Usability of Digital Financial Services in the Philippines
In 2017, Grameen Foundation conducted a usability study funded by Wells Fargo to understand how the functionality of digital financial services, products and applications as perceived by low-income women affect the adoption and usage of such platforms. GF gathered 50 women constituents of partners Ahon sa Hirap, Inc., Central Visayas Information Sharing Foundation Inc., and Nationlink to conduct a usability testing of 6 DFS (digital financial services) currently available in the market. The study employed task performance tests using each platform followed by a focus group discussion to identify other nonproduct specific challenges that hinder women’s adoption of DFS platforms. The study found five such barriers:
Lack of trust in DFS combined with low levels of digital financial literacy and skills cause apprehension towards adoption.
Limited range of transactions offered by DFS platforms due to lack of relevant merchants and commercial establishments accepting mobile money discourages regular usage of DFS.
Weak and intermittent network connection in certain rural regions make DFS unreliable.
Difficulty in setting up personal mobile accounts due to strict KYC (know your customer) and registration processes hinders DFS uptake especially for those without identification documentation.
Insufficient tutorials on DFS interface and user experience is problematic for customers not used to navigating through smartphone applications.