Branch Transformation Strategies and Competitive Advantage of Commercial Banks in Ongata Rongai Town Kaijado County, Kenya
Kandagor, Chepkwony Daniel
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Significant transformations in both developing and developed economies have happened in the banking sector over the last twenty years. These transformation initiatives in the banking industry are meant to optimize, modernize and reimage the bank through the application of transformation strategies to create competitive advantage for commercial banks. The bank branch is considered as the main tool for accessing customers, increasing market share, attracting new customers, and gaining competitive advantage. Due to the high level of competition in the banking sector in Kenya, banks have been forced to introduce transformative strategies at the branch level. The aim of these transformative strategies is to create loyalty, customer and stakeholder satisfaction and increase market share for competitive advantage. Therefore, branch transformation strategy stresses the application of incremental, disruptive and fundamental changes aimed at reimaging, optimization and modernizing of the branch network through strategic customer centricity, strategic staffing, innovation and operational excellence in order to gain competitive advantages. This research study aimed to determine the effect of the branch transformative strategies on the competitive advantages of commercial banks in Ongata Rongai Town, Kenya. The specific objectives of this study included determining the relationship between customer-centric, innovation, strategic staffing, operational excellence strategies and competitive advantage. The study was anchored on the Resource-Based View Theory, Michael Porter’s Generic Strategies Model, and Lean Six-Sigma Model. The study adopted the descriptive research design. The population consisted of all the seventeen commercial banks operating in Ongata Rongai Town, Kenya. The study used census. The respondents were fifty-one top managers working at the seventeen commercial banks in Ongata Rongai Town, Kenya. The study used primary qualitative data. The data was collected using questionnaires. The data collected was evaluated using ANOVA. The study established that customer-centric, innovation, and operational excellence strategies had a positive and statistically significant effect on the competitive advantage of the seventeen commercial banks operating in Ongata Rongai Town, Kenya. Strategic staffing was found to have a positive but statistically insignificant effect on competitive advantages. The study recommended that commercial banks enhance the use of customer-centric, innovation, and operational excellence strategies as this will lead to increased competitiveness. The study further recommends that commercial banks should review their strategic staffing framework to make it more effective.