As the global economy continues to buckle under the pressure and strain caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, many people will turn to alternative lending to offset the impacts. How can you be prepared to meet such demands as a Sacco or Microfinance? Here are a few suggestions:

Automate the Loan Process

Increased demand for services means that your company must be prepared to assess funding requests quickly. Now more than ever, your company will need to integrate digital technology into most, if not all, areas of your business to deliver maximum value and efficient services to clients.

Remember, the customers of tomorrow will prefer remote and digital.

Even if you have already created a way for clients to apply online, take the time to review and evaluate your systems. Ensure they facilitate a simplified and smooth borrowing process, rather than being a deterrent to potential clients.  

What is required is a technological solution with a user-friendly interface that provides a seamless experience. One in which borrowers can provide documentation and even monitor progress. This will reduce borrowers’ time and efforts.

With an advanced digital lending platform like Presta, applications can be processed faster with the aid of cloud integration that connects various relevant applications, systems, and IT environments for deeper assessment and data-driven decision making. 

In fact, when done right, some of the benefits will include: 

  • Enhanced customer engagement experience
  • Bigger competitive advantage 
  • Greater productivity
  • Better decision making
  • Increased revenues and profits

 TipUse surveys to gauge customer satisfaction levels and then address potential issues. Everyone likes to know their comments, complaints and even praises are being heard and acknowledged. By analysing and prioritising the feedback from customers, you can ensure that your business provides maximum value to your existing and potential customers. Also, in the long run, this could improve brand loyalty among your customers.

Find Opportunity & Competitive Advantage in Adversity

This pandemic has struck fear into our hearts, battered our confidence and took our security and loved ones. So it’s quite natural for consumers to change considering these unprecedented circumstances surrounding the pandemic. They are quite possibly more interested in short-term and emergency loans to provide a cushion during this difficult time. 

Consumers will likely turn to alternative lenders and, to effectively meet these demands, your business will need to adapt and update its business continuity plans. 

You can do this by tailoring loan products to meet the evolving needs of your target market in the post-COVID world. Lending in an uncertain and potentially contracting economy is instinctively a cause for concern. However, identifying clients who require urgent support will go a long way towards building client-lender loyalty, growing your community, and strengthening your company’s brand.

To highlight your commitment to helping borrowers, consider posting answers to frequently asked questions as well as streamlining relevant information about any COVID-19 related products and services.

Strengthen Data Privacy and Security Policies

As the global financial services industry responds to COVID-19, many organizations will rely more on remote operations to meet consumer demands. Access to secure, reliable and flexible systems and applications will become increasingly essential for the foreseeable future.

With many companies already on their journey of digital transformation, they should also be aware that this includes a security transformation as well, and must prioritize data privacy and data security.

This is as important as ever, especially as we see increased COVID-related scams. There are many more people using mobile devices and remote access to perform critical functions. It’s important for security teams to protect remote workforces and customers. 

Meet the challenge head-on by identifying any weak points, preparing for a potential uptick in attacks, and adapting protections for sensitive data and critical systems. Ensure that all employees, as well as consumers, are aware of those coronavirus-themed scams. 

Conduct a data protection impact assessment. Keep a register of the personal data collected by your company about your customers, how it is kept, and account for who has access to it.

You’ll want to ensure that like Presta, your digital lending platform is compliant with International and local personal data protection standards. and allows you to keep all your personal customer data safely collected and up to date.

Stay in the Loop

To be frank, while we know that life as we knew it will never return to ‘normal,’ we still have no idea when this pandemic will be over– so we all need to stay informed. 

Beware of disinformation and fake news about COVID-19 that may travel as fast as or faster than accurate information. Instead, be sure to monitor communications updates from your industry-leading associations, regulatory bodies as well as public health organizations.

Aim to keep abreast of the effects the pandemic is having on the global and local economy and of any new developments in real-time. You will be better able to effectively assess the impact on your business, as well as tailor products and services to cater to your borrowers’ needs.

While this pandemic has caused an economic downturn, as fintech alternative lenders there may be an increase in the demand for your services. Consider these suggestions in preparing to meet such demands. Get a FREE 1 Month trial of Presta digital lending software to see how it meets your needs as a #SACCO or #Microfinance