HomeBusiness DigestAgribank to trim top brass

Agribank to trim top brass

Godfrey Marawanyika

THE Agricultural Development Bank (ADB) is set to retrench some of its managerial staff with effect from next month as part of a restructuring exercise.

e=”Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif”>Already, a job evaluation has been completed to refocus the bank on the development of the agricultural sector.

ADB chief executive officer Sam Malaba this week said that the restructuring exercise was also meant to improve the budgetary and financial controls of the institution.

“Retrenchment of managerial staff will be accompanied by a negotiated retrenchment package,” he said.

“However, there will be no retrenchments at non-managerial levels. In any restructuring, some staff will find themselves in smaller jobs than previously. Where people are retained on this basis, there will be no prejudice, and the principle of personal-to-holder grade will apply.”

The government transformed the then Agribank from a commercial bank to a land bank.

Previously, Agribank was known as the Agricultural Finance Corporation.

Malaba said in line with the restructuring exercise which was carried out by Lorimark Consultants, it was established that the current structure was not customer-focused at the operational level, which tended to create confusion for clients.

Some of the major findings of the consultant’s work included a waste of resources.

He said there was need for human resources to be responsive to change and internal capacity issues.

He said the current establish-ment indicated that there were 891 people employed at the bank instead of 591.

Malaba said one of the major rationales of the exercise was to ensure that there was senior representation of the bank in the southern region of the country.

“There is need to restructure some of the institutional constraints without necessarily increasing cost-effective resource utilisation,” he said.

He said one of the major merits of the new structure would be a focus on agriculture instead of doubling as an ordinary commercial bank.

“The structure will be aligned to the bank’s mandate and strategy,” he said.

“Organisational effectiveness will be achieved through creating a seamless organisation, which is flatter, built around key processes benefiting customers, especially financing farmers. The structure will result in better resource utilisation, and with a better reach to its clientele.”

He said it was difficult to point out how many managers would be affected as negotiations with the workers committee were still to start.

“As part of adopting a culture of performance, letters of appointment for management into new roles will advise that the future salary increases with effect from January 1 2005 will be based on performance,” he said.

“The performance management system will be adopted and should be implemented for all staff by the end of June 2005.”

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