Borrower "About" sections and photo upload now completed after activation

Discussion in 'Announcements' started by Julia Kurnia, Apr 6, 2014.

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  1. Julia Kurnia

    Julia Kurnia Director, Zidisha Zidisha Staff

    Dear all,

    New borrower applicants will now complete the "About me" text descriptions and photo upload only after their accounts are activated. They are prompted to complete these sections before the first loan application posting.

    Typing extensive text descriptions, and obtaining and uploading a quality digital photo, require a substantial investment of time and expense in areas where the necessary equipment is scarce, and many people have not had the chance to learn to type quickly.

    This was not as much of a problem previously, because an applicant who managed to complete the application form could be fairly certain of receiving a loan. However we have recently incorporated a variety of checks into our new application review process which result in many completed applications being declined which are not clearly ineligible or fraudulent, but simply because they exhibit too many factors that are correlated with high credit risk.

    These checks have improved our repayment rates, but they have also resulted in some legitimate applications being declined because they appear too risky. We have been discussing this challenge with our VMs and the borrowers who have been active in inviting others to join, and they frequently observed that the high decline rate is making applicants reluctant to invest the time in completing the application form.

    We were not willing to admit risky applicants in order to motivate more people to apply. Instead, we opted to reduce the cost of applying by moving information that does not add a great deal of value to our risk assessment out of the initial application form. Now only borrowers who know they will be allowed to raise a loan are required to invest time in completing the long text and photo upload sections of their profiles.


  2. Shehi

    Shehi Gold Member Volunteer Mentor

    This latest move will encourage more applicants especially because most borrowers depend on cybercafe (charged per minute, $1/86minutes in kenya) for online applications. As a VM, i support more checks to bust the fraudsters before they obtain loans. Only deserving applicants should compete for lenders' funds.
    Wiredfox likes this.
  3. Julia Kurnia

    Julia Kurnia Director, Zidisha Zidisha Staff

    We are indeed conducting a variety of checks that do not include the "about" section, before new accounts are activated. It is certainly legitimate for our members and supporters to be concerned about them. That said, we cannot publish these checks without undermining their usefulness. The most I can offer is the installment on-time repayment data we are publishing, which is continuing to improve thanks to improvements we are making to our credit risk controls.
    Shehi likes this.
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