A Future-Fit Business gives a voice to its customers by actively soliciting any concerns they have, impartially investigating them, and fairly and transparently acting to address legitimate grievances.
What this goal means
Other customer/product goals concern the ethical marketing of products, the potential for products to cause harm, whether products emit greenhouse gases, and how to ensure goods can be repurposed at the end of their useful life. By living up to all of these goals, a company can minimize the number of concerns its customers have. However, it is important that customers are able to voice concerns – and to have those concerns fairly addressed – if they feel that a company has fallen short of meeting its obligations.
To be Future-Fit, a company must therefore put in place effective policies and processes to actively solicit, impartially judge and transparently address customer concerns relating to the environmental and social impact of its products.
These requirements encompass both final products designed for end users, and interim products (e.g. manufactured components and synthetic materials) which are incorporated into final products by other companies further down the sales chain.
This goal extends to include concerns raised on behalf of individual customers, such as those raised by NGOs and consumer groups. Transparency is critical here. For example, if a product fault is reported which could jeopardize people’s health, the company should act swiftly and openly to address it.
Why this goal is needed...
Customers have a right to be made aware of instances when there are issues with products.
According to the OECD, there are more than 17,000 products worldwide that are currently subject to a recall for safety reasons.