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Giving consumers a real voice
Marlon Naidoo is a man with a mission — to improve levels of customer service in the UK. “When you try to complain, you telephone a call centre, listen to holding music and speak to someone in India,” he said.
“Customers understandably get upset and then the call centre people drop the phone on them.
"We are all pushed for time and it takes a big effort to make a formal complaint if you have to write a letter, find an envelope and post it."
But instead of getting aggravated himself, he has set up a website called irateislate.co.uk to allow customers to voice their complaints, and companies to respond.
He said: “It is the only website like this in the UK which does not ask for personal details from customers. We will not sell on data and we will not use advertising.”
Instead, he plans to charge companies for using the system.
He said: “I ran a courier company in Oxford. We had a contract with Royal Mail and they were very hot on levels of service. We used to get 95 per cent satisfaction but they wanted 100 per cent, which is difficult when you are trying to deliver something and people are not at home.
“Companies need to respond to complaints. We are saying you should not be looking at complaints in a negative way.
“If someone was complaining about my company I would want to make sure that I was offering the best possible service.”
Mr Naidoo moved to the UK from South Africa in 2003 and managed a branch of Floors-2-Go in Oxford before joining DHL as an owner-driver.
He started his own courier business with two vehicles, growing it into a company with clients including Royal Mail, DHL and Artisan Queen of Hearts, but had to close when the recession hit.
He fell into a depression, but decided “the only one that can change my life is myself. I decided to get back into the working environment and thought that would give me a bit of confidence again.”
He started part-time work at Pizza Hut while using his savings to build his new venture, working from his home in Marston. He hopes Irateislate will become profitable by next year.
Mr Naidoo said: “Businesses can use it to monitor their own ratings and also those of their competitors.
“We have also created a ‘compliment’ button which they can put on their own websites.
They can improve their reputation and keep customers they might otherwise lose.”