Almost all businesses that have customers at some point receive complaints from these customers. Often these complaints are perceived as an inconvenience. To some they can even be a major concern. You should note that complaints are not necessarily a bad thing. They are an opportunity to improve. Many quality systems such as ISO identify complaint handling as necessary.
Collection and processing can be one of the biggest challenges associated with customer complaint handling. This is because complaints often arrive into the business in many different ways – letters, emails, sales reps, phone calls etc. This results in the fact that often complaints get ignored, mishandled or lost. The ultimate solution is to have procedures developed so that all complaints can be processed and recorded.
Central customer complaint handling systems such as complaint handling software is often used. This type of system means that staff throughout the organization, and out in the field, a way to record and store each complaint they receive in real time. The software can include methods to attach documentation and also to assign tasks to others for investigation and resolution. It can also be used to record corrective actions, root causes and outcomes. The result of using specialized complaint handling software is that the history of each individual complaint is recorded from the initial contact through to final resolution. Production or service improvements can be determined from this type of information.