AIT a joke?

Anyone have any experiences with AIT they would like to share?

  1. They have a policy where they don’t answer phones and only reply via email
  2. Before they would respond fairly quick via email, but now they have an automated email with links to their website in hopes you can find your answers there.

Sometimes I wonder if the folks back home are aware of how useless this “embassy” is sometimes.

Have you tried the other “real” US embassies? It’s a similar experience. I particularly enjoy the scrum that happens when the appointment time times up, especially in China.

You should be thankful that AIT actually does stuff and has people in it.

The UK version (BTCO) is little more than a service counter for the the British embassy in Hong Kong.

i’ve been satisfied with the notary services. however it is a pain to make an appointment . they only do notaries on tuesday and thursday mornings and charge 50usd per signature. if that day is a holiday you 're out of luck.

I actually got to speak with the head of AIT. He called me, personally.

I got poor responses to my questions via email. It was painfully obvious they were written by a non-native English speaker. I asked to speak to an actual native speaker. Evidently someone’s feelings got really hurt, so much so the head if AIT called me (don’t remember his name, he said he used to be stationed in Japan)he called me to chew me out for criticizing their English.

No one ever answered my question.

[quote=“puljaljuyan”]I actually got to speak with the head of AIT. He called me, personally.

I got poor responses to my questions via email. It was painfully obvious they were written by a non-native English speaker. I asked to speak to an actual native speaker. Evidently someone’s feelings got really hurt, so much so the head if AIT called me (don’t remember his name, he said he used to be stationed in Japan)he called me to chew me out for criticizing their English.

No one ever answered my question.[/quote]

:roflmao: The local staff at AIT are a real barrel of laughs.

I’d say so. Any time I ask a question, they always just send a link to something on their site, or from the site of another government website. For a good laugh, take a look at my recognized post about AIT .

I think from some aspects they could use an attitude adjustment. I can understand they get all sorts of strange questions and requests but since I rarely have chance to go there I just kinda hoped to get a smiling face to provide me with about 30 seconds to answer my stupid question. No one was in line so I thought I could just ask some basic questions…well, I guess I was wasting their time and should not ask such basic questions and do my own research.

me: I wish to enquire about the process regarding obtaining U.S. citizenship for my Taiwanese wife.
AIT counter: Fill out this packet A of documents and return to us. After that we will provide the next packet.

me: Thanks. How much time must my wife spend in U.S. for this process?
AIT: After you complete packet A we will provide the next packet of application documents.

me: Well, I saw online that the applicant must spend time in the U.S. during this process. Is there a standard amount of time must stay in U.S.?
AIT: We will provide the next packet when you finish packet A.

Well, I guess his SOP works…I quit bothering him and left with packet A. By the way, packet A did not answer my question.

renderings for the new ait complex. pretty big complex. this american architecture firm has done some nice work in the u.s.

http://www.moorerubleyudell.com/projects/american-institute-taipei

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Another shining example of well spent US tax dollars. A service organization that will not answer the phone but will hire an expensive arch firm to design an expensive new facility. Certainly would not want to hire more people so you can provide a notary service other than 8 - 11:30 Tues and Thur.

I have used AIT and pretty much got what I expected, having previously interacted with US gov’t service providers including contracting with some US agencies, the absolute minimum. Only do what you have to when you have to and nothing more. Did you really expect a smile and a helpful attitude?

There it is.
Dealing with government agencies, one must be well prepared for odious squareheads. Goes double when dealing with overseas offices, whose staff must attain certain levels of swinehood before securing their position.

[quote=“Micahel”]Another shining example of well spent US tax dollars. A service organization that will not answer the phone but will hire an expensive arch firm to design an expensive new facility. Certainly would not want to hire more people so you can provide a notary service other than 8 - 11:30 Tues and Thur.

I have used AIT and pretty much got what I expected, having previously interacted with US gov’t service providers including contracting with some US agencies, the absolute minimum. Only do what you have to when you have to and nothing more. Did you really expect a smile and a helpful attitude?[/quote]

how do you know that architecture firm is expensive? it’s not a very big well known firm. compared to the big firms like skidmore owings merrill, cesar pelli, santiago calatrava, zaha hadid, toyo ito, etc.

I’m not sure if you understand how government(s) works? It doesn’t have a customer service rating to contend with. They write, and follow, a rigid set of bylaws and protocols to follow. Their mission isn’t to make you happy; only to protect themselves from tangible malfeasance.

This is it: No creativity, no mission, no motivation.

Some questions:

Is it compatible/competitive with a free market enterprise? nope.

Do they care if you are happy and satisfied with their services? nope.

Do they care if your specific schedule/timetable is met? nope.

Do they satisfy the services the US government requires them to fulfill? yup

It’s a no win situation for anyone involved. The workers hate their jobs, and the customers hate their guts.

Personally, all government employees should wear the same t-shirt:

[quote=“Byrd”]I’m not sure if you understand how government(s) works? It doesn’t have a customer service rating to contend with. They write, and follow, a rigid set of bylaws and protocols to follow. Their mission isn’t to make you happy; only to protect themselves from tangible malfeasance.

This is it: No creativity, no mission, no motivation.

Some questions:

Is it compatible/competitive with a free market enterprise? nope.

Do they care if you are happy and satisfied with their services? nope.

Do they care if your specific schedule/timetable is met? nope.

Do they satisfy the services the US government requires them to fulfill? yup

It’s a no win situation for anyone involved. The workers hate their jobs, and the customers hate their guts. {clipped image to save bandwidth}[/quote]

Frankly, this is generally simplistic and inaccurate. There is a definite mission, and a focus on customer service along with ratings to contend with, but GS employees (and contractors) are so overwhelmed with massive inefficiency and lack of support, combined with excessive pointless extra work, that it is nigh on impossible to complete the mission much less do so while providing quality customer service.

I can’t even describe the ridiculousness of how things work working within the government/military. I spend a significant portion of my day documenting what I did during the day in excruciating detail, including documenting the specifics of how and when I documented my time documenting my time. Don’t even get me started on required trainings… Administrative requirements, every department defending their funding because no one has enough to actually do their job, etc. I have to hide paper so I can print patient reports, for goodness sake!

I can’t speak for AIT but I can tell you that where I work it’s not uncommon not to be told information the patient needs, or for that information to change so often that it’s impossible to actually give a real answer. Nobody I work with wants to be a pain for the customer, and most of us put in a lot of extra work and time trying to help them, but the system is set up to make it very difficult to fulfill the stated mission and provide excellent customer service.

I recall reading some Jeffersonian papers many years ago and this thread thread brought some quotes to mind. Jefferson, in so many words, stated that a revolution, every 75 years or so, is necessary to regain freedom from government.
I collected four of his quotes that seem to pertain to management of government that is truly not putting the people at the forefront of their employment. Government rules from the top down so I don’t think it fair to criticize AIT when you don’t agree with the policies that our government, in all three branches, has decreed.

“I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical. Unsuccessful rebellions indeed generally establish the encroachments on the rights of the people which have produced them. An observation of this truth should render honest republican governors so mild in their punishment of rebellions, as not to discourage them too much. It is a medicine necessary for the sound health of government.”

“I predict future happiness for Americans, if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.”

“When the people fear the government there is tyranny, when the government fears the people there is liberty.”

“I sincerely believe that banking establishments are more dangerous than standing armies, and that the principle of spending money to be paid by posterity, under the name of funding, is but swindling futurity on a large scale.”

So taipei is kicking AIT out of its present location. I hope it’s at least accessible from the MRT.

[quote=“forealz”]
how do you know that architecture firm is expensive? it’s not a very big well known firm. compared to the big firms like skidmore owings merrill, cesar pelli, santiago calatrava, zaha hadid, toyo ito, etc.[/quote]

I really do not know.

Question the need for a new building at all, and the facility looks expensive. Believe the money would be better spent hiring more staff and improving service.

Present location of AIT is on either TW govt land or TW govt bank hands, I forget which. Its extremely valuable, that property.

And it was too small for AIT’s needs. But since the govt moves slowly, a need 30 years ago finally gets a plan in motion and 30 years later its replacement has yet to be built. But since that time, things have changed and now the perceived need is likely not there anymore, but being the govt, plans are in place, contractors contracted, etc. So it will be built. Largely useless now.

The new large AIT is no accident. It is all part of the grand plan…of what china(s) is doing…toward the future…snore. :sleepy:

The US government is bad at doing things because the US government is,by definition, run by elected politicians. A damned if you do, damned if you don’t emulsion that equilibrates somewhere just south of mediocre.

The people who take the jobs to work for said gov’t often do so with high hopes, arriving on day 1 with motivation.

Said people, 10 months later, begin counting the days to retirement. or death. either will do.

If you think the AIT building is bad, try ‘the entire State of California’. Now that place is fucked.

anyone know anyone that actually works there?

Last time I had to get an document notarized,I almost knocked one of them out. The lady at the counter brought my document to her superior to sign off, but she wouldn’t sign off. The reason why she wouldn’t sign it was completely asinine.

But, the problem I had was, the manager was speaking in perfect English to the lady at the counter, both right in front of me through the glass window.The lady at the counter then repeated the same sh*t to me in broken English. This went on for about 10 mins and I had enough and asked the manager why I couldn’t speak to her directly in English. I’m standing right in front of you, we both speak fluent English, this way there’s no miscommunication.
She looked at me dumbfounded and said to the lady at the counter that she couldn’t speak to customers directly. That’s AIT for you.