Savings Mobilisation Strategies

As it has been highlighted in the previous posts in this blog, savings mobilisation is very critical if the SACCOs are to attain operational self sustainability. The SACCOs therefore have to develop a good savings mobilisation strategy. The key aspects of the SACCOs savings mobilisation strategy should include the following:
1) Increased participation of the members in the governance of their SACCOs: This will increase their trust and commitment to the institutions. This can be done by giving them an opportunity to express their concern during the General Meetings, having suggestion boxes for them to comment on the various aspects of the SACCOs’ operations. The SACCOs can also set aside a particular day on a quarterly basis during which the management, committee members and general SACCO members interact and determine the way forward for their SACCOs.
2) More sensitisation of their members on the importance of Savings: During the membership mobilisation meetings, the SACCO staff should always talk to potential new members about the importance of savings for their personal development as opposed to focusing on credit. This message should also be echoed during any meetings between the staff and members of the SACCOs. One way to enhance this is to ask some successful members to give testimonies during pre-arranged members meetings.

3) Improve on the SACCO’s financial management and reporting systems: Safety of the savings is very important in the savings mobilisation endeavours. The SACCOs should improve on the financial accountability systems. Financial information generated should regularly be shared with the members to allay any fears of their finances being misappropriated. The staff should also prudently manage their savings and be able to grant the members’ interest on their savings so as to motivate them to save more.
4) Staff training: The SACCOs staff should specifically be trained on savings mobilisation. Considering that the staff usually interact with the members in their daily execution of their activities, they can always encourage the members to safe more. This is important because if the staff are not well prepared for this task, they will fail to encourage the members to continue saving.
5) Savings products development: The SACCOs should aim to develop different savings products that are tailored to the needs of their members basing on the major economic activities undertaken in their areas of operations. Given that the major proportion of the members are engaged in agricultural activities, the SACCOs could for instance develop savings products that encourage the members to save with the objective of being supported to acquire improved seeds, irrigation equipment or value adding equipment.
6) Entrepreneurship training for the SACCO members: As the SACCOs commence their lending operation; their memberships should be trained in business management skills so that they engage in gainful Income Generating Activities (IGAs) thus increasing their disposable income which results in improved savings.

The above strategies will tremendously improve the SACCOs capacity to mobilise savings from their membership thereby accessing low-cost funds. This will be a great step towards these SACCOs becoming operational self-sufficient.

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