How Quisk modernizes the Government of Jamaica’s PATH Program

“The use of NCB Quisk will remove the overhead that the Government would have had to pay to prepare and disburse cheques. Potentially this could be savings of millions of dollars per year. It will also reduce the time required to get payments to beneficiaries and save them from having to visit an office to obtain funds. On the side of the beneficiaries, they will have immediate access to funds once passed to their NCB Quisk account”

NCB’s product development officer, mobile payments, Stephen Scale commenting on Quisk being chosen to rollout electronic payments for the PATH

Quisk is slowly gaining traction in Jamaica as Mobile Money slowly takes hold.

In December of 2016, NCB (National Commercial Bank) was chosen to rollout electronic payments for the PATH (Programme of Advancement Through Health and Education) program in January 2016.

PATH is a conditional cash transfer programme funded by the Government of Jamaica and the World Bank. It’s aimed at delivering benefits by way of cash grants to needy parents who have their children going to High School.

Currently, PATH beneficiaries are paid by a combination of cheques and debit cards. The Government of Jamaica is seeking to improve efficiencies using mobile money which should make beneficiaries more able to retrieve and spend their PATH money.

The potential saving for the GOJ are huge, as they no longer have to write cheques. Also, it reduces the time take to disburse money and the Quisk platform even allows micropayments as predicted in Quisk heralds e-commerce Micro-Transactions for Jamaican Entrepreneurs.

So says NCB’s product development officer, mobile payments, Stephen Scale, quote: “NCB Quisk mobile money resides on a flexible, service-oriented architecture platform. This allows NCB Quisk to support a wide range of transaction types. Currently, NCB Quisk can be used for point-of-sale purchases, cash-in and cash-out, person-to-person transfers and bulk funding such as what is being done with PATH”.

So what are the benefits to Student on PATH?

Quisk and PATH – A Match made in Mobile Money Micro-Transactions Heaven in Jamaica

For one, you can use your smartphone to make withdrawals at any 250 ABMs.

Student will also find that they can spend cash at any of the 10,000 merchant point- of-sale terminals that will be Quisk-enabled to quote Stephen Scale: “NCB has a network of 250 ABMs. NCB also has well over 10,000 merchant point- of-sale terminals which, over the next few months, will be equipped to accept Quisk payments”.

Parents still have the option to withdraw from any of NCB’s ABM (Automated banking Machines) to quote Stephen Scale: “Customers will be instantly notified by SMS the moment they receive payments directly to their mobile account. Thereafter, they can start doing transactions such as general purchases at participating NCB merchants, transfers to dependents and other account holders, and very soon bill payment, and much more”.

They too, will discover they can conduct their business without carrying cash, with the option to withdraw akin to a Debit Card using your smartphone, so long as the Telecom Provider’s Network is up and running, to quote Stephen Scale: “The customer can safely conduct transactions, without walking with cash, or even without the mobile phone at NCB point- of-sale terminals. They also have 24/7 accessibility to NCB’s ABM network for not only withdrawals”.

So far I haven’t seen Quisk in action at any school. But expect huge changes in the coming months as Quisk catch on with PATH beneficiaries……and the rest of Jamaica.

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Lindsworth is a Radio Frequency and Generator Maintenance Technician who has a knack for writing about his work, which is in the Telecoms Engineering Field. An inspired writer on themes as diverse as Autonomous Ants simulations, Power from Lightning and the current Tablet Wars.