We use Standard Singapore English, which is generally based on British English, with some distinctly American influence. When you're unsure about your writing, we hope these guidelines will help. As language is organic and change is inevitable, remember that these are just guidelines and not rules to follow without thinking.
Because of colonial influence, Standard Singapore English usually uses British spelling. However, there are increasing exceptions because of American influence over the internet.
We're working on a controlled vocabulary for words which we usually use in our products and communications. In the meantime, make sure that your writing tool is set to Singapore or British English so that it does not autocorrect spelling like these:
We address our customers by their first name to sound friendlier. We usually print their full names on official documents like bank statements.
In countries where we only ask for the customer's full name, we address them by their full name, prefixed with their selected honorific like Mr., Ms., or Dr. and so on. For example, we may start an email with:
Hi Dr. Anika Surendran,
When we're referring to the customer, we use 'you'. For example,
If you want to update your profile picture, go to Settings.
When we're referring to content or actions the customer own, we use 'your'. For example,
Check your account transactions using digibank Mobile
Do not refer to the customer as he or she, he/she, the customer, the client, the user, applicant, the reader or assign any roles to them if possible. It's clumsy and impersonal. For example,
'If he or she wants to update his or her profile picture, he or she needs to go to Settings.'
If there is a need to refer to the customer by their role in the context, use the singular pronoun 'they'. The inflected or derivative forms of they are, them, their, theirs, and themselves, or themself. The singular 'they' works similarly to the singular 'you'. For example,
If the winner is unable to collect the prize in person, he or shethey may request for delivery by courier.
This is similar in meaning to, 'If you're unable to collect the prize in person, you may request for delivery by courier.'
Note about writing for IBG
Writing for IBG is B2B communications. Hence, you're usually not addressing an individual but a customer who is acting on behalf of the company. Be mindful not to sound too personal. For example, don't say
'Would you like a business debit card?'
'Would anyone in your company require a business debit card?'
Avoid using 'my' or 'me' with 'you' or 'your' together as it can be confusing. For example,
Check My Account with your digibank app.
We, Our, Us
When referring to DBS Bank, or the DBS product the customer is using, use 'we', 'our', or 'us' to sound more personal. For example,
We will process your application within 3 working days.
Our interest rates are calculated based on your personal credit and income profile.
You can contact us for help.
DBS Bank will process your application within 3 working days.
DBS Personal Loan interest rates are calculated based on your personal credit and income profile.
You can contact DBS IDEAL team for help.
The legal and compliance team may sometimes refer to DBS Bank as 'the Bank'. For example,