Friday, November 12, 2010

Incorrect Time Printed on Metrobank Deposit Slips

Dragonpay users who choose to use Metrobank over-the-counter payments usually encounter a problem when validating their payments. The problem stems from the fact that the time that Metrobank prints on their deposit slip is oftentimes wrong. In most instances, they seem to print a time in the future (as far as 30 mins ahead in the future). Less often, its in the past (eg. 10 mins behind). And in a few instances, it actually prints the correct time.

Dragonpay's system is fully automated and its time is synchronized with the Atomic Clock time server used by the U.S. military, scientific and academic institutions. We suspect that Metrobank's back-end system is also synchronized with some external clock. In fact, there is no problem between our time and the time reported by Metrobank's back-end as our transactions data are consistent.

The only real problem is the time being printed on the deposit slip which is the basis of our users when validating their payment transaction. Because the time printed is often incorrect, our system replies by saying that it cannot find the deposit made at that time. This, in turn, worries our customers because they are sure they made the payment.

To avoid this problem, we encourage our customers to check the time at the branch's wall clock, or to check their own wrist watch when making the transaction. If the time printed on the deposit slip significantly varies from the time of your watch or the branch's clock (ex. more than 5 minutes apart), take note of the time on your watch/clock and use that instead when validating online with Dragonpay. You might also want to bring this to the attention of the branch officer.

Take note that this time problem does not happen at all Metrobank branches. There are some branches which seem to return the correct time. We suspect that the time being printed is based on the clock of the local PC of the teller instead of the back-end. So if the local PC time is incorrect, the time printed is also incorrect. Metrobank does not seem to do any time synchronization among its branch PC's.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

On-Us Check Deposits Now Accepted

In our effort to accept more payment options for our merchants, we now support on-us check deposits aside from cash. The implementation is initially available to BDO, BPI, EastWest Bank, Metrobank and Unionbank over-the-counter payments.

On-us check deposit refer to checks that are issued by a local bank and are deposited in that same bank. For example, a Metrobank check that is deposited into Dragonpay's Metrobank bank account is considered an on-us check deposit. A Unionbank check that is deposited into Dragonpay's Unionbank account would likewise be considered as an on-us check deposit. But a Metrobank check deposited to Dragonpay's Unionbank account would not be considered as one.

The difference between a regular check deposit and an on-us check deposit is the latter is usually treated in the same way as a cash deposit. On-us checks are often not subject to the typical 3-day clearing of a regular local check from another bank.

It is curious to note that although Metrobank charges a handling fee for provincial cash deposits, they do not charge anything for provincial check deposits. So if you want to make a payment to a Dragonpay/PayEasy merchant and you are outside of Metro Manila, you are better off depositing a Metrobank/On-Us check to our bank account instead of using cash to avoid this bank fee. An alternative for Metrobank account holders is to ask the branch to perform a CREDIT MEMO or Direct Account Fund Transfer to avoid the cash handling fee.