08 Apr Sheer panic turns to delight on April Fools’ day
CompSol’s staff were shocked when they opened a mail from management on Tuesday, 1 April.
The mail – headed “Employees Tax Error”— explained that there had been a “system glitch”, causing the payroll system to “incorrectly import 2004’s tax tables instead of 2014’s”. Furthermore, the shortfall to SARS had to be refunded immediately. To add insult to injury, employees had been penalised with severe SARS fines, which would be fully recovered in the April 2014 payroll run.
“We did not foresee the reaction from staff,” says Fritz Lüttich, CompSol’s MD. “Some immediately took some Rescue Remedy tablets, others threw their hands in the air out of panic. One lady stood up and went home, too upset to work further. A few phoned SARS to plead for mercy. Needless to say, the poor SARS official was totally confused!”
Fritz and his team quickly followed up with a message from Mr April Fool, stating that SARS had accepted CompSol’s “application to waiver all penalties and fines”. The SARS letter also stated that, as punishment for trying to create patients for the company’s EMS division, the staff should be awarded awarded with a R1000 Checkers voucher and a R1000 cash bonus!
“While there was some fun with the April Fool’s prank, the vouches and bonuses were a sincere gesture to thank staff for long hours spent at their desks and on the road, for the smiles when the going was tough, and the teamwork, commitment and belief in our company,” says Fritz. The sheer panic of the April Fool’s prank was soon forgotten, evidenced by responses from some of the staff:
“Thank you very much for the vouchers and bonus! Ek waardeer dit baie” — Adri Schilder, Accountant
“Baie dankie vir die groot geskenk, ek waardeer dit opreg. Dit is ’n voorreg om sulke base te werk.” — Anna-Mare Oliphant, Finance
“Baie dankie vir die vouchers en bonus! Ek is trots om vir hierdie maatskappy te werk en deel te kan wees van hierdie wonderlike familie.” — Jané Zimmer, Executive Personal Assistant
“From the bottom of my heart, I would just like to say: Thank you for this surprise. It means the world that this came at a time when it was needed. You and your families are truly an inspiration to all of us.” — Dionette van Wyk, Account Administrator
“Baie dankie weereens vir die wonderlike verrassing. Dit word opreg waardeer!!” — Madeleine Ackerman, Assistant Operations Manager
“Baie baie dankie vir hierdie groot geskenk. Julle het geen idee wat dit vir my en my gesin beteken nie. Mag die Here julle ryklik seen.” — Anne-Marié Niemand, Contract Administrator
“Al wat ek kan sê is ‘Dankie’. Woorde kan skaars beskryf hoeveel die bonus vir my beteken. Tog hoop ek dat hierdie woord genoeg is om my innige dankbaarheid oor te dra.”— Leona Jonck, Sales Manager
“Baie, baie dankie vir die grote geskenk. Ek waardeer dit baie.” —Rozanne Els, Contract Administrator
“Let me just say WOW!!! Totally unexpected, really welcomed and I don’t really have words.Thank you so much guys, it is really appreciated.” — Paul van Heerden, Business Development Manager
“Ek wil net baie, baie dankie se vir my geskenkbewys en ook die kontant. Ek waardeer dit opreg. Ek voel elke dag so dankbaar om vir julle te werk.” — Marleine Fouche, Payroll Administrator
“Baie, baie dankie vir die wonderlike ‘April fool’ geskenk. Ons Heer is Groot en Almagtig. — Lucinda Thom, Account Administrator