QUEZON CITY, MANILA — On 20 January 2020 (MONDAY), the Microinsurance MBA Association of the Philippines (MiMAP), also known as RIMANSI, marked the start of the 3rd phase of the Citi Project. MiMAP—in partnership with Citi Foundation—conducted a Needs Assessment for Member Education and Management Information System (MIS) at the Kasagana-Ka MBA Member Center building in Quezon City, Manila.
Attended by Twenty-five (25) participants reigning from fifteen (15) different partner Microinsurance Mutual Benefit Associations (Mi-MBAs), the Needs Assessment session brought together Presidents, Managers and Senior staff to assess the relevance of the project to the current performance issues, opportunities, and initiatives of Mi-MBAs especially with respect to member growth, retention, and satisfaction. It aimed to gather management information and feedback that will guide project partner identification and appreciation of performance gaps and opportunities that may be addressed through member education strategies and mobile technology solutions.
Ms. Silvida Antiquera, MiMAP (RIMANSI) President, formally welcomed the participants to the newly established Kasagana-Ka MBA member center building and expressed her hopes that each MBA learns from each other. This was succeeded by a brief summary of the key focus area of Citi Phase I and II, as well as a short background on Citi Phase III from the Executive Director of MIMAP—Mr. Jun Jay Perez.
Mr. Camilo Casals, MiMAP (RIMANSI) Consultant, then formally started the session by explaining the purpose of the needs assessment for member education and MIS. He emphasized that the information from this session would enable MiMAP (RIMANSI) to help and design better recommendations for the Mi-MBAs.
The morning session focused on the needs assessment for member education and the afternoon session was allotted for the MIS discussion. The participants were given worksheets and there were three (3) focus group discussions conducted.
The first focus group discussion revolved on the perception of the MBA staff on what a good and a bad member is. The discussion concluded that good members are those members who have already experience in getting their benefits. Often, death of a member results to increase in membership of the MBA as the relatives and neighbors of the member appears to avail microinsurance as they see the proof that the MBA is trustworthy. Death of a member is a testimony in itself of the work of the MBAs. Likewise, members who have been with the MBAs for a long period equates to provide a more credible testimony and most of these members have influence and well-connected within the community and therefore, chances to invite people is greater.
As for the bad members, discussion showed that members who do not regularly attend meetings and are not good payers are perceived as bad, as these members posed reputational risk should they complain about the MBA because of their own misinformation. Moreover, the MBAs also emphasized that it is important for the members to be open-minded about the notion of insurance and be able to enunciate their concerns for the MBAs to offer up-to-date and better services.
For the second focus group discussion, it focused on methods and perception of a good and bad member education and training. It was concluded that a good trainer is needed for the training to be effective. Therefore, MBAs should invite experts when conducting training seminars for accurate and clearer explanation of the subject matter and use audio-visual presentation as one of the training tools. On the other hand, a bad member education would be trainings which invites participants whose level of knowledge and expertise is either above or below the intended level of the design of the trainings.
For the last focus group discussion, it focused on the financial mobile application. Seeing as not a lot of MBAs use financial mobile applications, it focused on building their ideal mobile application. It was concluded that an ideal mobile application should have a text blast mechanism, a feedback mechanism, and a fast and reliable offline database for easier premium collection.
With these activities, the members were able to interact with each other and learn from each other. As said by Ms. Carmen Aguinid of 4K MBA, “through this assessment, I’ve learned a lot especially the needs of each MBAs [and] each member. [I have also learned] the problems encountered in each association and learned how to deal with it especially [concerning] the [different] types of members.”
And as affirmed by Ms. Libertine Capangpangan from Serviamus MBA, “[the group sharing] gave me knowledge [regarding] the need to visit the branches and the members composing the centers to at least see them for updates and help regarding our MBA.” In addition to that, the importance of the MIS counterpart was also seen as she added, “I also appreciated MIS [part which] is the source of all the data needed and should be updated and enhanced… Thank you MiMAP (RIMANSI) and KMBA for giving me the opportunity [to join this workshop].”