Saturday, April 27, 2013


Thursday I went up to my local bank (the mega-institution BB&T) to deposit a couple of checks.  As usual, I filled in the deposit form, signed the checks, and stuffed them in the deposit envelop.  

I guess I should have realized something was happening when I got to the bank and saw two people in line to use the ATM.  Both of them spent a couple of minutes at the machine before turning away with a look of sheer disgust and frustration on their faces.

My turn and I realize what's happened.  BB&T has changed their ATM machines.  I guess the concept was to make things easier for the customer, but they completely failed.   Interestingly the switch out  was done without any notice.  I can see why.  The new machines are worthless.  The human factors design in these things is non-existant and  I can see why people gave up in frustration.  It took me three shots at it to deposit a pair of checks and the system managed to mis-credit a three hundred dollar check to my account as an eight hundred dollar deposit.  Mind you, I don't mind them giving me an extra $500, but I doubt that's a good growth strategy for the bank.

Anyhow, the major change is that you no longer need to use the old fashioned deposit slips and envelops which I guess is a time saver for all involved.  Unfortunately the on-line guides are confusing and having the machine beep every couple of seconds is a major irritation.  Even trying to figure out which receipt you want is painful.  When the system "read" my check value wrong ($800 versus $300), there was no apparent way to fix the mistake.

Out of frustration I ended up going through the drive through window.  When I explained what had transpired, the ten year old bank clerk (looking like he'd just gotten to work after an all day rave), essentially indicated I was old and stupid for not knowing out to work their state-of-the-art ATM and there was nothing he could do about it.  Okay, you just credited and extra $500 to my account.  I'm fine with that.  

I'd previously transferred my savings account to a different entity (go Navy Federal Credit Union) and this essentially pushed me within an inch of closing my BB&T checking account.  Excellent customer service there guys.  Ya should be quite proud.

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