 17,828 people as of March 31, 2022. India’s biggest state-owned oil marketing company Indian Oil has been witnessing a decline in employee numbers since 2018-19. It had 31,254 employees at the end of 2021-22, compared with 33,498 at the end of 2018-19.
Ticketing platform IRCTC, which had 1,971 people on its rolls as of March 31 this year, saw a decline in 2020-21 to 1,417 from 1,446 employees in 2019-20. SBI Life Insurance has also been seeing a consistent rise in headcount over the past several years to 18,515 people as of March 31, 2022 from 13,207 as of March 31, 2018.