For my last bit of time in Kenya, I get to try my hand at some different activities. One of the other interns put together an audit program, so I took a trip to one of the village branches and we conducted an audit. This wasn’t my favorite activity, because we had to be the police, and we were essentially trying to catch them in the act of…something we had yet to determine. No one is every really excited to see the auditors.
Be that as it may, it was quite interesting and informative. Almost all of the records for the branch are kept on paper, so the very methods of recordkeeping they utilize are different than one may expect.
I wish technology wasn’t such a great hurdle for Yehu. Having more access to technology would make such a big difference in the quality control of recordkeeping, it would reduce the chances of someone being able to manipulate the system, it would get the info back to the head office in a timely manner, and it would save some time for everyone across the board. The problem is that you’re dealing with people who have never developed any trust for technology. Kenya in general is still trying to catch up to us there, but especially in rural areas, you’re not going to see a lot of people who are jumping at the chance to do everything in Excel.
Change may be on the horizon for this little bank. People around here are aiming high, when it comes to technological advances. Fiber optic cables are in the final stages of being planted in Kenya, and Yehu wants to take advantage of the new and improved Internet connectivity. Hopefully we can do all the important background work (read: training) to make it happen.