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Project profile

HERfinance Digital Wage (HERfinance)

Project Context

Women, between the ages of 18 to 30, represent 60 to 80 percent of the workforce in light manufacturing globally, as well as 70 percent of the workforce in industrialised agriculture. Despite formalized employment, these women still face a myriad of barriers to living healthy, empowered lives, specifically due to a lack of health and financial knowledge, access to services, and control of economic decisions, as well as pervasive violence and harassment in the workplace.


Nearly two billion adults globally do not use formal financial services to save or borrow money, and women disproportionately lack access and control over financial resources. As a result of their financial exclusion, the world’s poor are often unable to break the vicious cycle of poverty.




1. Improve financial knowledge of low-income women workers along global supply chains;

2. Increase uptake of financial services and product;  

3. Partner with the private sector to demonstrate business benefits for investing in women workers in global supply chains.


Key activities

Step 1: Launch Meeting: The implementing partner will prepare for and run a one-hour launch meeting with factory senior management and financial service provider to discuss the project concept, roles and responsibilities, time commitments, and expected outcomes. The purpose of this step is to ensure buy-in from senior leadership before beginning activities. This meeting will be held on-site at the factory and if possible a brand representative and BSR staff member may also attend.


Step 2: Middle Management Engagement: After the launch meeting the implementing partner will meet with middle management and line supervisors separately to explain the program activities, share success stories, and clarify and their roles in successful implementation of the program. During this time the partner may also work with factory management to establish a HERfinance Team within the factory to manage project implementation (such as scheduling trainings, ensuring workers show up, obtaining attendance verification) and to select Peer Educators using an establish set of criteria.


Step 3: Opening Financial Accounts: Generally, the financial service provider leads this process by collecting the necessary documentation and filling out the required forms for workers to open accounts. The partner should be available to the factory and workers during the duration of the rollout to address issues that arise. While some of these can be handled during the already scheduled monthly visit, it is advisable to include at least one additional factory visit per month into the budget to support workers. Note that it can take two to three months to open accounts for a factory of 2,000 workers.


Step 4: Needs Assessment: Prior to commencing the training, the partner will conduct a financial needs assessment of the worker population in the participating factory. The needs assessment will require administering a survey 1 on 1 with fifty randomly chosen workers (male and female) in the factory. Each 1 on 1 survey can take approximately fifteen minutes to complete. BSR requires that the needs assessment be administered by one or more people that are not the trainers who will be implementing the HER Finance training. This is to reduce the chance of answer bias.


Step 5: Calculating Business-Benefit: In addition to the standard HERfinance impact metrics, the partner may need to work closely with the factory to obtain payroll data to effectively calculate the cost savings of switching from cash payroll to mobile money payroll (payroll staff time spent, insurance costs, worker productivity). This exercise can be completed during the standard needs assessment and impact survey process. BSR has already developed a tool for this and the country partner mainly needs to collect the data.


Step 6: Customize Training Collateral: Based on the results of the needs assessment, the partner will be expected to make minor modifications to the customized HERfinance curriculum developed earlier to reflect any specific needs within the factory itself. This could include the inclusion of relevant case studies, stories and diagrams as well as information on savings schemes and payroll processes specific to factory. Depending on the payroll solution chosen by the factory, there may be product specific elements added and removed from the training. The partner will be encouraged to draw upon its own training material already developed to supplement the HERfinance materials, and any training materials already offered by financial service providers in the area.


Step 7: Administer Digital Wages Training: The country partner will administer workers training on six module on financial digital wages and strengthening their financial capacity building; and in order to organize Townhall meeting and supporting salary pay day.


Step 8: Outreach: The country partner will support the Peer Educators to conduct outreach with the broader workforce population for the dissemination of financial literacy information through posters, information sessions, interactive activities, etc. The country partner will also monitor the outreach through the refresher training to encourage and support peer educators to share their knowledge with their peers. They will collect outreach data through the monitoring tools provided by BSR.


Step 9: Impact Measurement: Similar to the needs assessment, the partner will conduct exit surveys/focus group interviews based on standardized HER finance methodology in the factories to gather quantitative and qualitative data points to demonstrate impacts on workers and management. The surveys will be conducted 1 on 1. The partner will also conduct four focus group discussions and an end line factory management survey. Finally, the partner will obtain and calculate costs associated with payroll administration including payroll admin staff time, worker productivity time, and other metrics.


Step 10: Sustainability Meeting: The country partner will organize a sustainability meeting at the factory to present the impact report results and to discuss the sustainability of digitization and financial literacy training with the digitization project lead, HR and compliance teams. The country partner should also encourage and support the supplier to include digitization in their factory policy.


Step 11: Reporting and Communications: BSR will request a monthly check-in call with the chosen partner and a BSR staff member to last approximately one hour to review monthly activities, including success and challenges. In addition to the monthly calls, BSR requires the partner to provide the following reports, for which templates will be provided.



October 2019 - February 2021



5 Garment factories around in Phnom Penh 



Approximately 1 0,000 Cambodian garment factory workers.

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