Tools & Resources Illustrations and Activities for Training Loan Officers on Customers’ Rights and Responsibilities (Sahayata Micro Finance Pvt. Ltd.)

Illustrations and Activities for Training Loan Officers on Customers’ Rights and Responsibilities (Sahayata Micro Finance Pvt. Ltd.)

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In March 2011, the Smart Campaign issued a Call for Tools to the microfinance industry: “Training Staff for Ethical Behavior.” Sahayata Micro Finance Pvt. Ltd. (India) shared with the Campaign their illustrations and activities for training loan officers on customer rights and responsibilities.

As noted in Principle 4: Ethical Staff Behavior, financial service providers must foster a corporate culture that values high ethical standards among staff and ensure that safeguards are in place to prevent, detect, and correct corruption or customer mistreatment. Thorough staff training on ethical standards is required to establish such a culture, but it is also important to make sure that clients understand their rights and responsibilities as microfinance customers. Informed clients are more likely to fulfill their obligations, as well as report potential abuses by employees or other customers.

In March 2011, the Smart Campaign issued a Call for Tools to the microfinance industry: “Training Staff for Ethical Behavior.” We asked institutions to send us examples of their staff training materials on ethical behavior. Sahayata Micro Finance Pvt. Ltd. (India) shared with the Campaign their illustrations and activities for training loan officers on customer rights and responsibilities.

The “Customers’ Rights and Responsibilities Illustrations” are a series of simple pictures and texts that demonstrate five client rights and five client responsibilities, each of which are aligned with the Client Protection Principles. The sets may be used for training field staff on how to inform clients of their rights and responsibilities and also may serve as visual aids for training clients. 

The Customers’ Rights Activity is a simple, versatile tool that may be used during field staff training. Print-and-cut cards contain a one or two-sentence description of a staff member’s behavior towards clients. Trainees are asked to read the card and decide which customer right is supported or violated by the behavior described. The cards may be used to stimulate discussion among small groups of trainees, or they may be used to test trainees’ understanding of ethical behavior. The cards are easily modified to make them appropriate to specific contexts and “real life” scenarios.

The Smart Campaign encourages institutions to download and review these documents as examples for creating simple, dynamic training tools for informing staff and clients about customer rights and responsibilities.

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