Microfinance officers are usually hired in non-government organizations, where their main duty is to support a microfinance project.
A microfinance officer reports to the director of the project, making sure that all logistics of the program or project are properly coordinated.
Since microfinance is a concept that is based on assisting individuals or small organizations in managing their work when they have financial limitations, it is important for microfinance officers to be exceptionally good at communicating with people from different walks of life.
At times, microfinance officers work on projects such as early recovery from large-scale disasters (fire, floods, or earthquakes). In order to work as a microfinance officer, you need to possess exceptional mentoring skills, sound leadership qualities, and the ability to understand and execute administrative support appropriately.
A degree in business or developmental studies can work wonders for your candidature, and if you have worked with NGOs before, you may be considered a good option to hire as well.
Depending on where a microfinance project is based, you may be required to know a language other than English.
In addition to this, you will need to be insightful and analytic, and be able to handle research work with excellence.
Some of the main duties that are entrusted to a microfinance officer are provided in the list below:
Microfinance Officer Duties and Responsibilities
• Comprehend the scope and mission of each assigned microfinance project before initializing activities to support it.
• Conduct market surveys in desired areas and compile facts and figures in appropriate reports.
• Develop metrics for awareness creation and mobilization of the project and ensure that correlating activities are carried out.
• Choose staff members to handle microfinance project activities and monitor and supervise them on a constant basis.
• Conduct regular internal audits and review and consolidate accounting books.
• Handle the overall coordination, management, and implementation of the microfinance and cooperative development components of each project.
• Monitor the status of each project, including affected communities and their access to revolving funds and microloans.
• Support the development and usage of microfinance services in designated areas, identified by the project scope.
• Identify and implement partners, their capacity building, and training needs as they correlate with microfinance.
• Disburse loans to identified communities in a time-efficient manner and ensure that loan payments are made timely as well.
• Implement mechanisms for managing arrears to ensure a healthy relationship at all times.
• Create and submit periodic reports to communicate project status to the management and financers.