ISSUE DATE: April 13, 2020
SUBMISSION DATE: April 27, 2020
***EXTENDED SUBMISSION DATE: May 11, 2020

SUMMARY
Women’s World Banking seeks to create a list of experienced individual consultants to participate in various activities related to financial inclusion and women’s resilience in Mexico. The selected consultant will be placed on a one-year retainer contract and will be committed according to the needs of the project.

ABOUT WOMEN’S WORLD BANKING
Women’s World Banking is the global non-profit devoted to giving more low-income women access to the financial tools and resources essential to their security and prosperity. For more than 40 years we have worked with financial institutions to show them the benefit of investing in women as clients, and as leaders. We equip these institutions to meet women’s needs through authoritative market research, leadership training, sustainable financial products, and consumer education. Headquartered in New York, Women’s World Banking works with 49 institutions in 32 countries to create access to finance on a greater scale than ever before.

ABOUT THE PROJECT
Women’s World Banking has various projects related with women´s financial inclusion and resilience in Mexico. Our work will be focused on two main areas,

  • Women’s World Banking will collaborate with organizations in Latin America to increase resilience, as well as awareness and capacity, of women entrepreneurs to use financial services, in particular loans, by using behavioral science to adapt in-person financial capability content and converting it into virtual training tailored to Mexican low-income women entrepreneurs.
  • Women’s World Banking will collaborate with a Financial Service Provider to provide an on-ramp to financial inclusion for women social commerce entrepreneurs by offering them a safe place to save and the possibility to make and receive digital payments in a frictionless manner.

These engagements involve in-depth qualitative and user testing with low-income women entrepreneurs to better understand their financial needs and aspirations, in order to increase resilience.

We are seeking consultants that can assist in virtual / online qualitative research primarily with low-income entrepreneur women, including one or more of the following activities described in more detail in the following section:

  1. Secondary research review
  2. Virtual interview logistics
  3. Development of research instruments
  4. Interview facilitation
  5. Qualitative data synthesis analysis
  6. Co-creation Workshop facilitation
  7. User testing
  8. Develop resilience content

This will be a retainer contract to last for one year, from approximately May 2020 – May 2021 with the possibility to renew.

ACTIVITIES
Online or virtual activities may include (but are not limited to):

Conduct virtual qualitative customer research to understand behavioral and operational barriers to financial health.

  1. Secondary research review
    1. Review existing literature and data on a given topic (Analysis materials)
    2. Review, analyze literature provided by our partner
    3. Synthesize available literature on a given topic in written format
  2. Virtual interviews logistics
    1. Recruitment of participants for virtual focus groups discussions and / or individual virtual interviews for the different profiles, following the criteria provided by Women´s World Banking (for example, gender, age, employment status, location, etc.)
    2. Develop a standard protocol for contacting participants and conducting remote user interviews
    3. Arrange for a convenient time and place with the participant to participate in virtual research and follow-up with everyone to ensure availability.
    4. Manage all aspects of remote participant compensation (e.g. airtime top up, etc.)
  3. Development of research instruments
    1. Draft and/or provide input on the design of qualitative interview protocols
    2. Provide input on research design and sampling strategy
    1. Generate guides for the Mexican market.
    2. Pilot the interview guide
    3. Record any modifications made to the guide
  4. Virtual Interview Facilitation
    1. Obtain informed consent from participant for each interview
    2. Conduct individual interviews with low-income entrepreneur women using a semi-structured interview guide
    3. Supervise a note taker who assists in interviews, ensuring complete notes when needed
    4. Ensure all interviews are recorded, with permission from participant
    5. Conduct participant observation when needed
    6. Use virtual card sorts or visual prompts in interviews when needed (e.g. for usability tests, contextual inquiry)
  5. Qualitative data synthesis and analysis
    1. Provide notes from all interviews
    2. Provide case studies from interesting/outlier interviews
    3. Provide summary Powerpoint slides synthesizing findings
    4. Coordinate with transcribers to provide translated, verbatim transcripts when needed
    1. Participate in regular discussions with the Women’s World Banking team to discuss emerging themes and reflect on the research approach
    2. Conduct thematic analysis of transcripts when needed

Conduct remote co-creation workshops

  1. Workshop/design facilitation
    1. Assist in facilitating interactive virtual co-creation workshops or sessions with partner institutions to share research findings and brainstorm solutions
    2. Develop visual aids or materials (slides, brochures) and interactive activities to guide the discussion
    3. Create customer personas and customer journey maps
    4. Virtual prototyping virtual tools or visual aids and channels that combines the value for a financial health and the resilience for low-income entrepreneur women.
    5. Synthesize results of discussion into written document or slides
    6. Understand the minimum value proposition (MVP) and key elements required that will generate a value proposition.

 User Testing

  1. Customer testing insights
    1. Develop financial health and resilience messaging and content prototypes that address behavioral barriers and drives desired behavior for low-income female entrepreneurs.
    2. Prototype the UX based on customers
      1. Test language, which will help clients to understand and use the financial products.
    3. Conduct remote user interviews, usability tests, contextual inquiry, and other user experience research methods to gather feedback from customers
    4. Synthesize customer feedback and make adjustments to prototypes
    5. Re-test adjustments focused on client UX

Develop resilience content

  1. Leverage digital channels to increase resilience, awareness and capacity of women entrepreneurs to use new financial services
    1. Based on Women’s World Banking experience review the effectiveness of different forms of financial services in creating resilience of low-income women micro-entrepreneurs
    2. Create and adapt virtual content on resilience around two main lines:
      1. Present: coping with the current Covid-19 shock by better budgeting and tracking spending.
      2. Future: preparing for future shocks by building resilience through financial health, particularly around savings and insurance products.
    3. Review channel effectiveness on the messages designed that will help with the strategy that help to create financial health and resilience
    4. Identify the best moments by each distribution channel to achieve the greatest impact

Research activities should begin upon contract award.

LOCATION OF WORK
Work will take place in Mexico and the consultant is expected to be based in Mexico, ideally Mexico City. During the contingency measures work will be done remotely using virtual tools and no field work or face-to-face meetings will happen until it is deemed safe by local authorities and Women’s World Banking.

 PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS

  • Experience with human-centered design of financial products focused on low-income populations
  • Experience facilitating participatory co-creation workshops and discussions, remotely and in-person
  • Experience conducting qualitative research in the sector of financial inclusion and / or services, in preference to experience in one or more of the following: loans, savings, digital payments, financial health, financial inclusion, resilience for micro-entrepreneurs, social commerce, etc.
  • Deep understanding of low-income women entrepreneurs’ financial inclusion in Mexico and Latin America.
  • Experience managing remote qualitative research activities, including remote recruitment and conducting virtual individual in-depth interviews and focus group discussions with low-income women via phone, video chat, or other medium
  • Experience managing all logistical aspects of qualitative data collection
  • Proactive communication and project management skills
  • Successful track record of meeting project deliverables within short timelines
  • In-field experience in Mexico required
  • Experience collaborating with remote colleagues across time zones
  • Fluency in Spanish
  • Ability to communicate effectively in English (verbal and written)
  • Availability to join video meetings (e.g. Skype, Teams, Zoom) with Women’s World Banking staff

TO APPLY
Please submit your application by midnight EST by April 27, 2020 May 11, 2020.

***Only Mexico-based consultants will be selected for this consultancy.***

Applications should include:

  • A cover letter, including daily fee / rate
  • Resume or CV
  • Statement of the individual consultant’s qualifications for the specific activities laid out in the RFQ (not all activities are expected to be covered by each consultant) and previous relevant experience for each activity
  • Minimum 2 references

Applications should be submitted in English

For questions about the application please send an email until May 7, 2020 to tn@womensworldbanking.org. Please include in the e-mail subject line “RFQ: Consultant for Financial Inclusion and Resilience of Low-Income Women Entrepreneurs in Mexico”

Apply Now!

This RFQ does not guarantee or commit Women’s World Banking to proceeding with the above described work. Due to overwhelming response, not all candidates will be contacted.

Women’s World Banking is an equal employment opportunity for all regardless of race, color, citizenship, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, age, disability, veteran or reservist status or any other category protected by federal, state or local law.

 Women’s World Banking will be unable to contract with any individual who is US citizen or resident without an LLC or LP or similar structure.


Q: Are you planning on hiring more than one consultant, since there are many different topics and areas of expertise to be covered?
A: Ideally it would be one consultant that can cover most of the areas of expertise covered, but we might consider hiring multiple consultants depending on the skill sets of applicants.

Q: Can we assume that at this point of time it will be difficult to specify the number of days you expect to assign to the consultant(s). Is this correct or can a specific or probable number of consulting days to be assigned be specified?
A: This is correct. For now, we cannot specify the level of effort, since it will depend on the profiles we receive and whether we hire one or multiple consultants. The level of effort will be specified after selection.

Q: Do you expect the consultant to bring in a small project team (for example interviewers, note takers, etc.)? Or will these functions be covered by your local team?
A: We expect the consultant to conduct the qualitative one on one interviews and take notes.

Q: Are the partner organizations for the project already identified or do you expect the consultant to assist in identifying the financial institution and other partner organizations for the project?
A: Partner institutions are already identified, so we do not expect the consultant to assist in identifying partners.

Q: Regarding the mentioned “logistical aspects of qualitative data collection”, do you expect the consultant to organize and pay physical space for focus group meetings, round tables, etc. or is this type of activity covered by your local team or by the partner organizations?
A:  Given the current limitations due to COVID-19, all interviews and interactions should take place virtually.

Q: In which regions of Mexico are you planning to implement the project? How much travelling do you expect the consultants to do in the country itself and possibly to New York for team meetings with Women’s World Banking staff?
A: Given the current limitations of COVID-19, all interviews and interactions should take place virtually. No travel is expected.

Q: How many interviews in the field do you expect need to be done and do you expect the consultant to do them all him/herself or is there planned to work with specific interviewers?
A: The detailed scope will be defined with the selected consultant.

Q: Clause 4 under topic “”Co-creation workshops” is not fully clear to me. I assume, this clause is focused on prototyping tools for strengthening general financial health and resilience of women entrepreneurs as well as specific COVID-19 crisis oriented resilience. Is that assumption correct?
A: Yes, that assumption is correct.

Q : Can you advise further guidance on how we should provide cost proposals?
A:  We are not expecting a quote for the full project. As mentioned in the RFQ we would need only the daily rate/fee of the consultant. The level of effort will be defined with the consultant (s) after the selection.