Essential features of a complaint handling system
The following Five-Point Framework can be used to develop a system for responding to complaints from your customers:
There should be a commitment at all levels of your business to a complaint resolution system that is efficient, fair and includes:
- acknowledging that your customers have a right to complain;
- openly seeking feedback from your customers; and
- having a written policy about handling complaints which is readily available to your customers.
Complaint handling should be fair to all parties, and must allow everyone's views to be heard and taken into account in a balanced way.
Adequate resources should be made available to handle complaints efficiently and effectively. Complaints received should be dealt with quickly and courteously.
Those involved in responding to complaints should have the authority and ability to decide remedies and to put them into effect.
Your complaint handling system should be accessible to all customers, and help them lodge their complaints. Information about how to make a complaint should be readily available and simple to understand. Consider making it available in several different languages.
It should not cost your customer anything to make a complaint.
You should record the complaints received and the outcomes achieved.
Recurring and systemic problems which become known through your complaint handling system should be identified and rectified.
Review the operation of your complaint handling system regularly to make sure that effective outcomes are achieved for customers and retailers.
Make sure there is appropriate reporting of the findings of reviews into the operations of the complaint handling systems.