If some organisation like a big financial company (Aviva to give a specific for this case) writes to me as a customer with some information about our mutual business and I then write back asking for clarification of a couple of points and also if they could send the leaflet which they had stated was enclosed but which had in fact been left out, then I am probably making an enquiry, not a complaint.

Unfortunately, in a canny move to improve the negativity of their customer rankings, Avivia seem to have decided to treat all letters as complaints and their first, and so far only, response is to write back saying that they are investigating my complaint and enclosing a leaflet about their complaints procedure which informs me that my complaint will be fully investigated normally within 10 working days.

This excessively defensive posture must bring them competitive advantages in that they don't have to waste time dealing with their customer's genuine questions, but can merely send them a standard letter after 10 days saying that they have investigated the "complaint" and that they don't think it is justified.

Which of course it isn't as it wasn't a complaint in the first place. Well done Avivia for implementing this effective method of kicking troublesome queries into the long grass.

Perhaps I should write back complaining about their handling of my non-complaint...