The National Coalition sets guidelines for each commitment type (leadership, action, data), to ensure they are meaningful and within the scope of the CodeThese guidelines should not be weaker than the Code’s minimum expectations at the global level, described below, without consulting with the Global Coordinator. Countries and FSPs are encouraged to go beyond the minimum requirements to make the Code even more impactful on the ground. 

Commitment 1: Senior Leader to Champion Support of Women-led Businesses

By requiring senior leaders to serve as champions, the Code increases accountability and commitment to this work, as well as the visibility of women as leaders and entrepreneurs more generally. It is important to support and empower these champions in the financial sector as advocates for the Code and WMSMEs. The National Coalition decides the level of seniority required for signatories’ champions. The Coalition may also require signatories to name a more junior staff member to serve as the technical or data lead to coordinate with the National Aggregator on data reporting questions and needs. Coalition members should encourage key women to become champions in participating organizations. While it is not required to name a woman as a champion, the person selected should be passionate about empowering women’s entrepreneurship, a strong supporter of women inside and outside of their organization, and effective at driving change. 

Commitment 2: Actions to Increase WMSME lending

This commitment is the most flexible, as each institution decides the specific actions it can take to support women entrepreneurs and close financing gaps. It is also the most important, as this is where commitments can be made on activities that will most directly support and finance WMSMEs Even if signatories do not commit to increasing finance for WMSMEs up front, the activities should contribute to the ultimate goal of the Code. It is understood that at the time of signing, FSPs may only be willing to make modest commitments.  A menu of commitment options provided in Code participation guidance materials can encourage certain actions, create consistency in commitments, and facilitate peer learning and working groups. The Code’s global commitments menu, included in the Signatory Commitment letter template, can be adapted for country contexts. It includes categories of actions that Signatories indicate at the time of signing. Signatories are expected to provide more detail on these activities, including a brief description, expected outcomes, and key milestones, in the onboarding form. This list of activities can also be useful for coordination and identifying opportunities for collaboration and building reinforcing incentives among signatories.

Commitment 3: Sex-disaggregated Data to be Reported

All FSPs commit to collecting and tracking core indicators on financing provided to women-led firms. Other Code participants commit to supporting improved data collection and analysis in other ways. A Data Working Group can be established to make recommendations on the indicators and support implementation, including the National Aggregator, FSPs, and other experts. Ultimately, the National Coalition should agree on how to define terms related to WMSMEs and if the national program aims to track indicators beyond the minimum five required.