Recommendations put forward by the panel in its annual report include a need for the scheme’s 33 members to carry out a series of post-launch research before bringing new products to market.
Members are being encouraged to design appropriate products to meet a customer need and ensure that when designed the products are correctly aligned with target customer groups.
The recommendation comes after 33 per cent of members’ customers said product development and service met consumer needs, down from 34 per cent in the 2007/08 Customer Impact Survey.
The report, which includes the panel’s commentary on the CIS 2008/09, also recommends that companies consider their key features documents against the relevant section of the scheme’s practice guide, and improve the clarity of written communications, which the report says “remains an area of concern”.
All participating firms are being encouraged to continue with a strong focus on complaint handling after the survey found 55 per cent of those polled felt their complaint had been poorly handled during 2008/09.
Customer Impact Panel chairman Mike Ross says: “Steady progress has been made by the companies involved in the scheme, and we are pleased that this year, three new members signed up to it.
“The Scheme is evolving all the time, and the panel, together with the ABI, is working on a five-year plan for its development and expansion. We expect to make further announcements about this later in the year.”