Financial Inclusion in Action

Read, Share, and Discuss

Have the Portfolio Diversification Strategies of Kenyan Microfinance Banks Failed?

Header3c

Since the enactment of the Microfinance Act 2006 in May 2008, there have been marked changes observed in the microfinance industry in Kenya. Over this period, the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) has progressively licensed 13  microfinance institutions to operate as microfinance banks (MFBs). Consequently, the industry has continued to experience positive growth. Since 2012,… Continue reading

The Ebb and Flow of Customer-Centricity in Financial Inclusion Part 1 – Why Being Customer-Centric is a Supply Side Strategy

Header3c

In recent years Human Centred Design became a new focus area in the financial inclusion world.  It focused financial service providers on the design of products and services based on customer insights. Design firms became part of the technical provider fraternity, servicing financial service providers in the quest to improved inclusion. At the same time, the… Continue reading

Our Top Picks in 2015

Header3c

Disseminating knowledge to aid sectoral growth has always been a critical aspect of our work. In the year 2015, we continued to accentuate our efforts to reach out to the readers with best of our research work; evaluation of industry developments and challenges ahead. In this blog we present a collection our top viewed publications:… Continue reading

Top Blogs in Financial Inclusion – Pick your favourite

Header3c

Disseminating knowledge to aid sectoral growth has always been a critical aspect of our work. In the year 2015, we continued to accentuate our efforts to reach out to the readers with best of our research work, our evaluation of industry developments and published over 31 blogs. Here are our top viewed blogs: Over the… Continue reading

“Clients Should Be At The Centre Of Your Business” – So What’s New?

Header3c

“This may seem simple, but you need to give customers what they want, not what you think they want. And, if you do this, people will keep coming back.” – John llhan, Crazy John’s mobile phone retail chain. "Investing in quality talent, and ensuring they have the skills, training and tools that enable them to… Continue reading

Customer Service – More Than Just Smiles

Header3c

With the renewed interest in client-centricity, it seems appropriate to recall the core role of customer service in serving the low income market. In our research, MicroSave consistently sees “how I am treated by the staff (or agents) of the institution” in the top 3-4 drivers of customer choice of service provider as well as… Continue reading

Innovation Overkill: Why Product Innovation in Financial Inclusion isn’t Always the Right Move

Header3c

Amid all the renewed talk about product innovation and a client centric (or what we at MicroSave have, for over a decade now, called a “market-led”) approach to financial inclusion, I find myself wondering if we have lost sight of two key aspects: The differences between market leaders and market followers The challenges of advancing through the… Continue reading

Who Is The User In “User-Centred Design”?

Header3c

In 2000, we had completed two years of what we thought was outstanding work to understand the needs, perspectives and aspirations of the end customers for banks and microfinance institutions. It was time for MicroSave-Africa’s first mid-term review, led by industry gurus Beth Rhyne and Marguerite Robinson … and they gave us a wake-up call. They… Continue reading

What about exploring situations?

Header3c

In Finding the Right Job for Your Product, Clayton Christensen implies that customers may not use a product/service strictly for the benefit intended by those offering it; rather they are more often driven by their situation or a job they want to get done; and include the emotional elements such as fear, fatigue or frustration;… Continue reading

Financial Services That Poor People Want

Header3c

Financial institutions trying to serve the mass market rarely seem to have the time to the conduct market research necessary to identify prospective clients’ real needs and aspirations. Many rely on “bath-tub product development” – product ideas developed on the basis of the senior management team’s experience and “gut instinct”, and often rolled out without… Continue reading