The Complaints Management Team monitors the implementation of a.s.r.’s complaints policy and manages the complaints scheme. Complaints handling itself is decentralised within the organisation. Core principles and objectives of complaints management are:
a.s.r. is open to complaints, making it easy for customers to submit a complaint;
a.s.r. communicates its views and the resolution of the complaint in a comprehensible manner;
a.s.r. wants to learn from complaints.
a.s.r. takes the view that complaints handling requires specific knowledge and skills. Which is why complaints officers keep their knowledge and skills up to date through continuous education, whereby they are required to periodically earn points by attending training sessions and courses. Customers give a.s.r.’s complaints handlers an average score of 8.4 on a scale of 1 to 10 (2021: 8.4).
The complaints settled figure show the number of upheld and rejected complaints. Upheld complaints are those that are considered partially or fully justified. These include upheld complaints concerning advisors, where a.s.r. acts as a mediator. Rejected complaints are those a.s.r. considers unjustified, i.e. it does not accept the customer’s argument and/or arguments it regards as unfounded.
a.s.r.’s complaints handler decides whether the complaints should be upheld or rejected. All complaints are covered by the four-eyes principle, with one complaints officer running the proposed standpoint to be adopted past a colleague in order to avoid the risk of subjectivity. Complaints officers never handle the same file twice. Nor do they handle the same complaint at a subsequent level of escalation.
Under the slogan What action can achieve (Wat doen kan doen), a.s.r. is taking further steps to minimise the number of complaints it gets about service and performance. Service and performance complaints include, for example, complaints about the time taken to process complaints, lack of expertise and failure to uphold agreements made with the customer. The percentage of service and performance complaints is constantly measured and reported. The proportion of these complaints compared with the total number of complaints has consistently been 65% for a.s.r. as a whole for some time. All business units have therefore been asked to investigate the reasons behind their service and performance complaints and to come up with initiatives to improve things. Officers have also been asked to help think of ways in which agreements can be met more effectively.
In March 2022, Stichting toetsing verzekeraars conducted a survey by order of the Association of Insurers ("Verbond van Verzekeraars") on compliance with the Code of Conduct on Complaints Handling ('Gedragscode Klachtbehandeling') by a.s.r. and other insurers. The purpose of the code is to ensure a customer-friendly complaints procedure in which complaints are processed in a correct and timely manner. The survey awarded a.s.r. satisfactory scores on all aspects.