Complaint Management

What is Complaint Management?

Complaint management software provides a critical function within a quality management system (QMS): it enables manufacturers to handle complaints in a timely manner, involving suppliers when appropriate. Complaint management software also provides feedback of product-in-use data to the manufacturer’s and/or supplier’s design, planning and process engineering teams to enable continuous improvement.

The use of a QMS concern and complaint management (CCM) software module enables the manufacturer’s complaint acquisition, analysis and evaluation processes. Resulting evaluations and vulnerability analyses are of great significance to the further development of products and processes.

Concern and complaint management software also allows manufacturers to optimize and align supply chain procedures with their integrated processes. CCM software encompasses cross-company/supplier communication as well as internal problem-solving processes, enabling continuous improvement.

Woman using complaint management software to record and track customer issues.

Concern and Complaint Management Software Functionality

Complaint management includes the capabilities for acquiring all relevant external and internal complaint data. A wide range of analysis functions enables the rapid and efficient identification of weaknesses and the prompt initiation of counter measures. Integrated, comprehensive evaluation and analysis tools support continuous, sustainable quality and productivity improvements.

A concern and complaint management solution features real-time, efficient communication. Complaint workflows in complaint management software allow manufacturers to activate immediate actions that send information (required for stock level investigations/stocktaking and defect analysis) to designated company departments.

Complaint analysis in CCM software can be handled in accordance with quality procedures such as 8D [link to glossary page], including initiation of various actions, cause analyses and efficiency confirmations. Defect cause analysis is complemented by quality management functionality that supports the Ishikawa method (cause/effect) and the 5Whys problem-solving methodology.

If the manufacturer determines that a supplier is the cause of complaints, the manufacturer can automatically generate a supplier complaint using CCM software.

Complaint management software supports efficient communication among stakeholders, with portals and interfaces to include:

  • A supplier portal for online supplier exchange
  • A simplified acquisition portal for setup of new customer/dealer processes
  • Integration in original equipment manufacturer (OEM) portals with exchange of the inspection and 8D reports

A CCM web portal enables the acquisition of external complaints, such as those from end customers; the handling of internal/external response measures; and document exchange supporting defect descriptions.

Complaint Management Benefits

Concern and complaint management software benefits manufacturers by providing a structured complaint handling procedure with detailed documentation, as well as track and trace capabilities, allowing them to achieve significant time and cost savings.

Additional benefits:

  • Automate and simplify complaint process
  • Execute actions in a timely manner
  • Develop higher level of customer satisfaction
  • Increase quality process transparency
  • Rapidly identify weaknesses and implement corrective measures
  • Eliminate redundant tasks
  • Paperless quality processes
  • Reduce quality costs