The Motor Ombudsman, the Ombudsman for the automotive sector, has expanded its in-house alternative dispute resolution (ADR) team.
It comes in response to the growing demand for its adjudication service and The Motor Ombudsman’s commitment to delivering case outcomes and responses to contacts from consumers and accredited businesses within the shortest possible timeframe.
In the 12 months following its launch in November 2016, the organisation has handled more than 40,500 contacts from motorists, in excess of 1,900 cases and over 1,000 requests for information from businesses.
The latest recruitment drive has seen the hiring of three Customer Service Advisors to fill newly-created positions, as well as the appointment of an additional Adjudicator. Bringing extensive experience of customer relations and relationship management, the Advisors play a key role at The Motor Ombudsman. They are responsible for responding to all initial telephone and e-mail consumer contacts by telephone or e-mail, recording the details of a case, and completing all of the preparatory work before the case is worked on by the Adjudicators. This decreases the time it takes for the case to be reviewed and to get an outcome to a customer’s dispute.
The recent increase in headcount brings the number of Adjudicators to four, all of whom have legal degrees, technical training and in-depth knowledge of consumer legislation. Their principal remit is to deliver fair and impartial resolutions to a dispute within the timescales recommended by the Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI), using the facts gathered from the consumer and accredited business.
So far in 2017, issues with the quality of a vehicle at the point of purchase have made up around 12,000 of all contacts received by The Motor Ombudsman. Work which was completed on a car, but which was not agreed beforehand with the customer, accounted for nearly 6,000 of the overall enquiries. Furthermore, the full terms and conditions of a warranty not being included within an advert equated to around 4,500 of the total contacts seen by Customer Service Advisors and Adjudicators up to the end of November.
Holly McAllister, Head of Customer Service and Quality at The Motor Ombudsman, said: “Since we became established just over twelve months ago, more consumers are aware of the benefits of the free and impartial dispute resolution service that we offer and how we can help them to solve their complaint swiftly and easily without the stress of resorting to legal action. Therefore, we have had to evolve as an organisation with a continued focus on streamlining our processes so that we can consistently improve the level of service we offer to businesses and consumers. We expect next year to be even busier, so having a greater level of resource will allow us to ensure that we are well placed to be able to deal with the higher contact and case volumes as we go forward.”