Updated Mar 01, 2018

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Last Mile Mobile Solutions (LMMS)


Richard Lankas

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Stage 5: Scaling

Last Mile Mobile Solutions (LMMS®) is a suite of innovative technology applications – a mobile Information Management platform for humanitarian service delivery - developed by World Vision in collaboration with other humanitarian agencies and the private sector. It is a set of mission critical capabilities for organisations delivering humanitarian services in the ‘last mile’ that is the final point of transaction between humanitarian organisations and beneficiaries. At its heart, LMMS is driven by humanitarians who understand and are passionate about creating technology which makes the lives of frontline humanitarians easier and the lives of beneficiaries simpler. As humanitarians, we understand the NGO world, its business processes, its challenges and opportunities. As technologists, we understand data security, data models, architecture, etc. Our leadership team has over 50 years of combined IT systems development and Humanitarian field operations experience. Together, we are driven by the following values:
  • We believe choice is an inherent foundation of human dignity
  • We believe all people should have control over who sees and has access to their data
  • We believe people are more important than technology
  • We believe data should be turned into knowledge which can lead to better decisions
  • We believe that people (NGO management, donors, etc.) should be able to ’see’ project progress
  • We believe data should be secure
  • We believe in interoperability and not having to build everything ourselves
  • We believe in the need to delight our clients and their customers / beneficiaries
LMMS has evolved with new technologies, as well as services, since it was first used in the humanitarian industry in 2008. During the past 9 years, LMMS has been deployed in over 30 countries, by over 20 different agencies. Annually, over 10 million beneficiaries are served by it.
Since 2008,LMMS has been deployed in over 30 countries, by over 20 different agencies including: World Vision, Oxfam, Save the Children, ICRC, MedAir, MercyCorps, UNICEF, UNHCR, etc. Annually, over 10 million beneficiaries are served by LMMS.
There are numerous pieces of evidence showing LMMS works including:
  • Accenture has completed an evaluation on LMMS concluding it saves time and reduces risks for organisations that use it.
  • World Vision, NRC, and MasterCard have all created case studies on their experience of using LMMS.

Registered .

Focus Areas:

Humanitarian Assistance, Refugees, Data Collection/Needs Assessments and 2 MoreSEE ALL

Humanitarian Assistance, Refugees, Data Collection/Needs Assessments, Response Technologies and Displaced Persons & Migration ManagementSEE LESS

Implemented In:

Zambia, Somalia, Nepal and 29 MoreSEE ALL

Zambia, Somalia, Nepal, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Tanzania, Swaziland, Sudan, South Sudan, Sierra Leone, Rwanda, Philippines, Pakistan, Niger, Mauritania, Mali, Malawi, Liberia, Lesotho, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, Haiti, Greece, Ethiopia, Congo, Democratic Republic of the, Chad, Central African Republic, Burundi, Myanmar and AngolaSEE LESS

Countries Implemented In

Mission and Vision

We will measure our progress by monitoring if we are improving in the following areas:
  • Do beneficiaries have greater control over their personal data enabling them to control who sees their data, to delete their data, and to see who has accessed their data, etc.?
  • Can frontline staff from any NGO will be able to implement projects with multiple cash payment options (voucher, mobile, bank, etc.) allowing beneficiaries to choose how to receive their aid (including part-aid and part-in-kind)?
  • Do frontline staff understand IM; not just the technology, but also the people and processes required (i.e. how to do good beneficiary registration, distributions, data collection, maintain dashboards, etc.)?
  • Do customers and stakeholders have greater access to real-time information regarding the progress of the implementation of their programme(s)?
  • Are we playing a role in creating and socialising standards of all kinds – ID, security, responsible data, etc.?
  • Are our customers delighted with the service they receive from us?

Innovation Description

LMMS® is a suite of innovative technology applications – a mobile ICT platform for humanitarian service delivery developed by World Vision in collaboration with other humanitarian agencies and the private sector. With field-to-office utilization of digital beneficiary information, LMMS is able to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of humanitarian interventions, through digitized household registration, automation of distribution processes, and reporting enabling greater accountability.
How does your innovation work?
The generic business process LMMS uses is as follows:
  1. Household members are digitally registered once and individuals receive a barcoded photo Ration ID card.
  2. Eligible households are enrolled into projects. Multiple projects can be enrolled without repeat registration. Registration is only a one-time exercise but household data may require updates for use in future projects as household data also changes overtime
  3. Commodity rations (in-kind and cash) are set once per project to automatically calculate distribution entitlements needed for distribution planning. Credit/Payment Instruction files are also downloaded and can be used to instruct third party Financial Service Provices to pay beneficiaries in cash projects. Payment Advise Slips can also be prodoced and shared with beneficiaries for accountability.
  4. During distribution, ration cards are scanned to determine eligibility and individuals are visually matched using photos on ration cards and in database
  5. Inventory can be tracked in real-time as commodities are distributed
  6. Distribution reports are generated in near real-time including total households and individuals reached and total commodities distributed
The LMMS system has three different modes of operation:
  1. Traditional roaming server (laptop) - never needs to connect to the internet – everything stays local on server.
  2. Cloud architecture – Android devices (smartphones or tablets) connect directly to cloud server (needs constant internet – 3G network or mobile satellite device). Cloud server could either be in-country or offshore.
  3. Offline capture – for registration only. Allows teams to go to field with only Android devices and register beneficiaries, including allowing staff to go door to door to do registration rather than requiring all beneficiaries to meet in one location. Ideal in dispersed contexts post disaster. After registration is done the team syncs the data to either a roaming server or cloud.

Competitive Advantage

Our primary value proposition is:
  1. We provide the choice of multiple cash payment options (voucher, mobile, bank, etc.) for projects and beneficiaries
  2. We help you (and your donors) have real-time information regarding the progress of the implementation of your programme
  3. We enable your beneficiaries to have control over their personal data
Our Secondary Value:
  1. Cost & Risk reduction
    • 30% reduction in project related budgetary costs for LMMS versus manual activities
    • 40% reduction in distribution staff and a corresponding reduction in related office and travel costs
    • Multiple agencies report a reduction in fraud and double dipping - zero losses in inventory post LMMS
    • Electronic audit trail of user activity and reports on which family member collected rations.
  2. Increased Speed & quality
    • At least a 50% time reduction for registration, distribution & reporting activities
    • 47% reduction in registration time
    • Improved beneficiary targeting and savings through reuse of data
    • Comprehensive reports by LMMS eliminate the need to capture thumbprints or signatures on paper - a development welcomed by both donors and beneficiaries alike
  3. 3.We bring knowledge in:
  • Standards & Security
  • Data Collection
  • Analytics
  • Integration

Planned Goals and Milestones

Our strategy for expansion includes moving the usage of LMMS beyond food aid and into all sectors and also into long-term development projects, not just humanitarian.
Our current focus is ongoing product development and substantially improving our customer support.


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Supporting Materials

Oxfam LMMS Partnership.pdf