In late 2016 the Isle of Man Post Office together with Social Security (SSD), successfully rolled out MiCard for collecting benefits and pensions in cash at all post offices across the network of 25 offices following an earlier pilot scheme. As well as enhancing the customer experience, it has created significant cost efficiencies for SSD and has maintained the Post Office's role in the delivery of these services.
A MiCard is a physical card received following a secure enrolment process. When presented at a local Post Office it confirms the identity of the holder and enables the Post Office staff to recall entitlements data on their till and make cash payments. MiCard removes the need to wait for traditional benefits and pensions printed vouchers and cheques to arrive in the post. Customers can immediately access their funds from the day that they are due. No personal data or money is held on the card, all access to benefit transactions is protected according to AES encryption standards.
Simon Kneen, Isle of Man Post Office Director of Innovation & Technology, said: "Currently there are more than 8,000 SSD customers enrolled with MiCard and the introduction of the service has been a key development in the Isle of Man Government’s Digital Strategy. MiCard also supports the Post Office’s digital strategy which aims to protect traditional postal services and revenue, whilst at the same time introducing new ways of keeping the post office business sustainable for the community.”
"Both ourselves and SSD are overjoyed with the success that the full roll out of MiCard has brought. This accomplishment has led Isle of Man Post Office to consider the wider opportunities for its uses with individuals, government and businesses. It is an exciting time at the Post Office as we explore the ways in which the card can be developed and utilised in the future.”
Extending the Post Office service will mean customers can use their MiCard to securely access multiple services, choosing how and when they share their personal details digitally to utilise services. The potential uses are very broad. It could be used to supersede other government cards, replace paper based services, as proof of identity for banks, utility companies, loyalty schemes and when accessing clubs to name a few.
The more services that take advantage of MiCard the greater the benefit for the customer. MiCard would save time and effort in holding and maintaining multiple cards. It would allow customers to update their personal information once so it can be cascaded to the service providers they are associated with, ensuring details like their address are updated automatically. Government departments, retailers and other services providers will benefit from lower operating costs associated with creating their own cards and maintaining customer data by using the specialist Post Office services.
To add to this, Isle of Man Post Office is also exploring options to augment the physical card with mobile phone technology, so providing customer choice as to how to assert their identity to access these services.
To find out more about MiCard’s current proposition visit www.iompost.com.