“I Feel Fulfilled That My Suggestion Brought Succour To Candidates” – Obinna Obidiegwu
Mr. Obinna Obidiegwu, a staff of First Bank Plc., is not only a vibrant and creative individual but also an enterprising and resourceful banker. He will continue to be a reference point in JAMB for his ingenuity. When he was a staff of Ecobank, he initiated the idea of candidates sending their names (now NIN) to 55019, the Board’s USSD code, to create their profiles.
The innovation was fortuitous as the Board had been seeking a fool-proof process that would eliminate the wanton extortion of candidates and the errors emanating from registration officials having to type unfamiliar names into the system. This was the situation until a stakeholders’ meeting involving banks and other service providers where Mr Obidiegwu came up with a suggestion that candidates could be asked to send their names to a USSD code provided by the Board to create a profile through which they would be registered.
This suggestion revolutionised the registration process as candidates would be the ones to type their names thereby eliminating the incidence of wrongful spellings or arrangement of candidates’ names among other seemingly intractable problems. The Board is proud to announce that the process has not only gained global acceptability but also made it exceptionally easy to transact business with the Board.
The highly talented banker is now a Product Manager with First Bank Plc. In an interaction with JAMBulletin, Mr Obidiegwu stated that he moved to his present station as a result of his desire for career growth and an opportunity to seek great challenges and responsibilities. His words, “I decided to leave when an opportunity for career growth presented itself.” “There are opportunities to grow and develop professionally and personally here and I am maximizing it. The First Bank’s organisational culture aligns with my career goals and values. It will be a tough decision should I ever face the prospect of leaving.”
The Product Manager said, “Growing up, I enjoy fixing things and I have effectively applied that passion in solving customer friction through products and solutions created with empathy. When I am not working, you may find me cycling, playing tennis, or going on an excursion.” The graduate of Biological Sciences and an MBA holder started his banking career with rigorous months of training organized by Bank PHB.
On the “product” he initiated he said, “After listening to Prof. Oloyede as he described the challenges that candidates faced during UTME registration, I thought about introduc ing a self-ser vi ce registration process that any candidate can go through with ease. Coincidentally, I was typing a text message on my mobile phone when the idea hit me. What if the candidates send their names to JAMB via text message to create a profile? The process will eliminate the exploitation of candidates during registration, give room for the candidates to double-check their names for errors before sending them to JAMB, and create a unique code that Banks and other e-PIN vendors can use to attend to the candidates when they want to procure e-PIN and that was it”. Asked about how he felt considering how impactful his suggestion is, Mr Obidiegwu simply said, “I feel honoured by the appreciation from the Board. I also feel f u l f i l l e d k n o w i n g t h a t t h e implementation of my idea solved the problems faced by candidates and other stakeholders.”
Responding to a question on why bankers cross-carpet frequently from one bank to another, Mr Obidiegwu said, “Crosscarpeting sounds like what politicians do (laughs). I believe that ambition and career growth are among the reasons why employees, not just bankers move from one organisation to another. Everybody wants to grow in their chosen career and will likely seize any opportunity to join an organisation that is a good fit for the employees.”
Continuing, he said, “A successful banker must be Customer-friendly, have good work ethics, industry knowledge and the desire to keep learning and developing personally and professionally. He or she must have the understanding that you never stop innovating. These are some of the traits of a successful banker.” Mr Obidiegwu said he desires to aspire for a top leadership position in the industry where he can continue to add value to customers and deliver returns for shareholders.