Influence of strategic relational capital initiatives on competitive advantage of savings and credit cooperatives in Nairobi county, Kenya
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Companies face many challenges when attempting to gain market share and maintain a competitive advantage over rivals. It can be difficult to know which strategies are worth pursuing based on a business’ position in the industry and on the competitive nature of the industry. A number of studies have been done in Kenya on resources and their impact on the competitive advantage of an organization in various public and private sectors; with limited focus on strategic relational capital initiatives in SACCOs. This study therefore investigated the influence of the strategic relational capital initiatives conceptualized as talent management initiatives, core values initiatives, customer relationship initiatives and networking initiatives on competitive advantage of savings and credit cooperatives in Nairobi County, Kenya. The study was guided by the Resource Based View, and the Relational view theories. This study employed a descriptive survey research design and collected quantitative data. According to SASRA annual report for 2018, 162 DT-SACCOs have been mandated to operate up to the year ending 2018. Out of the 162 DT-SACCOs, 42 are based in Nairobi County. Therefore the target population of this study was 252 senior management staff in the 42 SACCOs from where Yamame’s sampling formula has been used to get a sample size of 156 respondents who were selected using stratified and simple random sampling technique The questionnaires were thus administered to 156 senior management staff in the 42 SACCOs head offices using a drop and pick method where the instruments were dropped and collected later after having been completely filled by the respondents. Data analysis was computed by SPSS 24, where descriptive statistics such as frequencies, percentages and means summarized data into meaningful form, while for variable relationships, inferential analyses such as correlations, linear and multiple regressions were computed. The analyzed data was presented in the form of table and graphs. From 156 questionnaires that were dispatched for data collection, 109 questionnaires were returned completely filled, representing a response rate of 69.9% which is good for generalizability of the research findings to a wider population. Both descriptive and inferential statistics indicated that core values initiatives, networking initiatives, talent management initiatives and customer relationship initiatives significantly influence competitive advantage of SACCOs in Nairobi County. The study concluded that one, core values initiatives can significantly boost SACCOs’ competitive advantage if well implemented by all employees beginning from top management level; two, talent management initiatives though new to some SACCOs in Nairobi County can significantly boost SACCOs competitive advantaged when effectively applied to attract and retain talented and innovative employees. The study recommends that one, networking initiatives should be well-articulated within the SACCO’s policy framework so as to yield significant competitive advantage for the SACCO and two, talent management initiatives should be well implemented to attract and retain talented and innovative employees which will in the long run significantly boost SACCOs competitive advantaged and three, SACCOs should effectively utilize customer relationship initiatives to attract and retain customers so as enhance SACCO’s competitive edge in terms of building a large customer base. A similar study can be done on sustainability of strategic relational capital initiatives on SACCO’s competitive advantage.
Africa Nazarene University