I cannot stand inefficiencies. I have no patience for people, companies, or agencies wasting my time, or anyone else’s. I take it as a sign of severe disrespect.
What’s worse is when one’s time is wasted and the process is causing additional harm; like damaging the environment and the planet. What’s even far worse is when one’s time is wasted, the process is causing additional harm, and the entire incident is asinine and could have easily been avoided.
Yesterday I experienced the far worse case scenario which prompted me to write this post.
Recently I changed the name of one of my companies in the State of Florida. I am the biggest fan the State of Florida has. I feel like I live in paradise and in the near future cannot imagine why anyone would live anywhere else. For anyone that does business in the State you know that SunBiz.org really does a great job of almost anything you need to do online relating to companies, searches, and filings.
One exception is when you need to do a name change. In a perfect world it should just be completely automated and handled online with a credit card payment like our annual reports. Instead you actually need to print up an amendment and mail it in with a check. Imagine the total negative impact on the environment of the wasted ink from my printer, the 3-4 pages of paper being printed, the written check, the envelope, and the stamp.
That’s just the beginning. Then there’s the trip I had to make to get that letter into the hands of the USPS. In this case I actually drove to the post office to mail it with another letter, that could have been filed online, because I needed a return receipt for proof of deliver. Then the USPS has to do their job which I am sure includes multiple truck rides and probably a plane ride to get the letter to Tallahassee. All spewing carbon emissions along the way.
But the above craziness, as bad as it is, is not what set me off and is not the primary reason for this post.
After a few weeks passed, I saw that the name was successfully changed and that the amendment was clearly visible online at SunBiz.org. Before physically heading out to a Wells Fargo branch to update the name on my company’s checking account I checked to see if I could do this online. After all it is 2019 and why wouldn’t the big banks have some of the best technology available to them? Common sense would also dictate that automation of a process like this would not waste the time of a banker and would ultimately make for a better customer experience, while making the bank more profitable, and actually saving the environment?
Apparently Wells Fargo does not share my ideas on common sense and efficiencies.
There was no online option so I had the physically drive to the branch to try and accomplish this. I walked in, sat down, and handed the banker my drivers license and debit card and explained that the filing was completed and we just needed to update the title of the checking account to reflect the new company name. I figured I would be out of the bank in under five minutes.
The banker proceeded to tell me that the branch could not print out online filings from SunBiz.org? How pathetic is that? Wells Fargo, a $200+ Billion company, with almost 600 branches in the State of Florida, can not print a simple four page filing from the State of Florida’s official corporate site, to handle a name change for an existing customer. I did a quick look around to see if I was on Candid Camera as I tried to catch the humor in all this.
I am not sure why the filing would even need to be printed in the first place, unless we just feel like wasting our time for shits and giggles all while f$cking the planet already harder than we already are.
Shouldn’t a manager just be able to view the screen and make an executive decision that the SunBiz filing is satisfactory to then quickly update the name on the account? That would just make too much sense?
As I was driving home to print up the filing my blood started to boil. The audacity of this bloated, inefficient monopoly to just be able to waste 30 minutes of my life for such a mundane task that should literally take a few mouse clicks from my office. Luckily the branch is only a few miles from my home and the whole thing was wrapped up in about an hour.
Again in a near perfect world both processes, the name change filing with Florida, and the account update with Wells, should have been handled online with me exerting less than 10 minutes while minimizing the negative effects on the environment. It is hard to break down all of the events involved in all of the above processes, but to me it is blatantly apparent that the amount of energy and resources involved, to accomplish something that is so simple, is about as inefficient as the whole ordeal could possibly be orchestrated.
The planet is a ticking time bomb. If we don’t stop and think of ways to cut down on paper, and wasted energy, and wasted time we are clearly to blame for what’s about to happen. Anyone not paying attention is either in denial, just plain stupid, or acting out an alternate selfish agenda which is not for the greater good.
Excuses cannot be made for institutions like the State of Florida and Wells Fargo. They have the power to be smarter and make a difference. I see this type of stupidity happening again and again which tells me that they must just not give a shit.
If humanity doesn’t wake up and start making small changes our most certain demise can only be our own fault. This whole thing makes me very sad.
Also published on Medium.