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Are Customers' Complaints Addressed Effectively?


Guest articles > Are Customers' Complaints Addressed Effectively?


by: Viganesh Kumar


Are all your complaints being addressed effectively? To whom do you complaint? Is the officer in-charge is an experienced person in managing complaints? The common customers’ complaints include facility faultiness or defects, lack of product knowledge and poor customer service skills. According to Michael Hill through, he claimed that ‘A study carried out by the Warwick Business School revealed that 53% of examples of outstanding service resulted from complaints handled well by a business’. However do all the customer complaints are taken positively by the management?

Poor handling of customers may only foresee customers to voice out their dissatisfaction up to maximum level. The new age of customers especially the frustrating ones goes to extent of inserting their comments being heard in social network. Customers can be hysterical, loud, abusive or screaming when they demand for changes. Managing complaints can be a stressful task if the employees are not given the right guidance and authority. Sending newcomers or novices to resolve customer complaints shall result backlash as their inexperience’s may invoke further anger among customers. In one of my visit to a cafeteria, a customer seated beside my table ordered Ice Kacang. She tried the Ice Kacang and felt that the corn had bitter taste. She called the waiter and explained that the corn might be tainted and the waiter just nods her head in acceptance of the explanation. As a waiter or management team what would you do? The common practice is to apologize, change the whole set, recommend other products and give complimentary items. However the waiter came back with the same Ice Kacang by only removing the corn from the bowl. The customer let her frustration burst and the whole cafeteria had the spotlight on her table. The supervisor rushed and had to calm the situation down but the customer went off angrily.

Based on the situation, the waiter did not have the right guidance on what to do if the product is found tainted. The waiter is also new to the place and does not have the adequate knowledge to address customer complaints. By the time the issue exploded, the customer had enough of the justification and subsequently vents her disappointments at other channels. The management should be held responsible for their employees’ incompetence in resolving customer complaints tactfully. Organizations should never take things lightly on customers complaints and always be prepared when such situation arises. All employees should be well prepared when encountering customer complaints especially the person in charge should possess the right experience, capability and expertise in engaging complaints. Poor on-job training also contributes to the lack of poor management of customer complaints. It is the responsibility of the management to ensure their employees are well-briefed and trained in handling customer complaint. Management should also meet customers in private to ensure the complaints are resolved.

In Malaysia, if customers are unhappy with the provided services they can also voice their complaints to National Consumer Complaints Centre through The agency provides customers to register their dissatisfaction through E-Complaint, email and tele-conversation. According to Lee Resource Incorporation ‘91% of unhappy customers will not willingly do business with your organization again’. Judging from phrase, we should ask ourselves “Are we committed in tackling customers’ complaints for continuous sustainability of our business or simple ignorance that leads losing customers and revenue on long run?”


Viganesh Kumar, a HRDF approved consultant, trainer and lecturer in the fields of Management, Operation and Hospitality. A Human Resource Strategist with distinctive career and has provided consultancy & training for over than 200 organizations in various industry.

View his complete profile.

Contributor: Viganesh Kumar

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Classification: Development



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