Complaints Analytics: generating insights into organisational culture


The importance of proper complaints-handling as a measure of a healthy organisational culture has recently been brought into sharp focus in various public inquiries and media commentary.

Whether in the public sector, banking industry, dispute resolution or other regulatory oversight body, complaints data provide valuable untapped insights that can be used to help you better understand and serve the public and your customers/members.

We recently worked with some progressive clients to link and analyse 10 years’ worth of their complaints data. One of the major benefits was the identification of real opportunities for a joined-up approach to address systemic issues, and to improve overall complaints-handling maturity in the sector.


Getting started

It’s often useful initially to explore exactly what is possible with your available complaints data.

This is why we regularly begin our complaints analytics work with a short data discovery exercise to help both the client and us frame some of the questions to be answered and possible outcomes.



  • What new stories can we extract from the data to help us improve our service delivery?
  • How do we translate raw data and analytics into meaningful, actionable insights that help us target our limited resources for better stakeholder outcomes?


Efficiency & effectiveness

  • How can we use our data to process more complaints faster, without losing focus on the quality of our triage, assessment and follow-up processes?
  • How can the data help us focus on matters that deliver the greatest impact (and are we even using the right outcome indicators to measure impact)?


Proactive posture

  • What other opportunities could be exploited to re-orient our efforts (for example, to be more proactive and less reactive in dealing with complaints)?
  • Can we work with similar entities to enable joined-up analysis for more strategic and whole-of-sector complaints outcomes?

The increasing availability of open source data also enriches the value of your complaints data, which in turn will translate into better outcomes for the public and your customers/members.


The cultural value-add

We know that sometimes it’s easy to get lost in the details of individual complaints, rather than taking an overall view, but it needn’t be complex.

Simply start with the question:

“What are our strategic objectives and which data do we capture (regardless of format and area of our business) that could support us to achieve those objectives?”

In our experience, there is real long-term organisational value in taking a rigorous approach to analysing complaints data and acting on the results to help shape your culture.