Agency look to up its digital game
In a bid to keep up-to-date with the ever-evolving digital world of today, Citizen Entrepreneurial Development Agency (CEDA) has introduced the Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD).
The platform is an outcome of the agency’s 2018-2021 strategy to improve customer experience through the use of technology.
Speaking at the USSD launch, CEDA Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Thabo Thamane said the organisation is aware of the need to expand its technology platforms, especially in the midst of Covid-19.
“As a result, the agency is implementing a suitable and relevant ICT strategy that will guide the design and implementation of critical technologies that support our current and future business model, and are responsive to today’s customer,” declared Thamane, adding the ICT strategy is aligned to CEDA’s ambition of creating a centre of excellence for Small, Medium, and Micro Enterprises (SMME) financing and development.
“The aim of the strategy is to provide relevant technology medium and platforms that sufficiently and effectively address key challenges and expectations currently experienced within CEDA,” he explained.
Thamane explained the platform is primarily for CEDA customers who need access to their business transactions “anytime and anywhere”.
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Reeling off some of the benefits of USSD, he said, “Improved customer service; convenience and user friendly; secure financial transactions making it easier to service loans hence improving loan book performance.”
Another bonus is that the platform is not restricted to smartphones, with customers able to access it from any kind on phone.
“Since no high-tech phones are required, the agency is guaranteed to reach more of its clients as not everyone owns a smartphone. These benefits are proof that USSD remains a relevant and important technology, which we are proud to bring to the CEDA customer,” maintained the CEO.
Thamane further revealed the service will be available free of charge for all CEDA clients for the first year of use.
It is expected the platform will reduce congestion and queues, which are said to have increased significantly following the launch of the revised CEDA guidelines.
CEDA has partnered with financial institutions such as First National Bank Botswana (FNBB) and mobile money providers like Orange for the delivery of the channel.