The strategic plan up to 2023 – Local projects and initiatives for the Regional Self-Development of Honduras (PILARH OPDF) – envisages the digitization of procedures within the institution. As a result, it called a tender (ADA – REDCAMIF) for a Digital Transformation system that would be easy to implement called “Quick Wins”. These initiatives allow microfinance institutions to digitize their operating processes, develop their businesses and new production with the aim of improving their customers’ experience.
The PILARH OPDF project, already up and running, consisted of the development and implementation of a mobile app called “APP” for the management of microcredits of clients. APP has a number of functions and benefits, both for the advisers of the institution and for their clients.
The app functions end-to-end, is designed to administer the financial activity of the institution and covers the processing needs of a centralised system for the central office, branches or agencies. It also has functions specifically aimed at clients and products.
Despite the short implementation timescale in the field, the results obtained in 2021 (when the pilot programme to adapt APP was carried out) show a general improvement in productivity and response times to clients. The institution expects that 100% of its personnel will use the app by the end of 2022.
Functions of the application
- Input and update of client information in the field, both online and offline
- Performance of the credit process, from the initial request to payment, achieving greater agility in the administrative steps
- Better route planning: the app assigns routes to advisers so that they can visit clients efficiently
- Better management of money collection: the app is equipped to carry out consultations on loans, showing basic and financial information of clients
- Storage of GPS coordinates of clients’ homes and businesses
- Document and image capture, as back-up for creditworthiness assessment.
Benefits since its implementation
- Convenient for clients, as it is no longer necessary to travel to the institution’s offices to carry out administrative procedures. This reduces the risk of situations of insecurity while reducing travel expenses at the same time
- Greater agility: the average time for disbursement went from 5 days in June 2021 to one day in March 2022
- Greater weekly productivity per adviser, from 4 credits in June 2021 to 12 in March 2022
- Significant increase in requests for credit received: 286% between September 2021 and March 2022
- High percentage of effectiveness: 53% of credit requests become paid-out credits.
In 2020-2021 eighteen microfinance institutions in Central America and the Dominican Republic have received support in the implementation of a range of technological tools that directly affect the clients of these institutions. Through these projects the microfinance institutions have widened their reach to cover more clients while offering higher-quality services and improving their clients’ experience.