Wording of the status message 4/8/2018

(Alex Sherwood) #23

We’re off topic, could one of the CC please split the status update from Hugh & queries about the issue to another thread?

(Hugh Wells) #24

I merged two threads before the title was changed.

To confirm - we’re seeing inbound payments start to come through again.

(Alex Sherwood) #25

This topic has always been about the wording of the message, not the issue itself. I’d appreciate it if you could please split this again.

(Hugh Wells) #27

Just a quick update:

A third party provider which provides our connection to the Faster Payments network ran into some issues during planned maintenance. We’re working with them to understand what happened and what we can do to prevent similar issues in the future.

(Hugh Wells) #31

Yes, we’ve been informed by their engineers that they’ve discovered further issues.

I’m going to split this thread into two discussions as @alexs suggest on current status and the wording of our communications, respectively

(Jack) #32

I was under the impression Monzo were a directly connected participant of FPS?


(Punit Mannari) #33

Been with Monzo for about a week. I was thinking of going full Monzo from next week, get my wages paid here…but I might wait another month and try it out


See that’s why Monzo should have kept card top-ups :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


There’s a lot that happens in the middle, I imagine. I don’t want to speculate too much, but the third party could be a data centre, a leased line or something similar - it might not mean that the whole connection to the scheme is outsourced, for example.

(But equally it might. I have no idea - but a range of options are possible).


On the original point, I understand where Alex is coming from - and I have sympathy - but I’m not sure that the original message is all that problematic, to be honest. I think the outcome would be the same whether or not users knew this was a supplier (it seems to me to be a different case to, for example, MasterCard outages that affect multiple banks).

Having been involved in this type of thing over the years there are always trade offs to be made. You absolutely want to alert users as soon as possible. But equally you want to establish some base facts first. You want to be transparent, but you also don’t want to inadvertently mislead by giving out information too early that might not turn out to be correct after you’ve investigated. It’s actually really hard to get the balance right.

In this case, it seems that the message has gone out quickly (it seemed slightly rushed?) and that the only omission is that it’s a third party who had planned maintenance. But to many users this won’t matter - they’ll just see Monzo. And others might have see it as passing the buck or too much info.

My own view (and hindsight is 20:20) is that it might have been better to let users know that a supplier is planning maintenance before the event itself if there was the slightest possibility service might be affected (although I’d assume in this case Monzo’s assessment would have been no impact likely?). Once the incident hit, I think the choice is between owning the supply chain (therefore not mentioning the planned downtime - users will just ask why they didn’t know about it) or to include that it was a “third party” or similar in the message.

I kinda think it’s a bit academic. I think that the tweets that Alex posted would have happened either way. Personally, I like the transparency but think that the messaging could be slightly tighter, so I’d opt for more specific wording indicating that it was a supplier failure.

in any event, big thanks to the incomparable @HughWells for keeping us updated.


(Alex Sherwood) #37

If Monzo weren’t clear exactly where the cause of the issue lay when they posted that update then then in my humble opinion, I think the message was entirely appropriate. I raised my concern based on the assumption that because they knew that planned maintenance was the cause of the issue, they knew who was at fault. But the tweet that awjdean shared suggests that, that may have not been the case. In which case, I’m happy.

I’m not under the illusion that the status message that I suggested would have stopped all complaints, I’m sure plenty of people still wouldn’t have read it / cared / appreciated the significance of what was said etc. But if they could have avoided the ambiguity about where the source of the issue was, then even if that only stopped one customer ‘rage quitting’ Monzo, it would have been worthwhile in my opinion. And as I mentioned in my original post, Monzo has acknowledged the fact that there have been issues related to unclear communication before.


It is clearly too early to issue detailed statement on what happened. Getting 3rd parties into the discussion while their responsibility is not fully confirmed will only cause unnecessary business frictions between them and Monzo. Patience. :sunglasses:

(Richard Cook) #39

Hey all,

Thanks @alexs for the feedback on today’s status update. You’re right, this is something we’ve been trying to improve recently, and I’ll pass the feedback on.

We’ll post an update on here when there’s more information about this incident to share.


So Monzo aren’t direct participants of the faster payment so it’s a third party issue. Thanks @simonb and @alexs for updates.

(Jack) #41

I totally agree, my post was more of a clarification as to if they connect via a third party intergration or if the issue may have been related to one of the above that you mention. Some people have said in the past they are not directly connected and use say another bank or service.


Did I miss something there?

When was that said?

(Punit Mannari) #43

Make banking great again…:grinning:

(Alex Sherwood) #45

That’s more like it :slight_smile:


So there’s a 3rd party between Monzo and Apple and Google.
Is this common? If any Monzo person could give info that would be cool


A post was split to a new topic: Big Banks reported payment outages issues