Complaint outcomes and record keeping

Inform the complainant of the outcome of the complaint


Once the complaint has been considered or resolved, you need to tell the complainant about:

  • The action that was taken by your business
  • The outcome(s) of the complaint
  • The reasons for the action taken and the decisions made
  • What you are offering them (eg, compensation, apology)
  • Information about what else they can do if they are not happy with this outcome and/or resolution(Standards Australia, 2014).

Once you have done everything possible from your perspective to resolve the complaint, let the complainant know the outcome. If this outcome is not satisfactory for the complainant, explain your decision and offer the complainant other possible actions or referrals (Standards Australia, 2014).

A template for a complaints handling letter can be found here


Provide notice of the outcome, your reasons,and options for the complainant to take other possible action, in writing.

Take the opportunity to publicise your improvements as a result of complaints, so that other potential customers can see them.

Record Keeping and Reviewing Data

Information collection

Your business’ information collection about complaints should include:
A process for identifying, gathering, maintaining, storing and disposing of records
Recording each complaint and keeping these records
Maintaining a record of the staff training that those who receive complaints have had
Criteria for responding to requests for records and relating to publication of any records kept.(Standards Australia, 2014)

Reviewing your data

Regularly review any complaint data to see if there are any service improvements you can make to decrease complaints and improve satisfaction (Sourdin, 2016).
One way to do this might be to do brief regular reviews and an annual review. (Standards Australia, 2014).


Your business should keep accurate and up to date records of all complaints, the action you have taken, the decisions made and the outcome (Standards Australia, 2014)

A good test to see whether the details of the complaint have been well recorded is to ask yourself: if I sent this record to another person who manages complaints in my business who knows nothing about this, would they be able to take over management of the complaint? (Cook, 2012).


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