Sunday, April 22, 2012

Nightmare Staff From Vietnam

My company’s audit department has been undergoing expansion as the audit partners have been marketing the company’s services. I was not surprised to see a whole new batch of auditors joining us.

However, one of them, who hails from Vietnam was pretty odd. He kept asking us to lend him the Singapore Tax Workbook. He does not need to do up tax provisions as it is already being done by my department. I told him to check with my bosses and manager. Each time, when he failed to get what he wanted, he would show an angry  face.

I was quite stunned on 2 Fridays ago that the security of my office building were called in. Apparently, the audit partners had asked him to leave the company after they could not tolerate his nonsense any longer, but he refused and tried to delete the company’s server files.

The managing partner was shocked by his actions and told me that he do not wish to hire foreign staff again except for Malaysians after this.

There Is A Limit To What You Can Do Sometimes

A friend of mine, whom I recommended to work in my company as an admin support cum tax assistant was finally asked to leave the job on Tuesday.

Although I was a little sad that she had been asked to leave, I was glad that the nightmare of checking her work filled with careless mistakes by my bosses, the admin senior & myself was finally over. I had not expect that she was able to make simple addition errors that a kindergarten school child would get it right. She could waste tons of the company’s letterheads, just because of these little careless errors.

My female boss had wanted to keep her and kept giving her chances. I tried my best to coach her wherever possible, but I guessed her careless mistakes was too overwhelming for us to keep her. I told my boss frankly when she sought for my opinion about her performance. I told my boss that if she felt that my friend’s performance was not up to mark, she should just do what she deems fit, as I do not wish to put her in a difficult position either.

I told this friend of mine that these 2 and a half months had been a nightmare for me as I felt that I had grown very much older, due to the amount of mistakes she made, the need to accompany her home sometimes, when it is hard for me, as due to the peak period, there are a lot of work to be cleared. There were also instances that her mistakes or things that she did caused me to nag at her. I even shouted at her once, as the mistake she made at work was really unacceptable.

Most of our common friends understood how I felt and thought that I did the right thing. I hope my mid-term bonus is not affected by this, and I have to really work my way back to regain my reputation, no thanks to this friend. 

E-Filing Volunteer Session 8

The final session of the volunteer e-filing session was like what has happened throughout the volunteer e-filing sessions this year. It was littered with technical problems.
I was greeted by Ms Yvonne Yim from the IRAS Corporate Communications Department at the start of the session. Apparently, she was there to see for herself how the technical problems unfolded before her eyes. Gary & I were pleased with her presence, as she is not defensive in trying to hide the fact that  the system had some problems. She was also helpful as she offered to help me with some of the taxpayers’ e-filing when the crowd got a little long and was quite forthcoming to listen to our views.
I just hope that with our inputs, the system can be improved further.

Sunday, April 08, 2012

Volunteer E-Filing Session 5–IRAS Officers Visit

When I stepped into the Serangoon CC, I was told by the liaison officer, Juncai, that IRAS Corporate Communications Officer, Ms Stacey Wong, will be paying a visit, in view of the technical problems, which our CC faced at the e-filing sessions.
I was quite disturbed by the fact that the problems were still there, despite Juncai telling me that the computers used by me & my partner, Haris, were reformatted and the operating system were reloaded. This year, we really feel that we have to beat the clock, as the problems would occur at unexpectedly short time.
Stacey and her IT colleagues were stunned by Haris’ and my speed in processing the e-filing for the e-filers. We managed to e-file in 3 to 5 mins for most cases, but yet, we are unable to beat the system clock sometimes.
Let’s hope I do not encounter these problems today, as I really fear that the crowd coming in may spiral out of control.

The Hunger Games

I was asked by Xiuling, if I wanted to catch this movie. Since I was feeling stressed due to my work & volunteer commitments, I thought a movie outing for me will deflect some of my stress away.

This was one of the early morning movies, as we did not wish to squeeze with the crowds and I had IRAS Volunteer e-filing to do in the afternoon. I was lucky that I booked the tickets as the ticketing assistant was rather slow in issuing the tickets to those who purchase them on the spot. I guess the ticketing assistant is new, or have not been perked up by the morning cup of coffee.

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I thought that the movie was very good. pretty action packed and it really showcase the good side & bad side of human nature. I would recommend all of you to catch it if possible.

 

Friday, April 06, 2012

Colleague’s Simple Wedding Dinner

My colleague, Anna had gotten married in her home country in Burma last December and decided to host a simple wedding dinner for us at Carousel at Royal Plaza on Scotts.

She had chosen this place as we had a Malay colleague, and she have heard that the food was good. I told her that she was right as I have been there countless times with my ACCA classmates and we always enjoyed the good food and good service there.

In the end, the whole tax department & whole corporate secretarial department attended the event. Anna took my bosses’ advice and did not invite anyone from the accounts department & audit department, in view of the recent bad blood between us and them.

May I take the opportunity to wish Anna and her hubby a happy & blissful marriage.

IRAS Volunteer E-Filing Sessions

This is my 9th year joining this exercise, which I would describe as the toughest year since I joined in the Year 2005.

I am surprised that the technical problems that plagued the e-filing system almost every year had reared its head this year. It was so bad that I really had to email to those people involved in this year exercise as the issue went viral on the IRAS e-filing Volunteers Facebook Page, for which I am the leader of the page.

I hope the problems have been resolved as this coming two weekends will be crowded at the 23 Citizen Connect Centres as some people are just fond of doing their tax returns at the last moments.

I hope the system can handle our tax filings tomorrow.

Dealing With Mad Dogs @ Work

Firstly, my sincere apologies to the readers of my blog. I have not been able to update my recent happenings around me as:-

  1. There is a new colleague who joined my firm and she happens to be my friend, therefore I had to spend some time to train her up. It is tough training a person, especially if the person is new to this line of work. I hope she has performed well enough to let my boss confirm her job in the company next month.
  2. My busy work schedule. The time of the year has arrived again, where most people have problems filing their taxes. As tax agent, we have to ensure that our client’s tax submission is complete within the stipulated date (15 April for paper filing & 18 April for e-filing) in an accurate manner. Coupled with the late filings & tax queries, I was really drained to the max!
  3. My IRAS Volunteer e-filing sessions. Despite my busy work schedule, I felt that I should still contribute to the Volunteer e-filing sessions, as I know that the taxpayers will definitely need my assistance and with my knowledge gained from my studies & work in the area, I would be able to save some taxpayers from going to IRAS should they encounter problems filing their tax return. There were technical issues encountered in the e-filing this year and I am glad that it is finally resolved after two weeks of mayhem.

I was particularly pissed off by two of the managing partners of the audit arm of my firm recently.

  1. One of them pointed an accusing finger at me & my manager that I drafted an e-mail reply to a potential client. To think he vented his fury at me and slammed my table nearly made me a little disillusioned recently. I had absolutely no idea about the contents of the e-mail, as my department had been busy with trying to meet the personal tax deadline for our clients. I told my managing partner what happened. I was glad that she supports and trust me as a staff. In fact, we shared some views about the recent happenings in the firm. I guessed without her support, I would have raised the white flag.
  2. The other, had commented that my department had made too much noise at work, disturbing other people. This caused my managing partner to issue a circular stating we could only discuss work related problems during our lunch break or after work. I feel that this partner should manage her own staff first, as I always hear her and the audit staff gossiping about other stuffs, other than work at office. Not only that, as a partner, you plug in to your handphone radio, that’s why your staff follow you as the saying goes “Monkey see, monkey do.” Respect needs to be earned, not accorded.

Hopefully, I am still in one piece after this peak period after 18 April. =)

A Happy Mothers’ Day to All Mums Out There

A Happy Mothers’ Day to All Mums Out There It has once again been a while since I last blogged as I was a little busy with my work and other...