Monday, April 23, 2012

Faulty Technology

I do a number of 'on-line' surveys and get paid for doing them. Some you accrue points which can be used to convert into vouchers for a number of well-known retail outlets, or they can be converted into Amazon points. I have managed to get quite a few items from Amazon, books, a digital watch, an external hard-drive for the iMac, as well as managing to get a microwave, an electric iron and a mini DVD player as well as a Sony e-reader from Argos and Curry's. I had a cheque to pay into my Nationwide account come in the post on Saturday and decided to go into the city centre to pay it into the account. The branch has a couple of automated machines that allow you to pay in cash, cheques as well as the usual A.T.M. functions found on most other 'hole-in-the-wall' machines. I put in my cashcard and pressed the relevant keys in order to pay in the cheque. I put the cheque in the slot as indicated, to have it immediately rejected and spat out unceremoniously. I had thought that I had managed to put it in the slot in the correct way, as indicated by the illustration shown on screen. But again it was rejected. It grabbed the cheque in a very brisk fashion. Can't they programme a machine to at least have a few manners? Doesn't seem they can. I attempted this action several more times, much to the amusement of the lady who was waiting to use the thing behind me. I then decided, when the cheque was thown back at me for around the sixth time to give up on the whole process, and was about to queue up to use the traditional method of payment, through a human being behind a desk (the whole purpose, supposedly, of having the automated system would have been to cut down on having to queue.) I went to another machine the other end of the banking hall, and this one worked perfectly, without a single hitch. How can one machine be so difficult, and the other work perfectly? What particularly annoyed me was that none of the Nationwide staff who where nearby made any effort to help resolve the problem with the machine. I was always under the impression that their staff were quite helpful, so this has really changed my view of them.
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