What is an Adjustment Letter?

An adjustment letter is an example of a business letter addressing a complaint made by a customer towards a product or service. A manager, a business representative, or human resource personnel writes the adjustment letter addressed to the complainant. It also contains information about accepting or rejecting the complaint issued. The letter details the nature of the complaint along with the urgency and lists down ways the company addresses it. Upon acceptance, it informs the complainant of the likelihood of a refund and how to obtain it. Adjustment letters deal with various types of complaints ranging from defective goods and shipment issues. The principal purpose of adjustment letters is to resolve or ‘adjust’ any conflict or misunderstanding between a company and the customer.

According to the Consumer Complaint Database created by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, 98% of complaints made by consumers are sent to companies and get timely responses. From the data collected, companies take consumer complaints seriously and are willing to make resolutions and adjustments. It is a positive response knowing that companies seek to offer the best to their clients.

The Parts of an Adjustment Letter

An adjustment letter is made either through formal business letters or emails. The adjustment letter must reach the complainant with the notion of addressing the problems concerned. Each adjustment letter should contain the following components to satisfy the customers’ concerns.

Sender’s Details: Part of the header of the letter, the sender’s details must appear. It must include the sender’s full name, the address of the company, and contact information. Make sure to identify the sender’s position in the company. If the manager addresses the complaint, include their job title in the details.Complainant’s Details: Also a part of the header, the complainant’s details include their full name, mailing address, and contact information. Remember, including the complainant’s information in this format is a standard for a business letter and must be followed.Subject line and salutations: It is necessary to remember that the letter is to address one specific person. Also, ensure that there are no errors in spelling the name of the complainant. In the subject line, you state the problem with clarity and briefness. Having the predicament in the opening for the letter informs the client about what the letter contains.Introduction: Always remember to start the letter on a positive note. Include that you are pleased to hear from the client and express concern regarding the troublesome circumstance they experienced. Introduce yourself to the client and include the reason for writing the letter. It is also relevant to include the date when the complaint was received and brought to your attention. Refrain from repeating the grievance in detail. It is also important to remember to address your client respectfully throughout the letter. Body of the letter: In the body of your letter, it is essential to restate the crucial facts of the complaint. It gives the reader a clear understanding that you have understood the grievance they were identifying. It is also necessary to state why the problem arose in the first place. It allows you to give the client a better understanding of the situation. Avoid long explanations and make the information concise and specific. Most clients do not want to hear excuses and difficulties the company is facing. They are writing for the company to solve the problem immediately. Afterward, propose a solution to the problem. Specifically, describe what the management plans on fixing the situation along with the customer. If the client is right, admit the mistake and the cause of inconvenience, along with compensation or guarantee there is resolution to the error. List the steps you are planning to take or have already taken. In doing so, it gives the client a view of what the company is doing. In cases where the protest is groundless, the representative must state a calm and courteous denial. It is imperative to use that tone to maintain positive connections with the client. Make sure that the client understands the company aspires the best and puts the customer’s happiness first.Conclusion: It is essential to end the letter positively. Thank the client for their patience and cooperation. Assure the client that such events occur rarely and that the company will guarantee every means to prevent a similar situation from happening. Express confidence in the client’s continued patronage of services and merchandise offered. Closing remarks and signature: Include an emergency contact number or email for the client in case of questions or clarifications. Finish the letter with regards and don’t forget to sign your name as the respondent of the complaint.

How to Write an Adjustment Letter

Writing an adjustment letter is crucial in any business handling customer and employee complaints. There are many factors to be considered in writing an adjustment letter. Ensure that you follow the steps provided below to maintain and professional and empathetic approach to answering grievances.

Step 1: Organize Your Material

The writer of the letter must prepare, compile, and organize all related correspondence of the client and the business, a copy of the complaint, company policies that cover the nature of the complaint, and any other relevant documents. It is essential to have sufficient knowledge about the complaint and what procedures to follow.

Step 2: Prepare a Proper Response Towards the Complaint

It means addressing the mistake and constructing a positive answer. Remember that if the company is at fault, promptly accept it and proceed to correct the problem. If the customer offers sensible demands, the company must ensure that it is delivered. It is also essential to sympathize with your client and listen to their distress. Maintain a positive attitude and tone towards the customer to ensure a healthy relationship with them despite the grievances.

Step 3: Practice Diplomacy

When the client’s complaint and demands are unreasonable and unjustifiable, the company must remain diplomatic. Even after the refusal of requests, the customer remains satisfied with the service. It is also beneficial to explain the company policy and procedure in easily comprehensible words for the client to understand the terms and conditions that apply.

Step 4: Guarantee Politeness

In customer service, politeness is a virtue upheld and encouraged at all times. Despite the clients being at fault, it is your responsibility to satisfy their needs while sustaining company policy. A polite response maintains a positive relationship with the clients and promotes the company’s reliability.

Step 5: Validate and Proofread the Letter

The adjustment letter is an official letter signed by the company. As such, the company’s letterhead is present at the top of the letter. It is also advantageous to proofread the letter before addressing it back to the complainant. Facts and provisions are reviewed and associated with the system. It is also advisable to keep a copy of the letter for future reference and record-keeping.

Types of Adjustment Letters

Adjustment letters take on many forms depending on their purpose. The company’s adjustment policy, the liability, and the relationship with customers are factors that govern an adjustment letter. The objections made define the structure of the letter. Here are examples of the types of adjustment letters.

Letter granting adjustment: A letter granting adjustment is written by the company to a client when a claim is proven true and gives complete compensation for a service or product. The letter must express regret for the mistakes caused by the business genuinely. In the letter, the seller admits the mistakes and assures no similar problems will arise. The company also states an apology and would most likely consider an adjustment even when the client or a third party is responsible for the mistake.Letter informing of further investigation: If a company wants an issuance of additional examination regarding the errors, the company writes a letter informing the client. An interim reply is sent to the customer that the claim is undergoing investigation. After the seller receives the letter, it is a must for an urgent response because a delay causes more complications. In the letter, there is neither acceptance nor denial of the claim.Letter refusing adjustment: If a claim is false, and the buyer is at fault, a company writes a letter stating refusal or rejection. The company must offer assistance and a promise of satisfaction to promote goodwill and maintain a good relationship with the customer.Letter offering partial adjustment: An offer of compromise is a way to sustain good relations with the client. In the case a client specifies for reimbursement or replacement, the company must deliver such demands immediately. The letter clears out different opinions by seller and buyer about quality standards of goods and services, and the fault is beyond anyone’s control. Letter of apology: In case a client does not offer any terms regarding the claim, the company writes a letter of apology. The tone of the letter must be polite and welcoming. It expresses regret to the client over the inconvenience, and thanks for pointing out the errors.Letter offering dissatisfaction over the claim: If the client shows discontent over the goods and services by the company, the client informs of stoping further orders. The company, in turn, offers several alternatives and adjustments to maintain a good relationship with the client.

FAQs

What is the difference between an adjustment letter and a letter of complaint?

Firstly, the company addresses a complaint made by a customer through an adjustment letter. Meanwhile, a customer writes a letter of complaint or a claim letter requesting compensation for damaged, defective, incomplete, inadequate, or delayed products and services. An adjustment letter follows a client’s complaint letter. According to an article published by Market Watch dated March 1st, 2021, a surge of complaints rose to 50% from 2019 to 2020 with concerns about consumer financial products and services. From the data, it means that more customers had unpleasant experiences regarding consumer products and services. It is no wonder clients are voicing their concerns, especially when the pandemic struck businesses and the workforce.

Are you required to write an adjustment letter after receiving a formal complaint?

Some company policies highlight the need to write an adjustment letter. However, it is not explicitly stated that a company or a business must reply to a complaint. Despite this, the company must address the problems or claims that involve a customer. After all, the customer is a part of the company’s growth. The satisfaction of the customer is a company’s priority. Also, when the company addresses the complaint, it shows the customers the company cares about them. A company cannot run without its customers, consumers, and even employees. Note that employees can also submit complaints about salary deficit or delay. It is also the company’s initiative to make sure that their employees feel care and concern. By ensuring that both employees and clients are happy, the company prospers and grows.

What are the top 10 complaints made by American consumers?

According to the study by the Consumer Federation of America published in July 2020, the top complaint made by consumers in 2019 is concerning automobiles. The most common complaint about autos is the misinterpretations in advertisements and sales. The problems include deceptive financing methods, defective vehicles, substandard repairs, car leasing, and towing disputes. Next on the list is home constructions, including poor craftsmanship, job completion problems, licensing, and registration difficulties. Retail sales also get complaints. Most of the complaints are about false advertising, defective merchandise, rebate problems, vouchers, and delivery issues. Complaints also happen between landlords and tenants. The complaints revolve around unsafe conditions, lack of amenities, deposit and rent conflicts, and illegal evictions. The fifth complaint is regarding credits and debts and includes billings, fees, mortgage, predatory lending, and collections. Complaints regarding communications and services are also present because of misleading offers, installation issues, connectivity problems, and underperformance. Health products and services also suffer complaints from consumers. Misleading claims, unlicensed practitioners, and billing issues are some of the obstacles listed by consumers. Clients encounter complaints about utilities such as gas, water, electricity, and even cable. Fraud and household goods tie for ninth place. The fraud complaints from consumers listed bogus lotteries, grant offers, and check scams. Household goods complaints include repair and construction issues on furniture. The last place is internet sales with complaints about deceptive promises and purchases.

What is the importance of an adjustment letter?

An adjustment letter is significant because it assures the customers that the company is concerned about them. It also gives reassurance that the company is willing to communicate with them regarding the concerns they raise. After all, the goal of an adjustment letter is to fix any issues that the customers claim to experience.

Every day is a risky business in the corporate world. There are unforeseen circumstances around the corner just waiting to happen. You must accept that these instances happen. However, it must not come as a hindrance to you and the company’s daily operations. If anything, you must already prepare for such events. In preparedness and planning, you can counter undesirable problems from both clients and employees. Upon receiving a complaint letter, remember to develop and write a letter that is formal and empathetic. It ensures your clients that you care and you are willing to make compromises to satisfy their needs. In the words of the famous writer C.S. Lewis, “Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less.” Show empathy to the client’s claims and ensure a healthy relationship. Check out the adjustment letter templates above.