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# 207870 17-Jan-2017 16:43
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Over the new years break I had a bad customer experience in a bricks and mortar retail store,which meant  I couldn't proceed with the purchase as a result. I don't want to go into details, but it wasn't good.  I was pretty annoyed about the way I was treated, so much so, that  I contacted their head office (it was a chain of stores)and made a written complaint. They apologized for the experience I had had, but they didn't investigate and give me an explanation to why I had been treated that way in store. They only said that they would be investigating it, and it was being treated seriously, but they did't say they would be contacting me to report their findings . I asked them to please provide me with an explanation and reasons for the bad service, but they wouldn't provide it to me, only to say that the feedback I gave them would be investigated as an internal matter.  So it appears that they apologised before they actually investigated it, and to date it doesn't appear they have investigated it. I am guessing being treated as an internal matter means they won't be reporting it back to me, the person who made the complaint.  Is this the normal way a complaint should be handled by a NZ retail business? I would have thought that they would first investigate it, and then apologize, along with an explanation and reasons, and what they are doing to prevent it happening again, would be the standard process for any complaint. Or am I expecting too much in 2017? Would welcome peoples opinions. It is annoying because I like to support NZ bricks and mortar stores where I can but this type of experience makes me prefer online shopping.


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  # 1704819 17-Jan-2017 17:05
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Yes that is normal. They cant tell you about anything that may happen to the staff in question at all because of the staffs privacy.





Richard rich.ms

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  # 1704824 17-Jan-2017 17:12
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I agree with @richms but would depend on what your expectations are from it, obviously more than just an apology.  I'm not in retail but any complaint we receive from a client is treated very seriously but we don't discuss what is happening and generally that is suffice.





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  # 1704826 17-Jan-2017 17:14
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Guessing won't help you. Two weeks or less seems like not long enough for a head office to look into a complaint.




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  # 1704844 17-Jan-2017 18:01
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BlinkyBill: Guessing won't help you. Two weeks or less seems like not long enough for a head office to look into a complaint.

 

I may expect it to take a few weeks. However they didn't say that they would need to investigate it and then get back to me, which is what I would expect. They just apologised, which is somewhat meaningless without context, and that the feedback I gave would be handled internally, so it doesn't appear it was treated as a complaint. So making a complaint was really a waste of time, as I don't get closure on it, and I don't know if the same problem may occur again. 




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  # 1704845 17-Jan-2017 18:03
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jeffnz:

 

I agree with @richms but would depend on what your expectations are from it, obviously more than just an apology.  I'm not in retail but any complaint we receive from a client is treated very seriously but we don't discuss what is happening and generally that is suffice.

 

 

 

 

My expectations were that if I visited one of their stores again, I wouldn't have the same problem. Part of the problem was due to lack of staff, so they didn't have the resources instore. But if they don't address my points then it comes down to being a waste of time making a complaint. I don't even know if they agree or disagree with the points I gave them. They have claimed I am giving them feedback, rather than it being a complaint, so that maybe part of the problem. Is it normal or good practice for retailers to have published complaints processes for customers?




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  # 1704846 17-Jan-2017 18:05
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richms:

 

Yes that is normal. They cant tell you about anything that may happen to the staff in question at all because of the staffs privacy.

 

 

 

 

Not sure if the Privacy act would apply, as it was more about the general customer service of the store, and I don't know their staffs names. Also I wouldn't need to know what action they may take against staff etc, as they could have just said that the issue instore had been dealt with accordingly, to make sure it won't happen again. But they would need to investigate it in order for that to occur..


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  # 1704856 17-Jan-2017 18:44
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More detail is needed from the OP they could of asked for 70% discount off an iPhone7 and upset cause the staff member refused such a discount or wanted the latest TV delivered installed / setup included for free

Linux

Edit: 3 sides to this story the OP above the sales person and the truth



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  # 1704861 17-Jan-2017 18:57
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Linux: More detail is needed from the OP they could of asked for 70% discount off an iPhone7 and upset cause the staff member refused such a discount or wanted the latest TV delivered installed / setup included for free

Linux

 

 

 

It wasn't anything like that. It would take a significant amount of time to write the full details, and they aren't really relevant to the topic. The head office also aren't disputing that my complaint wasn't valid, or my version of things weren't correct, so it doesn't really come into it. I can also get the product for the price I expected to instore etc, so that isn't a problem. It is just that they haven't investigated or reported back to me about the complaint, and it appears this is their policy. So I don't know if I am going to have the same problem again if I happened to visit one of their stores again.


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  # 1704863 17-Jan-2017 19:03
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mattwnz:

 

BlinkyBill: Guessing won't help you. Two weeks or less seems like not long enough for a head office to look into a complaint.

 

I may expect it to take a few weeks. However they didn't say that they would need to investigate it and then get back to me, which is what I would expect. They just apologised, which is somewhat meaningless without context, and that the feedback I gave would be handled internally, so it doesn't appear it was treated as a complaint. So making a complaint was really a waste of time, as I don't get closure on it, and I don't know if the same problem may occur again. 

 

 

 

 

A complaint is feedback and they apologized which they wouldn't do if it wasn't a complaint. I'm not sure what you mean without context, you told them you complaint and the apologized for your experience. I'm not sure what closure you are looking for? You have to take there word for it that they will investigate it as they told you they would and make any changes if they find it necessary.  




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  # 1704874 17-Jan-2017 19:18
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throbb:

 

 

 

A complaint is feedback and they apologized which they wouldn't do if it wasn't a complaint. I'm not sure what you mean without context, you told them you complaint and the apologized for your experience. I'm not sure what closure you are looking for? You have to take there word for it that they will investigate it as they told you they would and make any changes if they find it necessary.  

 

 

A complaint may contain some feedback in it, but a complaint itself should be treated as a complaint, not just as feedback. I believe with any complaints procedure, it is also normal practice  to  provide an explanation, assistance or reasons back to the complainant, after investigating it. The apology is also not based on the complaint, if it hasn't been investigated. After they have investigated it, they may not agree with me, then are they going to retract the apology?

 

I see the government Consumer protection site do have a list of what an effective complaints process should aim to provide at https://www.consumerprotection.govt.nz/for-business/handling-consumer-complaints-and-problems/developing-a-complaints-process-and-policy/ which is quite useful. In particular it says

 

An effective complaints process should aim to provide:

 

     

  • explanations and a sincere apology where appropriate

 

 

 

 

 


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  # 1704899 17-Jan-2017 20:47
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I'd always apologise to a customer up front no matter who was in the wrong even if just for the fact that they've had a bad experience (you can say it in a way that's not an admission of guilt if that's important).

 

Bit like when two people almost bump into each other in the street it's just nicer if both people apologize, I've found it works better than saying 'that's OK' to their apology. 


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  # 1704904 17-Jan-2017 20:55
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mattwnz:

 

.... the full details, and they aren't really relevant to the topic. ....

 

 

 

 

So what’s the reason for this post, is it just a bleat?

 

I  suspect the other posters in this thread are trying to make their minds up on whether (in their view) you’re in the right or not to have made a complaint, so context is relevant.

 

Depending on the nature of your complaint and their potential loss of revenue/value of the purchase the apology may have been a fob off to maybe lure you back into one of their shops sometime in the future.  Investigations take time and resource (= money) and they may have no real intention of doing one.





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  # 1704907 17-Jan-2017 20:59
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They are a private company.  They do not have any "law" they "have" to follow on this.  You got an apology, move on.  If it was a serious matter, for example you were discriminated against or assaulted then you need to take that complaint to the appropriate government agency.  





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  # 1704926 17-Jan-2017 22:07
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floydbloke:

 

mattwnz:

 

.... the full details, and they aren't really relevant to the topic. ....

 

 

 

 

So what’s the reason for this post, is it just a bleat?

 

I  suspect the other posters in this thread are trying to make their minds up on whether (in their view) you’re in the right or not to have made a complaint, so context is relevant.

 

Depending on the nature of your complaint and their potential loss of revenue/value of the purchase the apology may have been a fob off to maybe lure you back into one of their shops sometime in the future.  Investigations take time and resource (= money) and they may have no real intention of doing one.

 

 

 

 

It isn't relevant, because the store has already admitted they were wrong and that  I received poor service, and provided an apology. SO that isn't the purpose of my post. My issue is that they didn't provide an explanation and what they were going to do to prevent it reoccurring. As per my link to the governments website about how businesses manage complaints, it is best practice to do this.

 

You are right that it may cost them time to do this however I also spent a significant amount of time to write the complaint in the first place, which they are benefiting from, as now supposedly my information is now in their internal systems.


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  # 1704927 17-Jan-2017 22:09
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Some people just like to complain. About their complaint. The weather can bring it on sometimes.

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