Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Cut down unnecessary work

I feel very sad whenever I encounter incidents of wasteful practices in Singapore.

The people in charge may not realize that their SOP creates a lot of wasteful work that can be avoided. It adds to the cost of doing business significantly.

I share this recent example.

Two marketeers from Keppel Electric came to my office to convince me to switch my electric supply from Singapore Power to Keppel Electric. They offered a discount of 20% on the rate charged by Singapore Power.

I am not attracted by the discount, but I wanted to help the two marketeers to achieve their target. I agreed to make the switch.

The paperwork horrified me. I have to give them a copy of my SP bill, my ACRA return, my NRIC and to sign the application form and the GIRO form.

I almost decided to cancel the transfer. But I did not want to disappoint the two marketeers who had put in so much work.

I continued with the painful paperwork.

This is what my common sense tells me.

This is an existing customer with a SP bill showing the electricity supply to the premises. The customer must be a legitimate business, as SP has been supplying utilities to the premises.

There is no need to ask for the ACRA form and the NRIC of the applicant.

A signed application, with the company stamp, and a copy of the SP bill should be sufficient for the new supplier to take over.

Why does Keppel Electric have a cumbersome process? It is dictated by their SOP. The SOP probably did not distinguish between a new application and a transfer for an existing user.

In practice, most of their activities involve a transfer from an existing user. Surely, they can save a lot of work and business cost by adopting a common sense approach?

Tan Kin Lian

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