Factors influencing membership retention in savings and credit cooperative societies: a case of Wana-anga Savings and Credit Cooperative Society-Nairobi
Nyagengo, Christine O
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This research was undertaken to investigate and analyze factors influencing retention of SACCO members. SACCOs' have undergone turbulent times yet continue to emerge as the most acceptable organization able to bring people together with an aim of addressing socioeconomic issues. The study used data collected from a representative sample of Wana-anga SACCO members in Nairobi to establish the influence of different factors on membership of the SACCO, and to determine their effect on retention level. The study, focused on the active members who had paid up their share capital contribution (Kshs. 10,000) and were alive by the time the study was being conducted. The objectives of the study were: to find out the level to which the SACCO Act influences retention rate, to establish the marketing strategies used by the SACCO, to establish the influence of products offered by the SACCO on the retention rate and finally to establish the influence of the organizational structure of the Sacco on membership retention levels. The study incorporates individual characteristics, knowledge of the SACCO Act and confidence level in the SACCO Act's ability to sustain the SACCO through enactment of good governance. It also sought to establish marketing strategies employed as well as influences of products available in ensuring membership retention levels. Finally the study looked at the organizational structure of the Sacco and influence levels of the management team in achieving retention levels. Frequency distribution and cross tabulations were employed to describe background characteristics and associations. Chisquare statistics was used to infer the findings and thus enable generalization to the whole population under study. Findings indicate that majority of members are from the civil service and that the female gender is contributing almost as much as men in the form of shares. The SACCO Act was found to be very influential in ensuring retention of members. The members were not satisfied with the marketing strategy employed but only a fraction of them thought a marketing strategy is important in ensuring their retention in the Sacco. Interest rate charged on loans was the most popular reason why members acquired loans with the Sacco. All members were either moderately confident or not confident at all in the election process. The study recommends that SACCOs' acknowledge the importance of marketing strategies in building long term relationships, re-affirming trust and thus ensuring retention levels among their members. The management team should also try as much as possible to incorporate members' ideas in decisions being made to ensure participatory management which will also result in retention of Sacco members.
University of Nairobi, Kenya