Financial firms have agreed to make improvements to the way they deal with consumer complaints after collaborating with a Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) review.
The FCA added that it will be consulting on possible changes to its dispute resolution rules later this year.
The review did not deal with PPI complaints which have been dealt with separately.
Although the watchdog found some improvements and innovations have already been made there were areas that were identified as requiring further improvement.
They include firms not always considering the impact on consumers when designing and implementing processes as well as inconsistencies in the amount of redress offered, particularly for distress and inconvenience.
A working group made a number of recommendations on how complaints could be improved including changes to FCA rules.
These include ensuring that calls to dedicated complaints telephone lines cost no more than the basic rate and extending the next business day rule so that firms have longer to get consumer acceptance that the complaint has been resolved.
The FCA confirmed that it wants all financial firms to consider its findings and not just the fifteen that took part in the review.
Clive Adamson, director of supervision at the FCA, said: “Straightforward and effective complaints handling is an important aspect of how firms treat their customers.
“Correctly handled, they can help firms quickly deal with problems and keep their customers happy. Moreover, understanding the underlying reasons for complaints can help head off future problems.