Consistency is one of the driver to Customer Satisfaction Matrix

Just before I start my ranting, I find the following article is very useful and interesting by McKinsey. It can be found here.

I was browsing SingTel website and something chanced upon my eyes! Please see below:

Capture

If for any reason, you can’t see the image, it reads “$80 OFF with more data“. Feeling happy at first sight because I am really looking at SingTel DataX add-ons plan that is accompanied with one of the Combo plan. An example of the offerings can be found below or the link above.

Capture1

So from as low as $5.90/month, you will get two times your bundled data that you have associated with the respective Combo plans that you signed up with. With my usage which is on the high side (I uses around 10GB of local data) from the 13.5GB (base 12GB from Combo 12 plan and 0.5GB for each MobileShare line that I signed up for) of data that I have in my bucket. It does make sense that I go for the Data X Infinity which gives me a whopping 50GB (as per advertised, it is “unlimited“) of 4G data on top of the data that I have as part of my Combo plan.

I ring up SingTel Customer Care (via 1688) and have a chat with the Customer Services Officer (CSO) with regards to the plans that I have and the following is what I have gathered.

Conversation with Customer Services Officer (CSO)

  • The $80 OFF with more data is for selected customers and it is totally up to the Sales Team to decide who are entitled to it.
  • As my contract ends only on Feb 2018, I have to pay a penalty of approximately $178 for the downgrade/early re-contract.
  • I have $500 voucher that can be used to offset the purchase of the iPhone 8.

Feeling happy and also sceptical at times with how big organization like Singapore Telecommunications work, so I decided to swing by the main shop at ComCentre to check out more

I have to admit that the sale of iPhone 8 is kind of terrible this time round likely because:

  1. It is because more and more people are moving to the SIM-only plans which forces them to get phones off the shelf which is directed at Apple Store.
  2. It is because people are still waiting for the arrival of iPhone X before deciding whether to stick back to iPhone 8 instead.
  3. Everyone does the purchase online and have the phones delivered to their doorstep instead.

So it was pretty quick till my turn to speak to one of the Sales Executive over the counter. I explained the same as per what I have told over the phone with the CSO and out to my surprise I get responses from them as such:

Conversation with Sales Executive over at ComCentre

  • The $80 OFF with more data is for all NEW customers. (SORRY to those being loyal. It doesn’t pay to be loyal!) – We all know this are just marketing strategies, but look, there are 3 other telcos out there for consumer to choose. 🙂
  • Based on the monthly subscription of $239.90 and with 4 months left over to the end of the contract, the penalty would be over $900. (I went “WUUTTT” the moment that was broken out from the Sales Executive mouth without double checking through the system).
  • After double checking, the fee that I have to bear will be $200.63 (instead of ~$178) due to GST charges.
  • I will have to bear another $200 charges before GST due to early renewal or wait till November 2017 where I am 3 months before the expiry of the contract.

So what is the conclusion?

Isn’t SingTel employees using one single system (single source of truth) to manage all customers request? Why do customer get bits and pieces of information from different sources?

Where is the consistency?

No doubt each of us will have to be tied down to a Mobile provider but since SingTel can’t manages such an incident, how do people entrust another 24 months contract with them? I am not siding any other telcos as I have consumed services from StarHub and MobileOne before in the past and I felt that SingTel does have it standards there.

I am not ranting this because I am demanding for an explanation, but all I want is the awareness to organisations who does the same thing as how SingTel is treating the customers, then you are out at not keeping customer and at the same time degrading the value marked by the customers.

Hope things will change for the better and I would stay put with my mobile lines for now or even explore Circles.Life with their contract-less plans.

Cheers,
Milton

Consistency is one of the driver to Customer Satisfaction Matrix

Is localization important?

The question is:

Is localization important?

The following questions pops up to target at different actors:

  • Is localization important to end-users?
  • How do organization provide localization?
  • Does organization require to provide localization?
  • Without localization, will you still consume the service?
  • Is this act a big or small one to consumers?

There are many ways to post these questions and there will be many different opinions from people from all walks of life. So what exactly I am referring to?

Well, I am a regular Grab user for a long time and I almost use it for my daily commute for personal/work purposes. On the latest updates that was released the last two weeks, I suddenly saw the following on my Grab App.

Wow, the starting of some “Singlish“. There is “Ah” at the statement in the above image. Next is:

One more… “Pai Sei”. What does this means? Well, it meant “Sorry” in english or the meaning that is extracted from the Wikipedia.

Means to be embarrassed. Usually used as an apology after making an embarrassing mistake. From Hokkien 歹勢 (pháiⁿ-sè).

This is so into the daily commuters life, at least for those who resides in Singapore for a period of time.

There we go again, “Alamak” is being used here. The meaning is as close to:

Phonetically close to the Chinese term “Oh, my mother!”. It expresses shock or surprise.

Gosh, these may be something that is really small to changed and managed by the Grab Engineering Team for each Country to be localized. However, all these small and effective efforts does made a different to the end-users life.

Initially, when I saw it, I could immediately made fun of it when I read it but it also kind of amused me when there isn’t any Grab drivers without the area that wants to pick me up which is kind of disappointing.

Therefore, this gives me a little bit of mixed feelings. 😉

However, kudos to the Engineering Team in Grab that develops these and also to the person who thought of such idea! I am looking forward in using Grab services to all the places that I travel so that I could see how far such localization is being done up.

Cheers,
Milton

Is localization important?

Love-Hate Relationship with Clutter in Outlook

In such a fast-pace technology world, features are released quicker than anyone can afford to learn everything. Recently I am getting lots of feedback from co-workers or customers saying that they have dropped me an email but I have not responded in a manner that I used to. (P/S: I read mails everywhere, on my laptop, my iPad and my mobile phone. Email has become an integral part of me.)

So I had a thought on why emails are not falling into my “Inbox“? With a little searching around, I saw that my mails has been falling into:

“Junk Email” folder has been a pain too, but of course with certain help in mitigating spam mails from flowing through, but What is Clutter?!

Copying off the article:-

In Outlook 2016 for Windows, “Clutter” can help you filter low-priority email, saving time for your most important messages. If Clutter isn’t for you, you can TURN IT OFF.

So what are typically treated as “Low-Priority“?

Ooooo. So, notifications from Wunderlist is being treated as “Low-Priority”. So what’s the point of having an email reminder?

Like what is mentioned in the block quote above, there are means to toggle “on/off” for this feature depending on individual. All one have to do is to logon to the Office 365 Outlook Web Access (OWA) via https://outlook.office365.com/ and right-click on the “Inbox” to access to the “Clutter settings” as shown below.

You will arrive at the page similar to the image below.

If you love this feature, do nothing!

If you dislike this feature, un-check the highlighted checkbox and “save”!

Provide your feedback to me and let me know your thoughts on this feature!

Cheers,
Milton

Love-Hate Relationship with Clutter in Outlook

Fedex – Review YOUR scheduled jobs.

From the above image, do you see what I see as an “error”? Well, if not, let me point it to you.

  1. This message was received at 7.56 PM.
  2. Reading through the content of this text, it says I have up to 8.00 PM to decide if I would like to opt for self-collection.

Come on FedEx, are you testing your consumer speed in terms of responding to texts OR are you trying to say that the cut-off time is not valid and even if I go past that timing, it will still work?

In the natural human behaviour, I would wait for my parcel/package to be delivered to my doorstep rather than needing to pick it up unless I am in a superb urgency that I need the content of the parcel/package.

I know it is a goodwill of FedEx that they are offering a varieties of options for consumer to “choose”, but please take into consideration of how the system is being designed! You are adversely upsetting your consumer by treating them like super-human. I strongly believe that this will be a cycle where this feature will be deprecated sooner than expected because of the pickup rate.

An enterprise / organisation such as FedEx would (should) have designed it with the best user experience to the end users. Always remember that AdoptionGovernance comes after!

Just my 2 cents worth of my rumbling thoughts.

Cheers,
Milton

Fedex – Review YOUR scheduled jobs.

Hooray! My Third Year as Microsoft MVP!

Hoooooorrrrayyyyy! I am back as a Microsoft MVP as I received the email this morning at 1am (GMT +8).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have to admit that it comes with a mixed feeling as I was in Manila for one of the PowerShell User Group meet-up in Microsoft Philippines office.  During my opening, I did my usual introduction but with the deep feelings that, “Due to the timezone, I am no longer a Microsoft MVP as I am set to expire on 1st July 2017.“. Of course, this isn’t quite valid as if I am swing back to the Seattle (Microsoft HQ) timezone, then I am still a Microsoft MVP!

Took the afternoon flight from Manila back to Singapore and the feeling of “getting renewed” is bothering me as I aren’t sure if I will be a shiny Microsoft MVP when I wake up the next day in my timezone. Through my night yesterday, I keep browsing Twitter under the #MVPBuzz hashtag and see many ways of how other MVPs who are like me trying to find out if they get renewed. The tension got worst through the day when I start seeing negative tweets from fellow MVPs whom their Community Program Manager (CPM) has already informed them they are being retired from the program and move over to the Reconnect program. Moreover, fellow PowerShell MVPs also start sending farewell messages through the Distribution List (DL) and it just creates another sinking moments.

OK, enough of those negative news and I have strong faith with those whom have retired yesterday will all get back to the Team really really soon!

I am really thankful to Microsoft and fellow MVPs who have helped me through this journey. It is really a long journey, lots of fun and tough times as we are battling between work commitment and living up the community spirits. I am glad that I am given the chance and the recognition and I promise that in the next 12 months, my community contributions will be soaring to the next height.

Cheers,
Milton

Hooray! My Third Year as Microsoft MVP!

Microsoft Azure: Schedule an Auto-Shutdown

Today when I was meddling with my Virtual Machine (VM) in Microsoft Azure, I chanced upon this new feature known as “Auto-shutdown” under the section “Schedules” although this was originally released in November 2016. The piece of news can be found here. With this naming, it tells it all that Microsoft is helping us consumers to save some costs! (Thanks Microsoft!) #MicrosoftIsGreat.

Azure-AutoShutDown-01

Clicking on it further brings me into this simple form.

Azure-AutoShutDown-03

As you can see that this form is rather simple to operate which also means that it is missing some features that I can think off immediately upon seeing this.

Azure-AutoShutDown-04

Microsoft Azure team has built this feature to allow you to shut down at anytime at your convenience which is down right the whole purpose of this. I faced with tons of issues with time zone where I set an alarm at 6pm (GMT +7) and after a flight, it does rang only at the specified time zone even I return to my home land which is in (GMT +8).

One of the immediate limitation of this is, once you scheduled a time to have the resource to be shut down. It will be on run on a daily basis, which means that I will need to manually start the Virtual Machine if I need to. Well, a list of awesome features that I hope to see on this Schedules will be:

1) Auto-StartUp – Automatically start the resource if it is not in the Stopped State at a specified time.

2) Allow more granular control such as:

  • Control by Shutting down on a specified day of the week/month
  • Control by Starting up on a specified day of the week/month

3) What is better is, if I can even start/stop a resource by using my Mobile Device (regardless of Email/Mobile Application)

Cheers,
Milton

Microsoft Azure: Schedule an Auto-Shutdown

Goodbye 2016, Hello 2017! What’s new ahead?

In a couple of hours from now, we will be bidding farewell to Year 2016 and welcome Year 2017! It is one of those posts that I have written every year to re-look at what have I done within the year and some of the goals that I am looking at achieving in 2017. The post that I wrote in Year 2015 can be found here – Goodbye Twenty Fifteen, Hello Twenty Sixteen.

 

Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP)

In April this year, I was re-awarded the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) award by Microsoft but this time it has been rebranded to Cloud and Datacenter Management technical expertise. It has been an exciting journey so far as this is my second award by Microsoft. I enjoy spending time advocating the various technology to the community especially in the area of PowerShell and automation.

 

Condeco Software

Today marks the completion of 12 months with Condeco Software and to be honest, it has really been a busy year as a Technical Consultant within the Asia Pacific side of the organization. Practically, every single day we are filled with tasks be it is a Challenge, a Simple Task or Meeting(s) that keep all of us busy!

I had so much fun being able to be part of all the transition within the organization especially where we are kick-start the utilization of Microsoft Azure as part of the public cloud solution to support our Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) business. What it means to our customers is that, we do care about your overall user experience and we are there to present you with the best at all times!

 

Travel

Travel_Countries_Travelled

One great point about working as a Regional Technical Consultant that covers the Asia Pacific region, it means that we are readily made ourselves available to the customer so that we can shower them with our professionalism and at the same time some care which they deserved to ensure they are ripping every benefits out of the investments.

Of course, with that to say, it does not means that for my whole year of travel which covers 4% of the world is solely for work! I do have fun in Seattle (Washington, United States) to attend to the MVP Summit that is hosted by Microsoft. It is one of the great session where you get to interact with the product teams and meet other fellow technology lovers. On top of that, I am so honoured to be able to sit in the same room with other fellow PowerShell Conference Organizer on the other side of the world to do up a video for the PowerShell 10th Anniversary. The video can be found here.

 

How many goals was achieved?

So how many goals that I have set in December 2015 has been achieved in Year 2016?

I was suppose to be an Avid Reader but I guess I pretty much failed this point because I have not completed even a single book till now. For this, I have to bluntly admit that I failed to do so and this shall be carry forward to Year 2017 and hoping this time my perseverance can pull me through!

Secondly, my goal was to be a better Leader in my new job role and I have to say that I did made some advancement in that area and all thanks to my current manager(s) that made it possible. I personally would like to thank Nicholas Yap (Operations Director, APAC) who is my reporting manager for guiding me all these while and opens up a lot of opportunities for me! Without the kind of support at the backend, it would not be possible to shape me in who I am. I am happy and more than willing to work with him to strengthen the team!

Lastly, for all the work that has been done to the PowerShell Community, I am really honoured to say that we have completed the second PowerShell Conference in Asia and we are looking at organizing the third one that will be held around the same timing as the last two years.

 

Finally, what’s next?

There are of course many a times where we do lesson learnt during times when we failed to achieve some tasks or goals. However, I think over the last 12 months, I have grew much more stronger than before and the following will be the rules that I am trying to adhere.

  • Strengthen the product knowledge – One of the key that I would like to achieve in this year is to thoroughly understand the product my company is offering as I felt that there are a lot into it that has yet been covered as it may not be that commonly being used. It is vital as the Evangelist within the organization to be able to understand what the customers do not understand, know more than what the customers should know and do the impossible for the customers within the limit within the Engineering practice.
  • Strengthen the presentation skills – One of my weakest link is that I felt and I am pretty sure many felt the same is that my presentation skills isn’t that well polished yet and therefore need improvement work on it.
  • Excel and go beyond – In year 2017, I hope to excel even more not only for myself but for my customers and partners. To excel and overcome any issues and potential risks. Go beyond and bend the rule as that will be another challenge up for me as a technical folk!

Cheers and Happy New Year to all the readers to this site!

Regards,
Milton

Goodbye 2016, Hello 2017! What’s new ahead?