# Online banking usability

By Murray Bourne, 13 May 2006

I recently got a companion card for The Wife. It is linked to my main OCBC (Oversea Chinese Banking Corporation) credit card.

I have my card set up so that it is paid automatically in full each month through GIRO (a system allowing for electronic interbank payments to various billing companies like utilities, traffic fines and the like).

i assumed (wrongly) that since I was ultimately responsible for paying companion card debts, that it would be handled through the existing GIRO arrangement. Nope. I had to apply for another GIRO arrangement for the companion card.

Okay, no biggie. But not totally straightforward, either. They sent us each an oddly shaped companion to the companion card, so now there are 3 credit card numbers - the original companion card number plus these new ones.

I applied online for the GIRO payment. The interface is okay, but not brilliant. Where should I go for my GIRO application - "GIRO" or "Application"?

I found the form and happily filled it in. I felt I should put a payment limit in case there was a fraud attempt. Then I didn’t know which credit card number to apply (the Bill Reference Number) for since my online account only has one number for the companion card.

My first application was rejected (via a notice in the post a week after the application). It appears that the application should not include a payment limit. Okay, it is stated at the top (which I only noticed later, of course):

Payment Limit − you can use this to set a maximum amount which the Billing Organisation can deduct from your deposit account. If the amount requested exceeds this limit, the deduction will not be processed.
Important: Please leave this field blank for OCBC Credit Card payments

My questions:

• Why not include the directive about payment limit on the form, rather than above it?
• Better still, why not program the form so that the limit box does not appear?
• Why reject the application with a limit? Just ignore it and inform the customer in the confirmation letter.
• How come it needs to go through GIRO when it is the same bank? (from OCBC account to OCBC credit card)
• Why so many numbers, yet billing only involves 1 number?
• What does GIRO stand for? (No Google search would bring it up - ah, Singapore and its love of indecipherable acronyms)

I finally got confirmation for one of the numbers so I’m not sure if that will suffice. Will have to wait for the next billing cycle.

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