CESO VA Gerry O’ Connor (front row, center) with the participants of the Business Diagnostics Seminar

The Canadian Executive Service Organization (CESO) through its Volunteer Adviser, Mr. Gerry O’ Connor conducted a 9-day business diagnostics and assessment to nine (9) pre-identified SSF Projects in Quirino. 

On March 7, 2016 a seminar on Business Diagnotics was conducted to capacitate staff to deliver a more effective business development services to MSMEs in the province.The activity was held  at the Capitol Plaza Hotel and Restaurant, Cabarroguis, Quirino and was attended by DTI Quirino Staff, LGU based SME Counselors, and representatives from QCCI, PMSMEDC, academe and partner agencies.

On March 8-16, 2016, CESO VA conducted assessment and operations audit on selected SSF projects located in the different municipalities of the province.

Among the SSF Projects visited and assed by CESO VA were Diffun Farmers Livelihood Association, Quirino Livelihood for Everyone (Q-LIFE), Quirino Young Entrepreneurs Association (Q-Young), ABRASA Multi-Purpose Cooperative, Balagbag Livelihood Association, San Marcos Young Entrepreneurs Association, Del Pilar Women’s Club, Burgos Farmers Livelihood Association and Mapalad Multi-Purpose Cooperative. 

On March 17, 2016, an exit conference was conducted.  Mr. O’ Connor commended two SSF firms namely: the Q-LIFE for ranking #1, among almost 60 cooperatives and associations that he visited in the Philippines, for the quality of their one-year financial budgets and financial statements; and Mapalad Multi-Purpose Cooperative that surprised him for being a model cooperative operated by physically challenged people.

Some of the recommendations he raised during the exit conference to address his audit findings were 1.) establishment of a new DTI-SSF Business Advisory Consulting Services which shall provide high-quality central business advisory and consulting support to SSF organizations; 2.) integration of new service into the curriculum and on-the-job-training programs of Quirino State University to cover SSF hands-on case studies for student trainings in key areas such as marketing, finance and accounting, business planning, project management and technology utilization; 3.) establishment of a Manila-based Region 2 Trade Center or Quirino Enterprise Trade Center who will look into the brand development of SSF products, and 4.) Establishment of SSF Marketing and Distribution Service which will link the SSF products to chains of stores and supermarkets.

 

VA O ‘Connor solicited the full commitment and dedication of the SSF co-operators as well as project officers in implementing various projects and programs that will sustain the success and profitability of SMEs in Quirino.