Why I love customer complaints (really!)

20 April 2023


Stephen Brown
Stephen Brown
Woman wearing a grey sweater holding one thumb up and one thumb down in front of her

The word complaint is thought provoking, anxiety inducing, and, for those of us that have received them directly, borderline terrifying.

The fear of your business or company receiving multiple complaints is enough to keep anyone up at night worrying about what went wrong. What did we do? What did we not do? Why are people so unhappy? How can we make things better?

For the individual complaining, it’s much more personal. Their worries involve being listened to and taken seriously, as well as receiving a fair outcome, all while hoping to avoid being stereotyped as yet another ‘Karen’ or ‘Ken’.

Complaints are necessary

However, what if I was to tell you that complaints can actually be beneficial? Or, to go a step further, not just beneficial but outright necessary? You may think that I’ve lost my senses here, but give me a chance to explain!

At Atom, we see things differently from other financial institutions. Our aim since day one has been to change banking for the better by putting customers at the heart of what we do. We want them to engage with us and tell us things are going right (we appreciate a pat on the back!) but, more importantly, when things aren’t going so well.

Others may see complaints as a detriment, something that needs to be resolved to remove an ugly figure from their books. You may receive a token gesture of apology, and then the issue vanishes to the annals of history, never to be spoken of again and confined to the status of a statistic.

This is not the Atom way and this will not become the Atom way — we’re immensely proud of that fact.

The Atom attitude to complaints

When someone complains, it shows that they care. They’ve invested their own time into letting you know their concerns and giving you the chance to resolve them. Some of these complaints come through more ‘passionately’ than others. However, at Atom we see all feedback as a gift. We love to receive it, be it good, bad or ugly. We’ll take what we can get.

With a positive mindset towards complaints, and an engaged team who really take on board our customer’s feedback, we can really listen to what our customers are saying and drive positive changes.

Our customers advised that they’d like to be able to use their device security to log into the Atom app. So, we made that change! They told us that it would be helpful to receive an annual statement of interest. We’ve got you covered! When we receive any actionable feedback, we always make an effort to see what we can do to make our customers’ journey with Atom easier and more pleasant.

We know we aren’t perfect. We may have come an awful long way in a short space of time, but we all make mistakes. As much as I would love to say otherwise, there will be mistakes in the future, too. It does neither Atom or our customers any good for us to pretend otherwise and rest on our laurels.

So, next time something isn’t quite what you had hoped for, or if you have any suggestions for us to improve, please don’t give us the silent treatment. Feedback is a gift, and we’re listening.