Complaints: How to try to retain complaint customers and even turn them into advocates of your business

Understanding complaints is important for any business understanding what it is doing wrong and how to fix it.
Ricky Smith
Head of Complaints Sector
Wednesday, September 1, 2021

Complaints is one of the most important parts of any business, it is how customers let us know as a business what we are doing wrong and more importantly how we can fix weaknesses. Often complaints are seen as a cost centre; however, if you have the right processes and people in place you can turn complaint customers into some of the greatest advocates of your business.

So how do you go about taking complaints customers and turning them into advocates or if not advocates, retain them as customers.

Resolution time is a key factor, the ability to resolve complaints quickly is one of the most efficient ways of driving complaints satisfaction. Whilst this is not always possible depending on the type of complaint and business sector you work in but having streamlined processes and systems designed to support fast resolutions will improve your timescales and customer satisfaction.

Having the right system to record, track and most importantly identify trends and root cause is an undeniably important tool. This will allow you to identify trends quickly and complete root cause analysis to identify any pitfalls or bumps in your customer journeys be it at first point of contact, end of journey or simply an IT issue that causes detriment. Another benefit is an effective complaints management tool which will give a central point that will allow any member of staff the ability to provide an update or answer questions for customers, without the need for the customer to explain everything again, this will increase customer satisfaction that their complaint is being dealt with efficiently.

Lastly adaptability and having the courage to change your processes to drive better, fairer outcomes for your customers or to respond to learnings from ombudsman outcomes (utilities and finance). Being set into following the same process because “we’ve always done it like that” or because you are concerned about cost, will drive poorer outcomes and higher costs. With less referrals and fairer outcomes those costs can ultimately be lower, something I’ve found from experience.

Not all complainants can be turned into advocates of your business or even be retained, but these steps will provide a more engaged customer experience which will achieve a faster, more efficient and fairer outcome.  

Here at Tieta we have the skills and experience to deliver all the above through our dedicated teams of trained customer complaints agents, if you want to improve your customer engagement contact us for a no obligation discussion.

Ricky Smith

Complaints Manager

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