Evaluate the impact of the M-PESA system on a small Kenyan business
With the ever changing environment, it is imperative for more research and technologies to be improvised to keep pace with the changes. Mobile technology is one of the areas that have witnessed massive changes with more advancements and innovations coming up.
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The most recent technology has been in the money transfer using cell phones commonly referred to as the M-PESA service. The popular mobile telephone technology has played a vital role in stabilizing economies of several countries.
Vodafone is a good example of a mobile service provider that has embraced these technologies. M-PESA service system, which is in use in Kenya, has provided drastic impacts or rather positive rewards to the country’s economic climate more so in improving the environment and status of the many small Kenyan businesses.
Kenya is one of the countries that have a developing economy. Most of its inhabitants are small-scale farmers and mostly depend on agriculture. The M-PESA system has contributed a lot to the success and self sustainability of small-scale business through its faster, affordable money transfer services.
Many of the small business people are now able to access money at a faster rate and at less cost. The small businesspeople have no access to banks. It is only but a few people who work in formal sectors who have accounts in banks. The system has gone beyond this and made these business people with little access to these banking facilities get money for development of their business hence influencing the general Kenyan economy positively.
Kenya’s good share of population depends on the informal sector with most people running their small businesses like canteens, shops and the Jua-kali sector. The accessibility and affordability of mobile phones has thus contributed to the success of this technology, which has actually received a lot of followers, majority from this informal sector based on its efficiency, effectiveness and flexibility when it comes to money transfer.
These businessmen are able to receive money from their families and business partners in different parts with just a press of a button. Therefore, the system has seen them go a milestone in mobile technology more specifically in the areas of money transfer through the M-PESA service.
The system is also secure and simple to use and therefore appropriate for business men in their operations. As a result, the small business people in Kenya have gone for it. The process of completing transactions is not complex as the operator is directed through simple-to-understand steps because the process lacks complexity.
It has been well embraced seeing improvements in the status of the businesses of various businesspersons. The system is also secure in terms of safeguarding the money of the clients. For instance, instead of risking carrying around large sums of money, the businessmen have avoided the risk by simply holding the money in the phone, as no body can tell when one has some money in his/her M-PESA account.
This also has seen cases of theft and loss of money reduced. Security is also guaranteed as the operator has to carry out the transaction using a secret code known to him/her alone. This service therefore has provided a good environment or businesspeople in Kenya to carryout their business without fear and worries.
For instance, the service has played a very important role during the recent election conflicts witnessed in the country, as it enabled the business people’s fraternity to continue their operations. It is therefore a very essential technology that has solved many problems that have been witnessed in the former business transactions when such technology was not in place.
For instance, it would have been difficult for some of the business transactions or operations to go on due to lack of money, as the parties could not get or send the money to cater for such cases hence the then evident economy crisis and availability of goods and services to customers.
The system has also facilitated the sending and exchange of money as well as buying or paying for goods or services bought. For instance, it has made the process of doing business easier, as the system comes in handy while paying bills that are associated with business like electricity and water as well as purchasing products amongst other operations.
It has therefore helped to a greater extend small businessmen in Kenya in becoming financially secure. Businessmen and women are able to use the service in running of their business smoothly. Those that reside in villages and countryside where they have little access to other alternatives of financial providers are able to use their mobile phones in accessing their money, which currently have been linked to their M-PESA accounts.
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The service has been made available to every region of the country with all people old and young accessing it and using it to manage their small businesses hence the evident improvement of the Kenyan economy. This possibility has become a reality, which has seen many small businesspeople become self sustainable further witnessing massive growth of their small enterprises owing to the availability of the M-PESA system of money transfer in Kenya.
The system has also led to creation of employment opportunities to many people especially those with low income. These employment opportunities have been generated inform of the agents who give the services to the various customers. It has therefore aided the spirit of entrepreneurship evident in the country as small business people have identified it as a business opportunity by providing the services to customers who are increasing on daily basis thereby making large profits from the deal.
The system has also had positive impact to the small business people in Kenya as it has sparked innovation and creativity in this sector of money transfer using mobile phones. These innovations have stimulated competition, which has ensured the provision of better services as each businessperson wishes to attract the largest number of customers.
A working example of these innovations comes in form of the formation of partners with the financial services institutions in providing financial services to businesspeople for instance banks, which have now introduced the M-PESA service. The small business persons with no bank accounts can now feel recognized as they are able to access banking services using the M-PESA service just like those who have bank accounts. This has stimulated the spirit of doing business in Kenya.
The M-PESA system in Kenya has also enabled people to carryout their business from any localities in the country due to ease of money transfer. For instance, a small business person staying in Mombasa, which is far south, is able to manage well his/her business in Wajir, which is far north.
This has also seen the cost of doing business reduced, as various expenses have been cut out hence allowing the business people to realize high profit margins. For instance, with M-PESA, payments of services and products delivered are not delayed encouraging the businessmen to go on with their business smoothly due to readily available capital.
It seems evident based on the milestone the Vodafone Company has done through its services of M-PESA system in Kenya. The service or rather system innovated by Vodafone has impacted positively to the population of Kenya more so the small scale businesspeople.
It has contributed a lot to economic growth through this cost effective, simple and secure mode of transferring money. The environment of doing business in Kenya has improved largely. The system has enabled a larger percentage of people to access and transfer money from one place to another.
It has therefore assisted in cutting the costs of personal traveling or wasting a lot of time seeking money transfers avenues from traditional financial institutions like banks and Sacco’s.
It is actually a milestone and innovation that is worth celebration, which requires a pat on the back. This technology has brought tangible improvements and benefits in the business fraternity in Kenya.