... once upon a time ... a long long time ago ...

Small satchets of happenings from pockets of my life, as lapses of memories rewind to the particular place, moment and time ... realities of life
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Friday, May 23, 2008

Banking was Manual (Cheque Clearing)

All cheques deposited by the account holders into their respective accounts were received over the counters. Confirmation of receipt of these cheques deposited are only by way of the 'bank's stamp' on the pay-in slip denoting the date and time it was received. These cheques are collected by the clearing clerks to be processed. The 'clearing' area would have a cabinet consists of pigeon holes, to segregate the cheques for each respective banks. Before the cheques are separated from the pay-in slips, it is summed up (both sides - cheques and pay-in slips) to ensure that the correct cheque amounts are entered into the pay-in slips which will ultimately be the credit amount to the respective account.

We, the clearing clerks, will separate the cheques from the pay-in slips. Then the cheques are inserted into the pigeon holes, according to the respective banks' cheques. When 'clearing' time ends at 11:30 am, we must now process the cheques; as these processed 'clearing cheques' must reach BNM in Kuala Lumpur for purpose of inter-bank 'clearing' by 2:00 pm. The cheques are totalled up in the 'clearing' slip, using the 'ADDO-X clearing machine', denoting the cheque numbers and the amount of each cheques. The slip is attached to the group of cheques of the same bank ready to be sent to Head Office. At Head Office Clearing Department, the cheques are compiled together (banks by banks) and sent for 'clearing' at BNM. At BNM, we exchange cheques among drawer banks, to take it back to the respective branches for debiting of the respective Current Account.

For those who have done 'clearing' of cheques, speed and accuracy is of the essence. Our cheques must reach Head Office by the designated time and the posting of the cheque numbers and amounts on the 'clearing' slips must be perfect. Any wrong figures (especially the cheque amount) will invite trouble and all figures (including inter-bank) will then not balanced for the day. When this happen, the managers and the officers will be screaming into our ears for days to come. Nevertheless, with practice, figures are seldom wrong (we use 4 fingers to cast) and the time line is seldom breached. Now this 'cheque clearing' service is outsourced to others to do!

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