Money money money …

Failed bank

There was a time when Joe Public had a fairly neutral attitude towards banks – they exist, they do a  fairly straightforward job reasonably reliably, end of story. It is not rocket science is it?  Except that it is apparently and it is so complex and so clever that they can reward themselves with vast sums for creating monstrous systems that few of them understand.  Here is a small example from everyday life as incompetence and misdirected priorities seep down the lowest rungs of the ladder:

Dear Sir/Madam – I am not often prompted to contact customer service but your recent email entitled “Improving our service” was a classic example of the law of unintended consequences.

1. When I login to my account I find that the inactivity timer is set so low (in seconds) that I am continually logged out as I switch between pages;

2. Why am I switching between pages? – because I wanted to send a secure message;

3. Why did I want to send a secure message? – because your “good news” email prompted me to look at my savings account which I find is generating an inglorious 0.1% interest per annum

4. Is this the best you can do? I suspect not – why then, as a longstanding customer, can you not automatically transfer my accounts to the best rate – far better to invest in real improvements to customer service than tarting up website interfaces.

I have copied to my wife who has a similar account and will be similarly disappointed – so that little marketing initiative worked well didn’t it.


V Meldrew

Rant over, I feel better for that :-).


  1. harrienijland · December 1, 2014

    🙂 Nice post; great shot!

    • northumbrianlight · December 1, 2014

      Thanks Harrie – the picture is a stock image which fits the story perfectly 🙂

  2. LaVagabonde · December 1, 2014

    There’s a special place in Hades for bankers. At least I hope there is.

  3. easyweimaraner · December 1, 2014

    I’ll second the comment of LaVagabonde… and I hope this place is on the windy and rainy side of the Hades :o) btw: my dad said that’s my mom’s fault as he saw the picture, too much black friday shopping and now the bank is broke(n) :o)

    • northumbrianlight · December 1, 2014

      They have been broken for years Easy – definitely not your mom’s fault 🙂

  4. M-R · December 1, 2014

    I would, too. Have you moved your accounts to another rapacious bank ? What does ‘V’ stand for ? – Valentine ? Vernon ?? Victor ???

    • northumbrianlight · December 1, 2014

      Not yet – Aha – Victor Meldrew, my alter ego –

      • M-R · December 1, 2014

        Made me laugh like ANYTHING ! – ‘specially the reference to Frank Spencer ! {grin}
        So you remain A. Nonymous, then: fairy nuff ! 🙂

      • northumbrianlight · December 2, 2014

        I think the anonymity won’t last long – lots of clues in the next post. Glad you enjoyed Victor 🙂 He reminds me of my Dad and I am fast heading in the same direction 😦

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