ICICI Bank rolls out the red carpet for female employees, launches a work from home initiative

ICICI Bank rolls out the red carpet for female employees, launches a work from home initiative

ICICI Bank made all its female employees happy this Women's Day by announcing a work from home initiative titled [email protected]

A day before the female employees of ICICI Bank were to celebrate International Women's Day, they received a rather pleasant surprise. The bank's management on Monday, announced a work from home initiative, smartly titled—[email protected]

Benefits of the initiative

The purpose of the initiative is to refrain women from dropping out of its workforce due to personal reasons. It provides the following features to the female employees:

  • Under this provision, 21,000 female employees have been given the opportunity to work from home for over an year.
  • This time (one year) can be extended, if employees apply for an extension.
  • They are also allowed to bring their children (below the age of three) and caregivers to overnight business trips.
  • A three-level security protocol will ensure that only the concerned employee is able to access the system. The bank has designed a unique facial recognition technology. This will ensure that no outsider can impersonate the employee and get access to its applications. A press release by the bank stated that this technology has been developed along with Indian Institute of Technology- Delhi.
  • Employees can avail of this benefit for up to one year and thereafter apply for extension, if needed.

The move came two years after ICICI conducted a survey within the female employees of the bank, and found that nearly two-thirds of them were quitting owing to childcare responsibilities and long travel.

Work from home

Under this programme, which was launched internally a few weeks back, employees will carry out multiple tasks:

  • Checking of bank documents for disbursement of loans
  • Image-based verification of cheques for clearance
  • First level scrutiny of documents for opening accounts
  • Processing of export-import documents (for payments)

Speaking on the occasion, the release quoted Chanda Kochhar, MD and CEO, ICICI Bank. "Although women form 48 percent of the population in our country, their representation in the workforce is much lower than men. Many women who join the workforce are sometimes forced to take a break or even leave their jobs, due to various life stage needs like maternity and child care."

She also added that lack of a support system due to predominance of nuclear families, inadequate infrastructural facilities like crèches and long commute time further accentuates the problem. "To ensure that the working women do not leave the workforce, there is a strong need for a robust support system, both at home and at work," says Kochhar in the release.

TheIndusparent spoke to HR professionals about this announcement and they responded positively to the news. Piyush Govil, head, HR and Communications, ABES Engineering College, Ghaziabad, says, "This is a wonderful step, it will further enhance productivity for an organisation. When a woman goes out to work, she has family wellness at the back of her mind. Work from home will take away such worries and help them devote time with ease. Also 'no travel' will help them utilise their time more efficiently."

Twittervese responds to the announcement
Many in the Twitter world responded positively to the news, lauding the initiative as a 'welcome change.' Here are some of the reactions.

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Written by

Deepshikha Punj

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