In a previous This is Money segment we explored the complaints that companies do not answer: why people don’t contact them in time and how to overcome their inefficiencies. In this article, we will focus on The Fixer, the firm that helps The Sun on Sunday to answer its readers’ concerns.
Not long ago we received a complaint about A Guide to Make Love Not War, an online retailer that sells lingerie, watches and kitchenware. The local seller of these items was on behalf of The Sun on Sunday; however, A Guide to Make Love Not War was unwilling to take the complaint and get it resolved.
This didn’t go unnoticed. A Proper Idiot, The Fixer’s online portal, looked at the complaint, the provider and the complainants and found that A Guide to Make Love Not War wasn’t in its systems in relation to The Sun on Sunday’s complaints.
The Fixer ran through the booking system on A Guide to Make Love Not War’s website and found that the seller (Delia Deluca) was the first complaint referred to on 18 August 2018 and was unable to help.
To continue our testing, I went back to Delia’s website and filled in the online form I had previously used. This prompted Delia to answer my question and the complaint was successfully forwarded.
I then looked at A Guide to Make Love Not War’s complaint database and found more out of the ordinary complaints. Many of the complaints I heard about there were about salespeople misleading customers, phoning customers several times and in some cases – wrong price and wrongly description.
The Fixer finds these and can get answers within 24 hours.
From our own investigation, it seems that The Fixer is becoming more involved in firms dealing with complaints that don’t go to resolution with their customer service or monitoring platforms.
The firm was previously known only as the Call Center. Like many small business owners, Mark Hensby set up his Call Centre with the idea of working alone and charging companies to call back a complaint to their client. It was this idea that resulted in The Fixer. The business runs on commission and provided free information to large companies, including investigations, in order to increase the amount of complaints they attend.
The Fixer is funded by Mark Hensby, who gave it away in return for three months of income from The Sun on Sunday. He said: “You can complain online, but not often people do, so I have fixed that.”
Hensby, formerly the president of the Sunshine Chamber of Commerce and a former member of the Advisory Committee of the London Chamber of Commerce, opened up a London office last year with Paul Blakelock, part of a team of dedicated troubleshooters (formally known as Inquiries Assistants).
In the past, much was said about the dodgy way companies contacted customers before selling to them. Hensby said: “It was like mum asking them to hand over a cup of tea to their little boy.” That process still happens but now it is more modern and easier for people to complain and resolve their issues.
Other companies can use The Fixer to find out if their business practice is anything out of the ordinary. “It’s difficult to find out information because it’s all anonymous” said Hensby. “This lets us make sure if it is an offence there is fair process to it.”
As a customer and as a small business owner myself, I have positive results with The Fixer because I didn’t have to think hard about it. I had used Delia in the past as a seller, the customer and the trader did not have a good relation. Now I am very happy I made the first complaint that The Fixer handled and I do not have to worry about it anymore.
Contact The Fixer for free feedback here.