Wednesday, August 05, 2015

Database strategy

Your database is a valuable resource. Are you using it effectively to manage your business and increase your profits?

My favorite You Ya

When I was in my early 20s, my favorite singer was You Ya. At that time, the hotter favorite was Theresa Teng. You Ya must be about six years younger than me.

Theresa Teng passed away 20 years ago. But You Ya is still active in the entertainment scene. She must be around 60 years now, but she still looked quite young and pretty.

Here is You Ya.
https://www.youtube.com/watch…

I met You Ya in Singapore in 1995. She was about 40 then.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6CVbvmW3Pg

At my request, my friend invited her to perform at a concert in Singapore. My son, who was 12 years old, went up the stage to present a bouquet of flowers to her.



Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Contest - General Election

Contest: Guess the percentage of votes for the People's Action Party in the next general election in 2015/16.



Choose the right life insurance policy

Most people bought the life insurance policy that was recommended by the agent. They should learn how to choose the right policy, as it is a very important decision that impact them over the long term.
http://c-pearl.com/cart.aspx?ID=5

The FREE items are most popular

Hi Mr. Tan
I see that the items marked $0 are listed at the top of your webpage. Why do you want to promote these FREE items?
http://c-pearl.com/cord.aspx

REPLY
This webpage automatically lists the most popular items at the top of the list. As you can expect, the free items are the most popular. But a few of the $4 items are also quite popular.

Rejected insurance claim

Do you need my help to deal with a rejected insurance claim?
http://tklcloud.com/Consult/service.aspx?ID=3

Improve business efficiency

Here are some interesting ideas on how to improve your business efficiency
http://tklcloud.com/Consult/infox.aspx

Consultancy

Do you need the service of a contract administrator?
http://tklcloud.com/Consult/service.aspx?ID=6

Work less hours and be more productive

Singapore should learn from Germany on how to be productive and work less hours. I respect the German system very much. 
http://knote.com/…/why-germans-work-fewer-hours-but-produc…/

Pulse of the Citizen

At the forthcoming general election, the party that will do well is the one that feels the pulse of the citizen. Which party is it? Maybe, you like to give your feedback on a platform similar to this?

Pulse of the Customer

Feel the Pulse of the Customer. Which are the top five companies that provide the best service in Singapore, based on feedback of customers? You can view them from this Scoreboard. The ranking will change from time to time, based on new feedback that are submitted daily.

An excellent organization is one that keeps in touch with the Pulse of the Customer!

http://sg-pulse.com/result.aspx

Monday, August 03, 2015

New format for feedback on service quality

The individual feedback on the service quality provided by organizations in Singapore is now presented in a new format. I hope that you like it better. You can view the new format here:
http://sg-pulse.com/recent.aspx

Get value from your life insurance



Many consumers have asked for my views on the life insurance policies that they have bought previously or are being recommended to them now. These are mostly whole life or investment-linked policies that are intended to provide insurance protection and as a form of savings for the future.

I wish to present the results of my analysis in this book. They represent the policies that are now sold in the market in Singapore. I have removed the name of the consumer and the insurance agent from the benefit illustrations.

http://c-pearl.com/cart.aspx?ID=31

Books on financial planning and problem solving

The books on financial planning and problem solving in my website are ranked in order of popularity. At the top are the three books that are now given away free. The other books are being sold for $4 to $12 in PDF and hard copy form. They are easy to read. The tips on insurance and investment will be worth a lot of money to the consumer.
http://c-pearl.com/cord.aspx

Sunday, August 02, 2015

Inflation adjusted projection

Carry out a financial projection that adjust for inflation. There is an explanation on how to interpret the projected figures. 
http://c-pearl.com/financialProj.aspx

Service Scoreboard

A new service organization has now topped the scoreboard pushing down Singapore Airlines. Guess this new champion.
http://sg-pulse.com/result.aspx

Ranking of service organizations in Singapore

Which service organization in Singapore has the best website, the best call center and the best overall service? Find out here:
http://sg-pulse.com/result.aspx

An amazing gift

Here is am amazing gift for your children to amaze their friends and become popular. This purchase comes in 4 sets of cards, so they can give to their close friends and keep one set for their own use.

Saturday, August 01, 2015

A messy taxi situation

Sometimes I wonder whether I should sympathize with taxi drivers. They now have reduced business due to the slow economic situation and greater competition from private cars operating under the Uber and Grab Taxi platforms.

However, when you want a taxi during the peak hours, you are not likely to find one on the road. The taxis appear to be in hiding and will only appear when you call them and pay the booking fee of $3.20 on top of peak hour surcharges.

As I could not walk due to a gout attack, I went to office by taxi this Saturday morning and paid $7 for a short trip. I did not book a taxi, so this is without the booking fee.

In the evening, I could not find any taxi. I was reluctant to book for a taxi and pay $10. In spite of pain in the foot, I walked to the bus stop and took a bus home.

If the taxi business continues to be bad, more taxi drivers will give up and may turn to Uber and Grab Taxi to operate a non-taxi service. With lower demand, the taxi companies will have to reduce the rental charges on their taxis.

My conclusion - there is no need to sympathize with taxi drivers who are now facing reduced demand. They have the choice to reduce their cost and provide a non-taxi service on the new platforms. Let the taxi companies reduce their rental.

Clearly, the taxi system in Singapore is in a mess and is messy. This shows the "free market approach" adopted by the government is short sighted, and has led to inefficiency, waste of resources and high operating cost.

  

Most popular books from Pearl Shop

Here are the most popular books from Pearl Shop.Three of them are offered free.
http://c-pearl.com/cord.aspx

Free - book on Tangram

This PDF book on Tangram is offered free for 2 days. Act now. 
http://c-pearl.com/cart.aspx?ID=28

Medical Bills for Elderly People

The medical bills for elderly people can be quite expensive. If you want to find some tips on how to reduce your cost, or what insurance to buy, you can find them here. This is an easy to read booklet.

If you are young, think of your parents. If you are elderly, think about yourself.

You can order this book easily for only $4. It gives you the peace of mind, and can save you a few hundred or thousand dollars at the right time.
http://c-pearl.com/cart.aspx?ID=2

Private cars operating as taxis


Some private cars are operating as taxis under the Uber or Grab Taxi platform.

I booked for a taxi under Grab Taxi to take me to the airport. I was surprised that a private car came to pick me.

I asked the taxi driver a few days later, "Do you have insurance to cover accidents when you private car is being used as a taxi? The normal insurance policy does not cover use "for hire".

He replied - we are required to take up commercial insurance to cover accidents for third parties.

Note - this is still not the answer to my question. I wonder - if he meets with an accident, will his private car be covered by his insurance policy? Will it cover payment of compensation to passengers who are travelling in his private car?


Share your experience on service organizations

Each of us encounter the service provided by banks, telcos, insurers, transport and government agencies. We visit their website or branch or call their hotline.

Do they provide good service or lousy service? Share your most recent experience here and win a book prize.

http://sg-pulse.com/recent.aspx

Friday, July 31, 2015

Insurance question

If you wish to seek my views on insurance, you can register her for a free assessment. 
http://tklcloud.com/Consult/service.aspx?ID=3

Get advice on children insurance

Hi Mr Tan,

Appreciate if you could help me with some insurance questions as I am a bit confused which is the best for my family.

Under Aviva, there is free coverage for the children under plan 2 (structured public hospitals with riders) until age 20. I was told by another non-Aviva agent at first, that Aviva does not cover any illness or condition between the start of the free coverage until age 20. So after age 20, must declare and then maybe must pay higher premiums.

I called Aviva, they say there is no need to talk about pre-existing conditions at all as the policy starts at point of application, ie, when free coverage starts. So even illnesses before age 20 wont have exclusions.

I am a little confused. But Aviva free coverage is only for structured hospitals, while other non-Aviva we can get private hospitals. What do you suggest for children? I thought public hospitals are also equally good.

REPLY
Please register here and send your quotations to me for a free assessment
http://tklcloud.com/Consult/service.aspx?ID=3

Some tips on buying term and accident insurance

Dear Mr. Tan

Q1. When to buy the term or accident insurance? If when have dependent (eg: children?) 

Q2. If I already purchased term insurance (cover death & terminal illness), do I still need to buy term accident insurance?

Q3. Noted your advice a term of 25 years of shorter. if youngest children haven't reach 21 year old /graduated, do you advice need purchase another term insurance to cover them to grow up?

Q4. Do you advice purchase accident term insurance on children?

Q5. My parent (Malaysian) who doesn't have medical coverage (eg: Medishield or Private insurance coverage) in Singapore and Malaysia, what you will advice (any insurance term or opinion) if they falling sickness in future?

REPLY

Q1. You buy insurance when you have a need to provide a lump sum to your family in the event of your premature death. The family could be your parents who depend on your income, or your spouse and young children. You can also buy accident insurance to provide a payment in the event of permanent or temporary disability.

Q2.  If you have adequate term insurance, you usually do not need to buy accident insurance. However, as the premium is quite low, you can buy accident insurance to provide a benefit in the event of permanent of temporary disability caused by accident (which are not covered by a term insurance policy).

Q3.  You should be covered for term insurance until your youngest child reach age 21 or until you have accumulated sufficient savings on your own.  A term of 25 years is usually sufficient, but it is all right to be insured a few years longer. You can compare the difference in premium and make your decision.  

Q4. You can buy a small amount of accident insurance for your child to cover payment of medical fees in the event of insurance. The premium is very low, so you can treat the expenses like any other small expenses.

Q5. If your parents are living in Singapore, you can insure them under Medishield or a private insurance policy. Get the advice of an insurance adviser.


Share you experience on insurance claims

Do you have positive or negative experience with the claim settlement of insurance companies, e.g. motor insurance, travel insurance, health insurance?

Read the views of other customer here, and sign in to share your own experience.

If more customers are willing to speak up, they will help to encourage the insurance companies to settle their claims promptly and fairly.

http://sg-pulse.com/Insurer/recent_rept.aspx

Give feedback on service organizations in Singapore

Do you want to share your experience on dealing with 5 service organizations in Singapore, such as banks, airlines, telcos, etc.

When you submit 5 feedback, you will win a book  prize.
http://sg-pulse.com/recent.aspx

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Breakdown of MRT lines in July 2015


Soong Lin Hao

I found the article disturbing and thought that I have the duties as a Singaporean and an engineer to point out some contradictions.

The article seems to suggest that the root cause is leakage of high chloride content water. And then it went on to say that smrt will thoroughly check for old and worn out insulation and have them replaced. Well, isn't this contradicting? Is the root cause due to high chloride content water or due to old and worn out insulation?

To me, the article is not clear. Assuming if the root cause is due to old and worn out insulation, the next question one should ask is why there is no regular preventive maintenance program to test their resistance levels and replace them in advance? The science of insulation is not rocket science. In many facilities such as refineries, chemical and power plants, it is common to check the resistance level of the insulation regularly. Why is this an exception in smrt?

Another point to raise is such failures have not happened in the last 30 over years until recently? Was it not possible for the insulation to be exposed to high chloride content water in the past until recently? Personally, I can't buy into the article argument.

Lastly, I am concerned that the protective relay setpoint is being increased to minimize likelihood of future power trips. The function of the protective relay is to cut off the electricity in the event of short circuits and short circuits can lead to arcing and electrical fires. It is a practice for operators to use a set point to minimize nuisance electrical faults from lightnings and animals as these kind of faults do not generate currents large enough to pose safety issues.

But to my knowledge, electrical faults due to faulty insulation are definitely real safety issues which the protective relays are designed to prevent. I am sure there is a panel of experts looking at this issue and I am probably not qualified to challenge them professionally. However, I believe I have valid and very important points and it is the responsibility of the authorities to ensure that the investigation is fair and effective.

There was also a cable fire at Newton in Feb 2015. If the root cause had indeed been identified, we should not see the issues recurring again and again.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Look for a consultant


Claim Rejection
Do you have an insurance claim that has been rejected unfairly? I can take a look and see if you have a case. The initial assessment is free.http://tklcloud.com/Consult/service.aspx?ID=3

Quantity survey and contract administration
Are you involved in construction but find it too expensive to engage an experienced quantity surveyor or contract administrator? You can engage this service on a part time basis and get access to a professional service at a modest cost. http://tklcloud.com/Consult/service.aspx?ID=13

Personal growth
Do you have the mental strength? Are you able to face challenges and crisis with confidence? Talk to Dr Tommy Wong. He might be able to help you in your personal growth.
http://tklcloud.com/Consult/service.aspx?ID=17

Claim Experience

Do you have an insurance claim that was settled promptly and fairly? Or a claim that gave you a lot of hassle or was rejected unfairly? You can share your experience here and also read the experience of other claimants.
http://sg-pulse.com/Insurer/scoreboard.aspx

Monday, July 27, 2015

Share your claim experience or read what other people say

Do you like to know what other people say about their claim experience with the insurance company that you have bought a policy from?
You can register and sign into this website, to find out about their views. You can also submit your own claim experience to share with other people.
http://sg-pulse.com/Insurer/page/1

Financial Projection, deducting effect of inflation

Here is a clearer explanation of how you can carry out a financial projection that excludes the effect of inflation. You will know if you have sufficient savings at your expected retirement age.

http://c-pearl.com/financialProj.aspx

Develop the skill of problem solving

Many people are afraid about facing challenges and solving problems.
But problem solving can be trained.
It is a matter of knowing what to look out for, and knowing the steps to take.
These two books can give the practice. With time, you can be confident of solving problems, as it is a matter of taking the right steps.
http://c-onyx.com/pdf/2328

Bus Lanes in Singapore

A taxi driver told me about the different types of bus lines:
a) Those colored red and yellow
b) Those with solid and dotted lines.
I find them to be quite confusing. So, I checked Google and found out the following:


Inflated injury claim

A doctor told me that the injury claims under motor insurance are grossly inflated. His son had an accident recently. There were minor damages to the vehicles. He received a claim from the third party asking for $50,000 (or thereabouts) in injury claims for medical expenses, pain and suffering and loss wages.

The claim is grossly inflated and unjustified. But this case will be argued in court leading to a lot of wasted time and legal fees.

As a doctor, he receives requests from lawyers to submit reports for these claims. It takes a lot of his time and he has to bill the lawyer for the report. It seems to be a waste of time. Many of these cases involve whiplash injury, which is quite subjective.  Is there  a better way for such claims to be handled?

MY REPLY
The problem of inflated injury claims has been around for decades. In recent years, it must have got much worse. This is clearly a matter that requires the government to step in and find a way to address the issue through legislation or regulation.

The payment of these injury claims add to the cost of motor insurance. Consumers should ask the government to address this problem, and bring down the premiums charged.

In some countries, e.g. Sweden, they write a law to spell out how injury claims should be compensated. This is done by an independent assessor working under the law. In most cases, the decision of the assessor is taken as fair. It reduced legal cost significantly.

We should adopt such a system and support it with a database of past claims to guide the assessor. If the assessment is disputed, it can go through a review where another 1 or 2 assessors are appointed to make their assessment. 

To ensure that the assessment is done impartially, the identify of the assessor and the claimant should be kept hidden until the assessment has been completed. The assessment should be done based on the facts of the case, and not the identity of the party involved. 

As this has been a serious matter for many years, it is useful for the authority to take the lead to implement such a system or to find a practical solution.


Waiver of handling fee in Pearl Shop

You can save on the handling fee of $3 when you buy these books and items during the promotion period.
http://c-pearl.com/cord.aspx
Some of the books are given free. This includes my recent slides on financial planning. Search for "financial planning".

Customer Feedback

Here are the recent customer feedback on service organizations in Singapore. It is like writing a letter to the newspaper.
http://sg-pulse.com/recent.aspx

Term insurance for 25 years

Dear Mr. Tan
In your talk on financial planning, you recommended consumer to buy term insurance for a term of 25 years or shorter. Why a term of 25 years or shorter? Should we cover ourselves till retirement age of 65 for term insurance? Thanks.


REPLY
After 25 years, your children have grown up and you have sufficient savings at that time. But if you wish to be insured until age 65, it is okay as the difference in premium is quite small.


Read this book.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Scoreboard (sg-pulse.com)


You can view this scoreboard at
http://sg-pulse.com/result.aspx

It may change from time to time, based on the feedback that has been submitted to this website.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Useful links to my web pages

Useful links for my web pages.

To buy my books

Amazing Number
http://c-pearl.com/cart.aspx?ID=41
(You save $3 on waiver of handling fee during the promotion period).

Supplementary Retirement Scheme
http://c-pearl.com/cart.aspx?ID=14

Medical Bills for the Elderly
http://c-pearl.com/cart.aspx?ID=2

Financial Planning for Young People
http://c-pearl.com/cart.aspx?ID=19

Financial Projection (free)

Complacency and elitism in the top ranks of civil service

I agree with the observation by MP Inderjit Singh. The full article can be read here.
Complacency and elitism in top ranks of civil service
Singh also spoke out against the complacency and elitism he “detected” in the top ranks of civil servants. He said, "today’s policy makers live in a different society from the average Singaporean”.
The MP said that during his Meet-the-People sessions, he had encountered a number of residents who questioned the rationale of government policies.
He urged the government to consider reorganizing the policy making process, to “reverse it to make it more bottom-up and driven by the man in the street” instead of the top-down approach of policies crafted by those seated in “an ideal clean and sterile policy lab or an ivory tower”.
Singh had observed that the civil service’s top ranks are populated by scholars chosen for their academic achievements. He expressed concern that these scholars, who are “parachuted” to high positions at a young age, may not have the experience or understanding to craft policies for the rest of the population.
Singh supported a different approach to talent management in the public service, saying that “we need the best people for the respective jobs not necessarily the best academically qualified for all the jobs.”
Since it was published on Monday evening, Singh’s post has been shared over 400 times on Facebook, garnering over 400 likes. Comments thus far have been positive, applauding Singh for his insights and thanking him for speaking out. The CEO of a Singapore home appliances and electronics company, Singh has been an MP for 18 years.

SG50 Guaranteed Saver Policy

Here is my analysis of the SG50 Guaranteed Saver Policy from Great Eastern Life.
It is okay, but there are catches!
http://c-onyx.com/page/2331

Listen to customer feedback

Mr. Tan
You have posted several feedback from customers on service organization in Singapore.
When you were in charge of NTUC, did you listen to the feedback from your customers?

REPLY
I listen to them all the time. They usually wrote to me by e-mail. Most of the improvements to service quality came from feedback from customers, agents and staffs. They are affected by the current processes every day, and they knew what was good and what was bad.
If the top management of service organizations pay attention to these feedback, they will set a culture that go down the different levels. Their managers and staff will be positive in responding to customer feedback.

Improve SMS queuing system

A customer has given this feedback to Sing Tel on how to improve the SMS queuing system.

"The only thing I can think of improving is the SMS queue alert ... make it more accurate based on historical data of interactions, so that when I'm told there are 2 people ahead of me in the queue, and 10 min waiting, I know it's reasonably accurate. As the system stands now, I got the alert at the same time my number was called, and there's a possibility of me missing my queue slot."

The feedback on several service organization  can be viewed here:
http://sg-pulse.com/recent.aspx

Improve service quality in Singapore - you can play a part

\Who are the top 5 service organizations in Singapore based on customer feedback?

The answer can be found here:
http://sg-pulse.com/result.aspx

Here are the 10 most recent feedback. The stories make interesting reading:
http://sg-pulse.com/recent.aspx

We need more people to give feedback, so that the results become more reliable.

You can give your feedback here and win a prize as well.
http://sg-pulse.com/page/9

Friday, July 24, 2015

How to improve service quality - with some simple thinking

A customer give this negative feedback about OCBC Bank.

"Hotline stating CPF investment number but when dial, it brings all options including credit cards and many useless service."

If the bank advertises a hotline number for a service, they should expect to receive a few hundred calls. Why put the customer through the frustration of going through many irrelevant options? It is simple to provide a mini-call center, with a specific advertised number, for each marketing campaign. The customer will be answered immediately.

This will improve service quality and marketing results. We only need to do some simple thinking!

Criticism has to be within constraint

PM Lee said that the government welcomed criticism within Singapore but they have to be within constraint. He quoted the case of Roy Ngerng and Amos Yee.

Read this article

I agree with his view. His government had been quite tolerant, in general, over criticisms expressed in the social media.

But for the two cases, the government had over-reacted. There was no need to sue Roy Ngerng. Having sued him, he should have accepted the offer of compensation of $5,000 which represented more than one month's salary for Roy Ngerng.

There was also no need to charge Amos Yee for causing religious unhappines, which never existed.

In spite of these to bad cases, his government had been quite tolerant of online criticism.

Three key challenges facing Singapore


PM Lee has identified the three key challenges facing Singapore.

SINGAPORE: Enhancing the economy, the ageing population and maintaining a national identity are the three biggest challenges that Singapore faces over the next half-century, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said.

I agree with his assessment.

What he did not say is that the policies that he had implemented over the past three decades were responsible for the last two challenges facing the country.

He should recognize them immediately and reverse them. If they are not reversed, the challenges will become worse.

Read this article

Reasons to introduce a minimum wage in Singapore

Mr. Tan
I have read your previous articles about a minimum wage. You have given several reasons why a minimum wage is necessary but they tend to be economic arguments.

Are you able to write a more complete presentation to argue the case for a minimum wage? This is important for many people who are caught in the low wage trap, having to compete with foreigners.

I am above 50, and now face this situation.

REPLY
It is important for many people to know why many countries implement a minimum wage, and Singapore still avoids it.

Although many young workers are not affected by low wage now, they may face it in the future. Their parents are probably facing the issue.

We should understand the issue and give our voice in support of a minimum wage.

You asked me to write a longer "presentation". I cannot find the time to do it, but I like to recommend you to this PDF book, which cost only $2. It takes only half an hour to read. It will help you to understand the issue better.

http://c-pearl.com/cart.aspx?ID=38

Yunnan Hair Treatment


I went to my regular barber in Bishan North. I had been frequently the shop for two years.

I was served by a young man for the first time. He was quite talkative. He asked if I was a regular customer. I replied "yes".

While cutting my hair, he said that I had been using a cream that made my hair oily. It is causing the hair to drop. I should take care of my hair. He asked for the type of shampoo that I was using and told me to avoid certain types. He advised me to take a treatment to protect  my hair.

I knew that he was telling lies or just engaging in "sales talk". I had not been using any hair oil for the past week. My hair is in quite good condition for my age, compared to many people who are almost bald.

Out of politeness, I asked him to tell me what is the treatment and how much does it cost, and how long does it take. The package comprises of 8 treatments cost a total of $600. It can be taken over 4 to 6 months.

He showed me a folder with some printed pages to show the different types of packages and explain their benefit. They use a special product from Yunnan that was found to be very successful.

Although he had completed my hair cut, he did not remove the covering. He kept me in a "captive" position to listen to his sales talk. He showed me the photos of a customer who had a successful treatment.

I politely removed the covering myself, thanked him, paid the haircut fee and leave the shop. This will be the last time that I am visit this barber shop.

Lesson
I avoid this type of sales technique - which usually comprise of vague and verbal promises of what are the benefits of the product. The price is usually non-transparent and greatly over-priced.

This is how many insurance agents sell their bad life insurance policies. It is also how the spas sell their packages. There is usually a purported discount over an over-priced treatment.

Consumers should learn to identify all types of sales that are made in this manner and learn how to avoid them.



Thursday, July 23, 2015

DBS is at the top

DBS/POSB is at the top of the scoreboard for service organizations in Singapore.
Among the insurers, NTUC Income now beats AIA.
View details here:
http://sg-pulse.com/result.aspx

Here are the recent responses of specific organizations
http://sg-pulse.com/recent.aspx

Win a book prize

Register here, sign in and click on [Participate] to give 5 feedback to win a book prize.
http://sg-pulse.com/register.aspx
Terms and conditions are here:
http://sg-pulse.com/page/9

Additional Bonus: you can view the detailed rankings of the service organizations after submitting 5 feedback.


Amazing Numbers is now available in Pearl Shop

The popular Amazing Numbers is now available in Pearl Shop.
http://c-pearl.com/cart.aspx?ID=41
You can buy it during the promotion period and save on the delivery fee of $3.
You get 4 sets of cards to give to four children to amaze their friends.
They can guess the secret number (from 1 to 99) by showing the 7 cards. The technique is explained in a separate card.
This amazing puzzle always amazes every one. That is why it is called "Amazing Numbers".

Train the mind in problem solving



These two books involving arranging of pieces to form shapes are good for training the mind in problem solving.

They can be purchased from www.c-pearl.com/shop.
Additional plastic pieces can also be bought to give fun to members of the family and to organize a home competition.

Annual Performance Appraisal - my approach


Here are two articles about two large multi-national companies that implemented a new way of carrying out their annual performance appraisal.

This article reports that Accenture is changing its traditional approach as it takes too much time to train the managers and supervisors on the system and to carry out the exercise each year. Furthermore, the outcome has been unsatisfactory.

This article reports that Deloitte is now asking only four simple questions in their performance appraisal.

When I was running a large insurance company, I also found the traditional approach to be time consuming and counter productive.

I adopted a simplified performance appraisal system involving a few simple questions. The approach is similar to what was done by Deloitte.

I did not rank all the employees according to the performance scale, as it was too controversial and those who ranked poorly felt demoralized. They also felt that the performance appraisal system was flawed.

Instead, I used the results to identify the top 25% to be considered for a performance bonus. It was used as a motivating factor, without the harmful effort of being demoralizing. It provided an incentive for employees to perform well. Even so, the people picked to be the top 25% tend to be the same group of people over the years. The other employees also felt that the appraisal was unfair and that the managers tend to give higher scores to their favorites.

On balance, we still need a simple performance system. It may not be a perfect system, but it probably provided more good than harm, if it was adopted correctly.



Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Financial Planning for Young People

This is the most popular book in my internet shop.
Financial Planning for Young People


Do not miss this boat

40 people have won the book prize for submitting 5 feedback on the service organizations in Singapore. 60 more to do. But they are being taken up very fast.

Act now, if you do not want to miss the boat!
http://sg-pulse.com/page/9

Four questions used by Delilotte to evalute ites employees


Everyone loves to hate performance evaluations, and with good reason:Research has shown them to be ineffective, unreliable and unsatisfactory for seemingly everyone involved. They consume way too much time, leave most workers deflated and feel increasingly out of step with reality. A once-a-year, backwards-looking conversation with the boss hardly fits our forward-looking, instantly updated world. Yet despite all that frustration, many companies do little to change them, thinking there are few alternatives.

That hasn't been the case at Deloitte. The new issue of the Harvard Business Review, released Tuesday, unveils a detailed look at the professional services firm's total redesign of its performance management program. It's an overhaul the company first started rolling out nine months ago.

Read this article

As a result, Deloitte wanted to do two main things to simplify the process. It sought to stop asking so many people to weigh in on each employee's performance, instead asking only the team leader for input. Then, it rewrote the evaluation questions, nixing the standard assessment of a person's skills (or "competencies," in corporate parlance).

Now, at the end of every project, or once a quarter if employees have long-term assignments, managers would answer four simple questions — and only four. The first two are answered on a five-point scale, from "strongly agree" to "strongly disagree;" the second two have yes or no options:

1. Given what I know of this person’s performance, and if it were my money, I would award this person the highest possible compensation increase and bonus.

2. Given what I know of this person’s performance, I would always want him or her on my team.

3. This person is at risk for low performance.

4. This person is ready for promotion today.

That's it.

The HBR report says Deloitte hasn't resolved how it will share the data with employees.

Accenture will get rid of annual performance ranking


As of September, one of the largest companies in the world will do all of its employees and managers an enormous favor: It will get rid of the annual performance review.

Accenture CEO Pierre Nanterme told The Washington Post that the professional services firm, which employs hundreds of thousands of workers in cities around the globe, has been quietly preparing for this “massive revolution” in its internal operations.

“Imagine, for a company of 330,000 people, changing the performance management process—it’s huge,” Nanterme said. “We’re going to get rid of probably 90 percent of what we did in the past.”

The firm will disband rankings and the once-a-year evaluation process starting in fiscal year 2016, which for Accenture begins this September. It will implement a more fluid system, in which employees receive timely feedback from their managers on an ongoing basis following assignments.

Read this article

My comment:

This is an interesting development. The annual performance ranking, which was supposed to be a "must have" tool in managing people, has now been found to be counter productive. I have observed this phenomena many years ago.






Feedback on service quality

Read the most recent feedback of service organizations in Singapore here.
http://sg-pulse.com/recent.aspx

Scoreboard of service quality

Here is the scoreboard of service organizations in Singapore. Guess which organization comes out at the top? It was a surprise to me. 
http://sg-pulse.com/result.aspx

Blog Archive