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Making Financial Complaints Reporting Less Painful

by Lynne Campbell | Posted in Complaints management systems for Financial Services | 27 November 2014

UK Financial Services firms have to provide the Financial Conduct Authority with data on the complaints they have received every 6 months, which the FCA then publish for all to see. How can a good complaints management process help financial firms with this somewhat painful requirement?

Fluctuating Complaint Numbers
Complaint numbers are constantly fluctuating. 2.36 million complaints were made to financial firms in the first six months of 2014, 5% fewer than the second half of 2013.  But you never know when an incident may happen that could cause complaints to blow up again. An unexpected faulty product or mis-sold service maybe. An example of this is the recent Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) scandal. The FSA (Financial Services Authority, now split in to the FCA and the Prudential Regulation Authority) began imposing fines for PPI mis-selling in 2006*, and only at the beginning of 2014 was there an 11% drop in complaints about the incident.

A good complaints management process will help ensure that no matter how many complaints are coming through the business, professional practice and process will be followed, and every complaint will be well handled. You may get complaints, but you can avoid complaints about how you handle them (and fines for poor complaint handling from the Regulator too).

Prevent Future Complaints
Of course you want to limit the number of complaints coming through in the first place. Collecting and analysing complaints data can help you to identify products that need improvement, or specific areas of the business that need to change. For example between Jul-Dec 2013 and Jan-Jun 2014, there has been a 25% increase in complaints regarding Personal Pensions and Free Standing AVCs (Additional Voluntary Contributions), obviously an area that needs some attention. As mentioned by the FCA, monitoring complaints data helps to highlight any emerging issues or risks.

Easy FCA Reporting
Finally, you can make the process of reporting complaints data to the FCA as simple and efficient as possible. A complaints management system like Workpro records every complaint, and then tracks and manages the process of resolving them. Finally it reports on outcomes and causes. Regulatory reporting is a standard feature so you can produce FCA regulatory reports quickly and cost-effectively.

Workpro makes for happier customers (better customer service) and happier staff (improved productivity and better management insight). It also makes compliance with regulation and legislation a lot less painful.

*http://www.theguardian.com/business/2011/may/05/how-ppi-scandal-unfolded

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