Month: February 2012

One roll, ten rooms…

Back in 2008, when recession started, many companies had waged cost-cutting initiatives all over the world (at least the countries affected by recession). Back in India, in IT companies, these initiatives ranged from cutting the free cab rides, keeping a tab on free stationery (rationing the stationery or completely doing away with it).

One thing, which irked me most was the removal of paper tissues (not from the stalls, but paper napkins for drying your hand) from the restrooms. Obviously being environment friendly was one of the reasons which was given at the same time for taking that decision. Well played, I would say!

My personal take on that “go green initiative” was that it was nothing but a cost cutting initiative which was to stay forever. Many a times, you need a napkin in the restroom – maybe to blow your nose, to wipe your face when you’re in a city where dust touches your face before wind. You can not blow your face dry by putting it under the hand-dryer! Well, technically you can, if you torment yourself by bending your neck and making a fool of yourself before others.

What I have noted in my current premise is, there are five floors, 2 restrooms on each floor, 10 in all (for men). At times, I have been surprised to find a roll to pat my hands dry but when I visit the same restroom again after few hours, it’s gone! I used to curiously think – “Where did all that paper go? Did others use it in excess, just coz it was there today, a fair surprise for all?” That curiosity was answered today, when I saw the janitor taking out the roll, putting it in a plastic bag, and telling the other janitor who entered behind him, that he has been ordered to take it on the second floor! Well, there was my answer for days when I was thinking how the hell the paper roll finished so fast?

Standard Chartered Marketing Mail

Few months back, I received a call from a tele-marketer about a credit card from Standard Chartered bank. I was reluctant about getting it, but the tele-marketer explained me the benefits, which looked pretty good. She asked me the normal details – salary, where I work and normal stuff and told me that I “will” be eligible for a card with a credit limit of at least INR 1,00,000. This is what pushed me to get the card, even though I was already having two other cards with credit limit of equal or greater value.

Three weeks after that day, I received the card and it was having a credit limit of just INR 26,000. Saying that I was surprised would be going very soft on Standard Chartered guys. I cursed them from the depth of my heart for this “kind of joke”. I called them instantly and put down a cancellation request. I was asked the reason and I told them that the credit limit on the card is not what I was promised. A variation from the promised limit is expected, but not a variation of this magnitude. The customer support rep, was not in mood of letting me go and told me that every bank has its own set of guidelines for deciding credit limit and other nonsense stuff! I gently told him that I understand this, and would have appreciated to understand this even better if the limit would have been in range of +- 15K and then I asked firmly to cancel the card. That was it.

Nonetheless, I am writing this post since I am still getting Standard Chartered marketing mails on my email account! Shouldn’t they have deleted my email address during my credit card cancellation? THEY SHOULD HAVE. Every other bank does so, I cancelled a card of HSBC some time back, and I stopped getting marketing emails from them. Some of you might say that, it’s not such a big deal – Well, not for you,  but it is for me! And to top all this, I cannot simply unsubscribe from this newsletter by clicking a web link! The unsubscribe option in the footer of newsletter, takes me to landing page for phone banking of Standard Chartered! 

This all means that I need to call on their customer support numbers to get me off the mailing list? Why? Why can’t they have a simple unsubscribe me link on their web page, which can get me rid of this unwanted mail? Every other web based newsletter has this small yet essential  feature. How hard it is to have it?

I would humbly request Standard Chartered to get it implemented, which will ensure better customer service!

Algorithm Glitch or is it ok?

Few minutes ago, I was browsing to listen to Kishore Kumar. I noticed Hot Searches just below Search bar, and one of the names was Bruce Springsteen, though the spelling was incorrect there, and it was mentioned as Bruce Sprinsteen. Nonetheless, I thought that I better listen to him as it’s been long since I heard any of this songs. When I clicked on the text, I was taken to “No records found” text.

I was a bit puzzled, that if a term has been mentioned as hot search, how come it returns no results? Is it ok to list search terms which return no result on your site, just cause people are searching it on the site? If you ask me, it’s not correct behavior. Even from an user standpoint, I do not want to see a term in “Hot Searches” if it is not going to return a result for me. people should look into the algorithm for this functionality and probably should try to fix the same. Unless, someone can explain and convince me that such search terms are pretty much ok to have.