Zambia: Institute of Bankers Training Strategy

Zambia: Institute of Bankers Training Strategy

FIRST was approached by the Zambia Institute of Bankers (ZIoB) in June 2005 requesting assistance in revising the syllabi of the certificate, diploma and banking and finance degree programs to bring the syllabi in line with Zambia’s banking and finance sector requirements and international best practice.

FIRST proposed that a scoping trip and training needs analysis to get a better understanding of the needs within the industry.  The consultant would then develop a training and education strategy for the ZioB.  This scoping trip would also produce detailed terms of reference for subsequent work.

The ZIoB was created by the commercial banks in 1992 to provide education and training for the banking and finance profession.  ZIoB assumed all the functions previously performed by the Lusaka Branch of the Chartered Institute of Bankers, London.  It is an autonomous professional body with its own localized examinations structure at the certificate, diploma and degree levels.  ZIoB introduced the local banking and finance certificate and diploma programmes achieving international recognition in 1997. Further, the Institute signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Copperbelt University to train Bachelor of Science graduates.

The need arose to revise the syllabus of the certificate, diploma and degree programs to be in line with the banking and finance sector requirements and international practices.  To achieve the above, the Institute needed resources to revise and develop effective systems for periodical updates of the syllabus; to review Banking and Finance human resource needs; to develop up to date continuous professional development programs (CPDs) and to produce study manuals and text books.

Lessons learned:

  • International experience in Training Needs Analysis (TNA) and developing a training and education strategy proved invaluable and it helped prioritize the activities envisaged for the follow on project. For example, one of the most important results of the TNA was that ZIBFS syllabi did not respond fully to the requirements of the banking and finance sector in Zambia and fell short of international best practices in terms of study materials and textbook availability. This was a syllabus that has recently been revised in 2005/6 under the auspices of the Copperbelt University.
  • The lack of course materials and textbooks was the weakness most cited by interviewees from banks, insurance companies, and academic institutions. Indeed, most of the authorized institutions participating in the certification program produced their own study materials from a variety of sources such as ACCA, CIMA and BPP Professional Education, among others.  This resulted in non-uniform learning materials across the population spectrum of students and yet they sit the same exam.


  • The Consultant's Final Report: it contains useful sections that provide a methodology which is readily applicable elsewhere –A Training Needs Analysis and a Training and Education Strategy.