RURAL AND community banks (RCBs) have been urged to be committed to technology so as to help them to survive the competition and become sustainable.
Executive Director of the Association of Rural Banks (ARB-Ghana), Comfort Owusu, who gave the advice when she addressed the 18th National Managers Conference for RCBs organized by the ARB Apex Bank in the Bono Region, encouraged rural banks to leverage data-driven dynamic decisions as a tool to enhance proper planning towards growth and expansion.
According to Ms Owusu, “Digitalisation has found many ways and means of accessing banking services, and this calls on us, as rural and community banks, to radically alter our perspectives and context of business in order to stay strong and maintain growth in the face of stiff competition in the banking industry.”
She also said “There is a high price to pay if we do not embrace digitisation; however, if we pursue the goal of digitalizing our operations as rural and community banks, there is much to be gained.”
Mrs. Owusu said digitization, which encompasses the designing of mobile-based products and services, will enable rural and community banks to enhance the banking experience to clients as customers could easily manage large amounts and make transactions conveniently.
She said that one concrete step to achieving digitalization would be for RCBs to partner with tech-based companies operating in the banking space.
“These fin-techs could periodically impart tech-based products and education to the management and staff of RCBs which will prepare them for the change ahead. Secondly, those tech-based products borne out of RCB’s partnership with the fin-techs should be piloted or experimented to ensure the rolling out of viable and cutting-edge products and services that is tailored to the need of clients and can stand competition.”
Furthermore, she advised rural and community banks to adopt a framework that will enable them to monitor the digitization process, including building a roadmap that will outline their digital for the short, medium and long term.