Yesterday we went to the municipal building (home affairs) which is 5 minutes down the road from us. We needed to do a few things. We needed to change Faiths name on our ID because at the airport (where we received our original ID documents) they spelt it in Hebrew as Fais instead of Faith or Fait (they can’t really pronounce the ‘th’ sound). We also needed to change our address as they put the wrong area on the ID books and in order to register the kids for school we need the correct address. We also needed to register the kids in their respective schools.
The first stop was school registration and that office opened at 13h30. The lady was extremely helpful and got Aaron registered quickly. We then had to find a Gan (kindergarten) for Faith. She found one directly behind our apartment. We can see the playground from our bedroom window! So awesome.
The lady who helped us with the school registration then directed us to the office next door where we had to go to change the address and name details. That office only opened at 14h30 and it was only 14h05 so we sat around for a bit. Just before 14h30 a lady came and manned a small desk by the waiting area, she gave us a number and then explained the how the waiting system worked. Our number flashed up on the screen and in we went. Now this is the amazing part, we sat down, explained the address change, showed the woman our lease to prove the address, she clicked away on the computer, pressed print and handed us our new document. In less than 5 min! No payment, no waiting 10 working days to collect the document. Just done!
We hit a small snag with Faiths name as they wanted to see her birth certificate so we went home, got it and Paul went back and wham bam thank you ma’am, it was done. No mess no fuss.
Efficiency seems to be a thing here. We ordered SIM cards from a company called 012 Smile and we ordered home internet through Bezeq. Not only did the SIM cards get delivered when they said they would, we received a phone call first to make sure we were home to receive them. The same with the internet connection, the technician called to make sure we were home and in 5 min he was ringing our bell. The gas guy also called last week before he arrived and in fact he called to say he was available earlier than our allotted time and did we mind if he came early? Hell no we don’t mind, come on in.
Its going to be pretty easy to get used to this kind of service.
2 Replies to “Prepare to be amazed!”
First world countries FTW!
The efficiency and general helpfulness of government administration was one of my favourite things about Dubai, too. I can’t speak for anywhere else because I haven’t lived in any other countries.
But this type of thing is one of the main things I feel is sorely lacking in South Africa and which, if we could change just it, would make such an incredible difference to the quality of life here.
I have often toyed with the idea of starting up a Service School, where anyone can enroll on any number of courses to do with customer service, from Manners 101 (being present in the exchange with the customer, not having a conversation with your colleague while you attend to them, being polite, if not friendly, etc.) all the way through to Efficient Document Routing and Handling for Service Professionals. I’d make a packet if I could get buy-in from government departments in training their staff!