VisionFund International (VFI) is the world’s largest Christian microfinance network. For more than a decade we have been improving the lives of children across the developing world, as we provide small loans and other financial services to families struggling in poverty.
As the microfinance subsidiary of World Vision, the world’s largest Christian relief, development and advocacy organisation, we work in 30+ countries through our network of affiliated microfinance institutions (MFIs) located across the globe in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. We have an outstanding loan portfolio of nearly US$ 535 million, serve over 1.2 million active borrowers and impact the lives of over 4 million children each year.
Sharing the same vision as World Vision, VFI aims to provide ‘life in all its fullness’ to children as their parents receive small loans, improve their businesses and increase in ability to care for their children as family incomes multiply.
PURPOSE OF POSITION:
This is a high impact global role ideal for a person who has the vision, energy and influencing skills to grow a new social venture incubated within the heart of one of the world’s leading NGOs.
VisionFund has established an enviable reputation as an innovator in the powerful use of insurance within microfinance. Over the last 5 years we have innovated in life, health, crop, dairy and catastrophe insurance. We now seek a business builder and leader to bring these developments into the mainstream and on to scale.
This role will establish a fully functioning insurance division across our 29 microfinance institutions, delivering insurance products and services to our 1.2 million clients. This division will lead a significant expansion in our services to the poor with resultant dramatic increases in both revenue and impact. The role will report to VisionFund’s COO. This role will be an external ambassador for VisionFund – talking with donors, MFIs and partners, and speaking at industry events, about the positive results that can be achieved through insurance.
We are looking for an experienced insurance professional who has the drive to build a business and a heart to serve the poor.
The ideal candidate will be an experienced business manager with a broad understanding of insurance products, distribution and operations, who has launched new products and services to clients. The candidate will need to bring experience of leading people and change to achieve measurable impact.
There is a lot of technical expertise within the team so although knowledge of microinsurance in a rural context is desirable it is not essential. More important will be the ability to lead the team and to influence stakeholders internally and externally, in order to grow VisionFund’s impact through insurance.
Building, leading and taking to scale the insurance division of VisionFund International:
Development of an insurance strategy, 3-year plan and annual plan
Development of partnerships, operating models and regulatory approvals to deliver the plan
Working with Finance and IT colleagues to ensure the tools are in place for financial and performance management of the division.
The role will lead a team of three regional directors and an ARDIS director together with grant-funded staff.
Integration of microinsurance with VFI operations, which have historically been focused on lending and savings:
Making the case for change to senior stakeholders and taking staff and clients along the implementation journey to make the offering of microinsurance products cost effective and efficient, leveraging the existing administrative processes in the MFIs.
Developing and then leading the implementation and integration of the design into VisionFund’s existing operations.
Microinsurance Product Development:
Analysing the needs of clients in the field. Driving analysis and design activities to a practical conclusion by gathering qualitative and quantitative data then taking input from highly technical specialists eg Professors of climatology & agricultural economics, senior insurance specialists and senior development & resilience specialists to develop solution options for MFIs.
But more importantly ensuring that this input from specialists is driven towards practical solutions that will work for VisionFund and for the poor.
Advocacy and Fundraising:
Advocating for the benefits that microinsurance products would bring to the clients of the MFIs
Support insurance and grants team in identifying, scoping, and proposing projects to donors that support the VisionFund insurance program development
Raise awareness of potential for microinsurance products within VisionFund, World Vision and their external audiences
KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS & ABILITIES:
A minimum of graduate level education preferably in business/finance/economics or international development. Ideally with post graduate or professional qualifications In Insurance or finance.
A minimum of 10 years broad experience across insurance ideally including:
Distribution, underwriting and claims processes.
Client solution and product development initiatives.
Experience of leading a business unit or team with clear growth, change and profitability targets.
Experience of successfully leading change.
Highly numerate, proficient in the use of spreadsheet models.
Track record of influencing senior leaders regarding products and business plans.
Excellent at building relationships, partnering and problem-solving, including with donors.
An experienced leader of people.
Excellent inter-personal and cross-cultural skills to influence and work collaboratively with a very diverse stakeholder group.
Experience of micro-insurance products - their development and operation.
Track record of successful project implementations.
Strong report writing skills.
Fluency in English with ability to influence in written and verbal communication in English.
Preferred Skills, Knowledge and Experience:
Membership of an insurance based professional body would be an advantage.
Postgraduate qualification in a relevant subject is preferred, or equivalent experience/knowledge gained in a work situation eg as a Micro insurance specialist or Microfinance professional.
Experience of dealing with microfinance clients.
Knowledge of French and/or Spanish would be helpful.
Track record of donor-funded project implementation.
International insurance experience including B2P, B2B & B2B2C.
The position requires ability and willingness to travel domestically and internationally up to 25% of the time.