11/09/2004

A Silver Bullet

In my last post I told you that a banking issue was resolved in about five minutes.

I am sorry to say that I lied unknowingly.
I won't explain all the gory details, but let's just say this is the banking experience from hell. If I ever needed proof that the government hires only the incompetent, I had more than enough yesterday. It's bad when not even a Branch Manager can get enough information from the Student Loan Centre.

What financial institutions need is a Silver Bullet, an Omni Program, the Great Communicator. They desperately need something that will talk to all the other programs they run and provide any information they need in a clean, concise and understandable manner.
Yesterday I watched as the Manager of my branch typed (into a blank screen no less) a cryptic string of letters and numbers that looked something like:
TX 678BDA42
That brought up some information on my loan.
However, it brought up different information than was showing at the Loan Centre. She then typed in another cryptic string of letters and numbers hat looked like:
TX 65FG4269
(give or take).

I was floored!
I cannot believe that this is how banks operate.
No.
I take it back.
I once worked at a bank for two summers in a row and I remember a program used for checking customer information that was not so lovingly referred to as The Big Green Monster. I have no idea what it was really called. I know it ran on a mainframe somewhere. I know it was brutal to use.

You would think that big institutions that are making hundreds of millions of dollars a year could afford to do better.

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