How to get your compliant dealt with effectively

Unfortunately, here in the UK there can be times when having purchased a good or service, they is reason to express our dissatisfaction or disappointment. Over the years, we have developed a culture much like our American counterparts, which sees us routinely ‘complaining’ or even suing both individuals and companies alike, when we believe we have not received a level of service we accept. Whilst it is certainly true that millions of consumers have grounds for legitimate complains, each and every year, there is evidence to suggest that we should be mindful of complaining only when it is truly necessary and suitable to do so. Furthermore, the way we approach making a compliant can have a large impact as to the end result which is received. Ultimately, we should be supporting businesses, large and small and whilst contributing to our UK economy, understand there are routes for complaining when there are true grounds to do so. With all of this in mind let’s today look at a few different ways in which complaints can be made and when perhaps our grounds are not solid enough to do so in the first place.

First and foremost, let’s review simple facts and statistics surrounding customer complaints. An article published on the Provider Support Blog recently detailed that for every 1 customer who does complain, up to as many as 26 other customers will have felt the same way but remained silent. Equally when a consumer is unhappy with a product or service, they will on average, inform 15 different people of their experience and top this off, it can take up to 12 positive experiences prior to a negative one for a customer to forget to initial negative experience. So with just this handful of facts and figures in mind; keeping consumers happy is, as it has always been, key to the success of any given business. It would also be true to say that in instances where a complaint is made, it is important that businesses act quickly and professionally to resolve the issue in a timely manner.

Looking at this from a customer point of view then, what is the best way to go about making a compliant following a bad experience with a company? In reality the answer is dependent upon the good or service with whom you are dealing. In terms of financial services, such as short term and high cost borrowing providers who are available online, these companies for example, are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. This means that in instances where as customers we feel we have not been treated fairly, we have the right to complain to their regulating organisation. However, in such cases it is important to remember that procedure dictates that we must allow the supplying provider fair and reasonable opportunity to deal with your complaint, before the Financial Ombudsman will consider it directly.

Financial services are just one example and often complaints ‘experienced’ in everyday life are less ‘official’ in nature. This could mean a whole range of different things, whether it be poor service in a restaurant, a faulty good ordered online or a recent purchase which does not stand the ‘test of time’. The first step to take before making any complaint is assessing whether as a consumer, you truly have grounds for the complaint to be made. This means managing your own expectations in relation to the good purchased or service received. Establishing whether there is genuine fault on the behalf of the supplier is very important. Let’s look at two different examples to illustrate this point. Whilst queuing in a shop at lunchtime, you notice there is a spare till which is not open, all the staff are clearly busy but you are actually running late for returning to work. In this instance, although you may believe the spare till should be open, there is not a clear reason to complain; fundamentally the issue comes from the fact you are personally running late, not that the only remaining till is not open. A different example would be in an instance where having ordered in a restaurant you realise you have been waiting over an hour for your food and no one has checked in to give you an update on the now obvious delay. In this example, you may very well have grounds for a complaint; given the fact the service you have received does not match your realistic expectations.

The manner in which you ‘handle’ complaining can make a real and genuine difference, certainly in terms of speed of resolution. In simple terms this means being polite and clear as to why you are unhappy and detailing how you would like the manner resolved will help to keep the process stress free you for. Being angry, shouting and even swearing will not only make you as an individual feel stressed but in addition may inadvertently slow the entire resolution process down. Try to adopt the approach of treating others as you wish to be treated and be clear and accurate in your communication; doing so can often go a long way.   

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Author: Internal Marketing Department



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