Thursday, May 27, 2010

Bureaucracyat its finest!

A week has passed and I am now looking forward to the weekend and trying to reflect on how quickly it has gone...

One thing that stands out though is a run-in with our accounts department over the payment of my electricity and water.  My company pays for these things but the power companies are very slack on getting their money so I had been slack and not paid my bill for six months.

Each month, I got a bill and a balance owing and I kept saying "I should pay that" but never did.  Eventually, with the bill at 7,500 dirhams I paid it.  I took my invoice and paid and got the receipt.  No worries.

Then I sent the original invoice and the original receipt with the expense claim to work and asked for the 7,500 dirhams back.  It went through the system and was approved for payment.

Then on Tuesday I get an email saying that my payment of 1,600 dirhams will be made at the end of the week.

1,600??  Um, a bit short I think!  I emailed and called the accounts department but got no response so I turned up yesterday and demanded to see someone.  I got an elderly assistant manager type who informed me that they only pay bills month to month and that they were only paying the most recent month.  I said "what about the prior five months?"

"Do you have invoices for the prior months?  If so, submit them."  I am now confused.  I explain I have ONE invoice for six months TOTALING 7,500 dirhams and I have a receipt as proof of payment.  "Oh we don't care about receipts, just invoices" was his reply.  I asked why is that and he went on to explain that they only pay on monthly invoices because it prevents people claiming months more than once.  Huh??? I am now very confused.

He said if I submit an invoice and get the money but don't pay, then I could rort the system by then claiming the next months invoice with two months worth of expenses and so on.  Therefore, if they limit their payouts to singular months, then they cannot be rorted.

"BUT I HAVE A RECEIPT!" I said.  "I have a genuine original receipt showing I paid 6 months in one hit" I explained.  Again, he refused this argument because they dont pay on receipts, just invoices.  He suggests I send each months invoice to them to be paid and they will give me the cash irrespective if I pay the power company.  Crazy.

I then said "but you know I am not rorting the system because you can see my payment history and you know I haven't claimed any money for six months".

His response:  "Oh, our system doesn't keep record of payments out".


Crazy.  If anyone wants to get a job running an accounts payable system or you're an internal auditor who wants to have a field day, let me know!

I have months 4 and 5 invoices in my briefcase... I may have some others at home, but this is absolutely crazy logic!


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Hoping you have a wonderful week filled with inspiration and laughter,

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Josephina Finchworth said...

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