A New Work Philosophy 

In 2009, Sberbank embarked on a new project to radically change the entire ideology and philosophy behind how people work at the Bank. We called it the Sberbank Production System (SPS). The concept of the SPS is based on the philosophy of continuous improvement and ‘lean manufacturing’. Relying on this concept, we seek to achieve qualitative changes in three main areas: process optimisation, improving the management system and changing employee mindset and values. The latter objective is the most important and the most difficult, since it requires the engagement of every employee at the Bank.

In 2010, we completed the SPS roll-out phase in our retail and small business segments. Initial results were very promising, demonstrating that the system is highly effective. We paid significant attention to developing our SPS infrastructure, by creating competency centres and pilot customer service outlets. The approaches developed over the course of SPS roll-out formed the foundations for a number of major corporate projects, including the re-formatting of our branch network and the development of quality and service standards.

New Development Areas

Roll-out of the Sberbank Production System began at outlets serving individuals within our retail network. Having recorded strong results in the initial roll-out, we continued to expand the approach across the whole system. To date, the SPS has been adopted at 8,000 large offices.

As a result of SPS roll-out in the Bank’s retail segment, average customer waiting times decreased by 36% in 2010. Due to improved efficiency, there were some personnel changes, with employees whose positions were eliminated being retrained and assuming new roles as consultants, customer floor administrators and account managers. Sales of key banking products in the retail segment increased threefold and we noted an increase in customer satisfaction.

Looking at the results of 2010, we can say with confidence that the SPS has become an integral component of the Bank’s transformation process, giving us a competitive edge that will help make the Bank a truly modern organisation while bringing the quality of our customer service up to international standards. In 2011, we plan to implement the SPS in more than 15 divisions of the Central Head Office and regional banks.

We also began to roll out the SPS across other Bank divisions such as accounting, internal control and IT. In 2011, we will actively roll out the SPS in other support divisions including cash collection, administration, legal and security. All divisions in which we have begun to implement the SPS have already started to show a significant increase in labour productivity of about 20–30%. We expect similar results from the remaining divisions.

We analyse and communicate progress on the roll-out of the SPS to all of the Bank’s divisions on a regular basis. In our efforts to foster a new corporate culture, we have set up professional networks within the Bank. We run training workshops about the SPS and there are special sections on the system in Good Morning Sberbank, our daily electronic newsletter, and in My Sberbank, our corporate newspaper. Changes in employee mindset and behaviour have already begun to manifest themselves through an increase in the number of suggestions on how to improve systems and processes with the Bank. In order to collect, discuss and evaluate employee suggestions, we created a special information resource, the Ideas Exchange. Engaging employees and encouraging constructive contributions to the reorganisation and development of the Bank are among the key objectives behind the promotion of our new ideology and work culture.

The Ideas Exchange

The Ideas Exchange is an integrated platform to manage innovative employee suggestions to improve the Bank’s activities. It is now in its second year of successful operation and continues to attract large-scale involvement from our employees, demonstrating its significance and popularity. In 2010:

  • the number of users increased 15-fold, exceeding 50% of the total workforce;
  • the total number of suggestions increased 36 times;
  • over 12% of suggestions submitted were accepted for implementation;
  • the overall financial benefit from the implementation of suggestions exceeded RUB 1 billion.

The opportunity to contribute towards improving the Bank’s systems and processes is open not only to employees but also to those we work for — our customers and shareholders. To open up the suggestion forum to the public, we launched a new service on our website on December 31, 2010. The service allows users to submit suggestions on improving the Bank’s work, receive consultations, learn about the views of other participants and discuss issues of interest in the general forum.

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