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Punjab National Bank – A million on Facebook & 2 lakh on Twitter

Punjab National Bank has extensively and judiciously used both technology and language skills to serve and engage customers:

Shikha Sharma is a professional banker with over 37 years of spectacular experience in banking and is currently General Manager and Chief Learning Officer heading the Learning & Knowledge Management Centre at Punjab National Bank, India’s second-largest public sector bank with over Rs 18 lakh crore business and over 1,00,000 employees. More than 35% of the staff of the bank have been trained under her leadership this financial year and 25% more are expected to be trained in the coming quarter. She holds a Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Education degree and is a Certified Associate of Indian Institute of Bankers (CAIIB). She is also a member of the Governing Board of the National Institute of Banking Studies & Corporate Management, Noida.

Punjab National Bank created a portal for its employees in 2006 which was termed as the Knowledge Center, where all the employees were provided access to the information related to them like their performance, attendance, promotions, examinations, payrolls and other important circulars. Employees can also check the reasons for deductions and manage almost everything through this portal.


“A customer is the most important visitor on our premises. He is not dependent on us; we are. He is not an interruption in our work; he is the purpose of it.” This is how Mahatma Gandhi characterized the quintessential approach to customer service and engagement and it is equally applicable to the banking sector. Shikha Sharma says that being one of the leaders in banking with a history of 127 years and customer base of 180 million plus, Punjab National Bank has undergone digital transformation with a congenial digital system integration, unified digital environment, real-time visibility, enhanced security features and increased productivity.

Coming from an organization that prides itself in gender diversity and many other merits like having women in all key departments like customer service, IT division and the top management, Shikha says there are two key necessities in banking – ease of banking services and customer-friendly bouquet of financial products. “We at the bank have extensively and rather judiciously used both the technology and language skills to serve and engage customers across the country including remote areas.”


PNB ONE is the mobile banking app that is now available in both English and Hindi. Shikha claims that the app is one of the most successful and easy-to-use application that provides entire banking on one’s palm. “PNB ONE has seen a huge acceptance among customers due to its simple operational aspects and great navigational qualities,” she says.


The bank has enabled customers to have technological engagement with the bank through e-lobbies where they can walk in and perform transactions like cash withdrawals through an ATM, cash deposit through cash deposit machines, passbook printing, cheque drop etc. The bank has also equipped its ATMs and SMS services to interact with customers in nine regional languages, apart from English and Hindi. Shikha says this helps in making these channels friendly and comfortable to the users. Also, the call centers provide 24×7 services to customers in a language of their choice. The bank also has a chatbot, PIHU, which is well accepted.


Shikha says the Facebook page of the bank is accessed by nearly 10 lakh people, while the bank’s Twitter handle is followed by about 2 lakh people for constant updates and offers. The best-in-class e-services like PNB One app and PIHU chatbot are very well accepted.


The digital transformation, which the bank undertook over the years, has not only consolidated the bank’s presence in far-flung locations but also helped in its financial inclusion efforts. The bank has won various awards and accolades for its new initiatives. It has been improving operating efficiency across key financial and productivity metrics. Shikha explains: “Our relentless effort over the years to match the top-notch digital transformation has helped us to meet customer expectations, which has been accentuated by the recent global pandemic.”

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