Dear NTUC Income.

Last year, I wrote about how convenient your service was when it came to renewing my motorcycle insurance.


Motorcycle insurance renewal letter: no, I'm not interested in calling my agent or your 24-hour customer service hotline! I just want to click a button and give you my money!


NTUC Income Online: where is the renew button for me to renew my motorcycle insurance?

What is – I don’t even – which hamster told you that customers are desirous of this heinous pigletry???

I don’t want to “call [my] agent or [your] 24-hour hotline” because I don’t need to talk to a human being to do this.

I just want to click a button and give you my money so that you can insure Le Poots and I – that is all.

Like what you see in this picture here, just in case you’ve forgotten what convenience and customer service is all about:

Customer service and convenience, circa 2010.

At the same time, it seems my premium has increased to $322.58. Why?

If you think this is an uneducated grouse, don’t worry – I know what the basic principles of insurance entail.

Nevertheless, my question centres on a logical Key Performance Indicator that all efficient insurers should adopt (or should have at least adopted), and that is: insurers must aim to maintain or reduce the year-on-year premiums that a customer has to pay.

But why can’t insurers meet that aim in Singapore?

Is it because of:

I have no ready answers.

But if anything, ladies and gentlemen, this is yet another reason why we need honest and customer-oriented people in charge of the organisations and institutions in our country.

The Geragoks will save us all.

"Ender Will Save Us All" by Dashboard Confessional - link to music video.

Well, not really. Anyway, the title of this post is from “Ender Will Save Us All” by Dashboard Confessional.

So what happened today:

  • I needed to buy a certain household item,
  • I decided to call up hardware retail outlets, namely Home-Fix and SelfFix, to check if said item was in stock before going down so I wouldn’t have to make a wasted trip,
  • None of the salespersons were helpful at all! I called up five or six outlets; they were all, like, “Sorry, don’t have.”
  • When I was, like, “Can you please help me check if the other outlets stock this item?”, they were all, like, “Sorry, cannot hehe~!”

Enter the Dragon.

No – enter this (presumably) Geragok girl called Sarah Shepherdson who works at one of Home-Fix’s outlets.

Sarah not only helped me check to see which outlet stocked said product; she called up the outlet to verify if the product was in stock before calling me back to update me on her findings – within six minutes.

So I e-mailed Home-Fix and told them that she’s a good girl and they have to promote her to General Manager and give a raise of $20 million.

No lah, I just said something along the lines of her being A BEACON IN AN OCEAN OF IGNORAMUSES and the company should produce more Sarah Shepherdsons to save the world.

Their reply?

Dear Mr Lee,

We are delighted to hear that Ms Sarah Shepherdson our staff from [outlet], had (sic) provided excellent service to you for the enjoyable shopping experience with Home-Fix. This specially dedicated compliment for Ms Sarah Shepherdson, (sic) will definitely put her in good stead for the Service Excellence Award.

In Home-Fix, we take good customer service seriously by conducting trainings (sic) and sending our staff to attend courses to improve their knowledge and skills. We encourage (sic) and hope to instill our values and cultures to (sic) our staff for (sic) customer service.

This experience has affirmed our belief that the (sic) positive attitude from our staff is very essential to build and maintain a good image of our company.

We sincerely thank you for your compliment. We would like to take this opportunity to invite you to join our Hands-On membership program & (sic) would like to reward you with 50 Goodwill points as a token of appreciation for your feedback.

Kindly reply (sic) us with your (sic) following details… .

We look forward to serve (sic) you better each time you visit us at our stores.
Your voice is the reason we succeed.

J*zz. The asterisk stands for an ‘a’.