How does complaint management affect customer-company relations?

Complaint is a customer’s way to express that his/hers expectations or needs aren’t met with a product or a service. Reclamation should be used by a company to fix or compensate an occurred mistake and improve their services.

In every corporation employees have their own opinions of the matter and there are varieties of characters. It’s not easy to guarantee a stable and fast customer service.
CRM-programs help to implement and speed up complaint procedures. I think that there should be at least a clear guidance in every company how to deal with claims.

Clients will often be disappointed if they are left alone with their problems. A few times as a client I have myself been very upset and frustrated with reclamation procedures.
In those cases a company can say goodbye to me and not expect any more of my money. You can say that the company’s profits and customer satisfaction go hand in hand.
To answer why you should put effort in complaint management, the answer is customer retention. In ideal cases from the start to the ending point a well managed claim strengthens the customership. The customer feels that she/he is served and taken seriously also in a difficult situation. This adds the reliability towards the company.

In social media a company’s reputation spreads much faster than previously. So customer experiences are playing a major role in business. Corporations should quickly respond to query, explain what has happened or went wrong and take responsibility of their actions.

Here are some tips:

  • Don’t interrupt a customer, let him/her communicate the worries.
  • Say sorry immediately, because the customer feels upset (even if it’s not the company’s fault).
  • Don’t start a debate with the customer, be calm and friendly.
  • Be responsible and constructive, without promising too much.
  • Tell the customer that you will contact her/him (and give the exact time when!), if you don’t find the solution immediately.
  • Ask help from your colleague if you can’t handle the claim yourself.
  • Don’t let the customer feel that he/she is wrong, give more information.
  • Take care of the claim as soon as possible.

Remember to thank for the reclamation, especially if the claim has been constructive.
If you take good care of all the purchasing process steps you will find out that the positive image spreads, and you can keep the customers satisfied.




Barlow, Janelle & Møller, Claus 1998. Ota asiakasvalitus lahjana. Tietosanoma, Helsinki.

Matikainen, Timo 2012. Logica, Ratkaisu asiakas- ja sidosryhmälehti 3/2012.

Stauss, Bernd & Seidel, Wolfgang 2004. Complaint management : the heart of CRM. 1st ed. South-Western.

Valvio, Timo 2010. Palvelutapahtuma ja asiakkaan kohtaaminen. Kauppakamari, Helsinki.

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3 Responses to How does complaint management affect customer-company relations?

  1. saripajala says:

    Good points! Also I would like to add here, that occasionally something new, business or otherwise a different way of work prosedure should or could be created due the customer complaints.

  2. satuspenttinen says:

    I agree. Customer satisfaction is a key success factor for many of the companies. One way to get them is by taking care of reclamations fast and efficient. Well-handled reclomation can produce very loyal customers.

  3. tuulianeuvonen says:

    I also wrote a blog on customer complaints and find this interesting. Social media is a good point to bring up. It’s way faster to get your message out and also to people you don’t personally know. If I am considering to buy something that needs a little research I might go to a discussion board and see what other people say about it. Usually the one that has more positive reviews wins.

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