Sub: - PM calls for BSNL’s performance review as revenues fall-Reg. Honourable Sir,
There appeared an article in Press Trust of India (13th Nov 2009) on the subject captioned above; and elated whereby the young executives of BSNL implore as follows for the better understanding of the grounds and facts for the nose dive losses of BSNL.
AIGETOA is the association of 10000 young Graduate Engineers and Account Professional recruited after formation of BSNL. We are committed and competent to take BSNL at new zenith with proper exposure of responsibilities. Average age of our members is around 28 years and will be most affected with the present trend of revenue and profit fall of BSNL. After having long persuasions/deliberation with BSNL management months & years, it may be please recalled that our association forced to appeal to your highness in the month of August 2009 through “SAVE BSNL” campaign in which more than 10,000 young BSNL executives participated countrywide. The campaign was called off at the intervention of Thiru A. Raja Hon’ble Minister of Comm. & IT. Thousands of young executives also appealed to your office for your kind intervention in this regard. Though lengthy procedure of tendering and procurement of most needed equipments is one of the major bottleneck on the way of growth and profitability but it is not the complete part of the story as facts reveals that BSNL management is even not able to utilize the already available resources in most advantageous and proficient manner. The trend and SWOT analysis (Annexure-1) spanning over the past 8 financial years of BSNL reveals that: -
The BSNL completely lacks the contemporary Human Resource Management.
Telecom services, being technology intensive industry, requires motivated professionally qualified engineers and managers at senior and middle level management to deliver world class services in highly competitive & fastest growing telecom market viz. India.
BSNL has approximately 54000 executives (Annexure-2), and out of which only about 12000 executives (mostly recruited after formation of BSNL) are academically qualified as engineers and accounts officers. It is worth to mention that BSNL has recruited engineers and account professionals just after the formation of BSNL in the year 2000 without disclosing their executive level and further career progression. With the passage of time BSNL has formulated such policies that under qualified non executives have been promoted to executives cadre violating all the rules and guidelines of DoPT and all the professionally qualified executives are placed en-block juniors to less qualified. Now professionally qualified executives are not having proper avenues to deliver the responsibilities and requirements under competitive scenario as we are severely under-employed.
Most of the professionally qualified engineers and accounts officers are working still at the entry level even after 8-9 years. Most of the young direct recruited executives (M.Tech/BE/B Tech/CA/CS) have been placed junior to matriculates, ITI, 10+2 educated executives from the DOT era, thereby forcing them to quit BSNL or web for preparing for the civil services, engineering service and gaining experience for the private sector.
BSNL is incurring financial losses and losing market share in heavily technology driven sector such mobile, internet, network services, etc. Stagnated growth of mobile customers is the clear indicator of poor network planning, poor system maintenance and neglected customer care by the unqualified and under-qualified called Divisional Engineer, Assistant General Manager and Deputy General Manager. Latest customer feedback in the media for your kind consideration (Annexure-3: Latest Chennai Customer Copy)
In contrary to the current requirement and practice of profit making PSUs where career progression of executives are based on the qualification and performance, for past eight years BSNL encouraged only exams work culture rather than performance oriented e.g. TTA to JTO exam, JTO to SDE exam, SDE to MT exam, MT to DGM exam. So, most of the employees are busy in preparing for the exams and have no time for the customer care, business growth and profitability.
The young executives are not only deprived of their basic respect, recognition to their performance, professionalism and educational qualification but their various administrative and financial issues mandatory in nature like EPF, Gratuity, superannuation benefit, pay up-gradation and pay fitment etc are totally ignored & hence extremely de-motivated.
One side BSNL is facing dearth of qualified and competent employees and other side BSNL is highly over staffed with under qualified and incompetent employees, but nothing has been done for their optimum utilization by assigning appropriate responsibilities or to bring VRS/CRS. Employee cost to Revenue Ratio in BSNL is 35% whereas it is just 4% in AIRTEL. Outsourcing and huge recruitment is taking place almost at every level in the form of JTO/JAO, MT, DGM, instead of better utilization of internal talent and optimization of man power management.
It may be noted that many public sector like SAIL, SBI despite having huge manpower able to generate amazing profits all because of the strategies and polices are drafted as per the vision and resources of the company. The employee job designs are according to the competition whereas BSNL till date has no road map to counter the competition and full conversion of BSNL as true corporate. Employees lack job enlargement and job rotation.
Some more anomalies in respect of HR and other issues have already been submitted to BSNL board in detail with all the relevant facts and documents (Annexure-4) but of no avail.
Complete absence of employee care and understanding between employees and management:
“If we put our employee first, and if they are satisfied and they are happy, and if their aspirations are filled here, then they will do things which will be naturally making our customers extremely happy...” quoted by Shiv Nadar CEO of HCL group. This kind of approach is totally Greek & Latin to the management of BSNL. The functioning style of BSNL management is totally bureaucratic in nature and hence understanding between employees and management is totally missing and customers are not having delightful services from BSNL. Recent unilateral decision of BSNL management to recruit MT and DGM from out side ignoring similar and more qualified and experienced internal executives within BSNL has created total turbulence and resentment in every group of executives and non executives resulted silver jubilee for the court cases through out the country. Several cases have been filed by the employees against such irrational HR polices. It may be well noted that one of the BSNL order itself mentions “it is anticipated that still some more court cases will be filed” (Annexure-5). As per our estimates BSNL is the largest respondent in service matters in many courts clear indicators of poor employee job satisfaction, employer-employee relationship. It seems BSNL is in more need of judicial officers rather corporate managers.
Professional Management absence at the Board level:
BSNL is missing professional management at the board level. Government of India under your able leadership is congratulated for the land mark decision taken to revamp the national air carrier ‘AIR INDIA’. The decision to employ prominent and professionally well qualified COO in place of old brass is path-breaking in the history of public sector enterprises. It is a visionary decision and quite encouraging for the ailing public sectors enterprises like BSNL, MTNL, etc. This serves as a precedent for the top brass of the non-performing public sectors undertakings that government is proactive in the interest of the nation. But, this decision should not be restricted to AIR INDIA alone but also be extended to other ailing public sector enterprises like BSNL, MTNL, etc.
Absorption of ITS Officers:
We can rightly term this is the mother of all problems in BSNL and root cause of almost every issue in BSNL. It is pity to mention that even after 9 years of inception, the policy makers of this company are still working on deputation without any responsibility, accountability and belongingness to it. Some of ITS officers have absorbed in BSNL but they are totally ignored, facing step treatment by the BSNL board and posted on dummy post though all power and policy making post are being enjoyed by the unabsorbed ITS officers. Their every approach is towards creating different group inside the company like DOT recruited, BSNL recruited, external MT, Internal MT, External DGM etc. and pushing them in confrontation by favouring/unfavouring of some particular group for vested interest. Moreover, the continuation of unabsorbed ITS officers in BSNL on deputation is not in lines with the instructions/guiding policies of the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE), which states that the deputation of Government Servant to any public sector undertaking should be not allowed for more than 3 years.(Annexure-6 DPE order). All most all the print media including Business Outlook in it’s cover story also analyzed the same (Annexure -7: Business Outlook)
We, the young executives, are more worried about the future as we have to run a long way, and if the present scenario continues in BSNL the day is not far that it will be even hard to receive the basic salary. No wonder, BSNL is surely landing in situation similar to that of AIR INDIA, where if it happens, it will endanger Government’s initiative on e-governance, health care, primary education and public welfare particularly in rural India, where BSNL is only service provider. Instead of post-mortem, the Government of India can immediately call for similar action like that of AIR INDIA for the BSNL by employing prominent and well qualified professionals for complete revamp of the telecom giant. We also whole heartedly welcome the disinvestment of BSNL in the form of IPO or foreign strategic partnership as per GOI policies. We are also herby attaching some support letters of MPs (Annexure-8) regarding our campaigning of “SAVE BSNL” for your kind consideration.
We will be highly grateful to your honour if render us the opportunity of representing our self in person so as to provide and explain the detailed fruitful information prior to the review meeting with DOT/BSNL authorities. Yours Obediently,
Enclosures: As above.
Thiru. A Raja, Honourable Minister of Communication& IT.
Shri Sachin Pilot, Honourable Minister of State for IT.
Sh.Gurudas Kamat, Honourable Minister of State for Communication & Post.
Sh. K.M. Chandrasekhar, Cabinet Secretary, Government of India.
Sh. P.J Thomas, Secretary (Telecom), Government of India.