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Credit Services Association

2 Esh Plaza

Sir Bobby Robson Way

Great Park

Newcastle Upon Tyne

NE13 9BA


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Additional Sections

Complaints Procedure

Useful Links

Making a complaint

We work hard to ensure our Members act within the rules set by the industry regulators.

Please click on the following link and read our Code of Practice. If you think a Member has broken the rules of this Code you can make a complaint by downloading our Complaints Form.

Before making a complaint we would encourage you to carry out the following activities:


  • Go to the Members Directory and check whether the company you wish to complain about is a Member of the CSA. If you are still unsure, feel free to contact us. If the company is a Member of the CSA then we are able to help you with your complaint.
  • On first instance, we recommend you contact the Member company to discuss any issues you have and enquire about their complaints process. If you are still dissatisfied with the outcome then you can review our Complaints Procedure.
  • If you believe that the Member has acted in breach of our Code of Practice and the complaint meets the necessary criteria, please complete, sign and return the Complaint Form to our registered address.

CSA Complaints Procedure

 How we deal with your complaint.

All complaints must be submitted in writing, with a signed complaint form. We require the form to be signed so that we, and our member, have the requisite authorisation to share information.

The following is the sequence of events after the CSA receive a complaint form;

  • CSA receive a signed complaint form
  • CSA register the complaint and send a copy to the relevant member company
  • The member is given eight weeks to respond directly to the complainant
  • CSA get a copy of the response from the member company
  • CSA considers both positions and determines whether the Code of Practice has been breached
  • Appropriate action is taken (if required) to remedy the situation
  • If further information is required the CSA contact the relevant party (the complainant or the member company).
  • After a full review, the CSA provides a formal response to the complainant


If you remain unhappy with the outcome of the complaint, you may have justification to escalate the matter to our our head of compliance, Claire Aynsley,


Please note: The CSA can only intervene when;

  • a member company is in breach of the Code.
  • the company is a member of the CSA (we cannot act when the complaint is about the client of a member company, a bank or building society for example).
  • the information supplied by a member company appears from the facts to be incorrect.

Methods of Contact



Credit Services Association

Complaints Department

2 Esh Plaza

Sir Bobby Robson Way


NE13 9BA


Why the CSA need a signed copy of your complaint




Meeting the needs of the ‘Accidental Manager’

By Fiona Macaskill, Head of Learning and Development, The Credit Services Association (CSA)

There have been two very interesting articles recently, one in the Harvard Business Review (HBR) and another in the Financial Times, about the quality of ‘management’, and how under-trained and under-valued managers are invariably behind poorly performing businesses.

Most of us, I am sure, are aware of the Peter Principle, as outlined in a book written almost 50 years ago by Dr. Laurence J. Peter. In it, he describes the following paradox: if organisations promote the best people at their current jobs, then they will inevitably promote people until they’re no longer good at their jobs. In other words, organisations manage careers so that everyone ‘rises to the level of their incompetence.’

Many of us, similarly, will have seen the Peter Principle in action, even if we were not necessarily aware that the phenomenon had a ‘name’. If we take my own industry, and the world of debt collection, the skills that make an individual the best collector on the collections floor, for example, do not necessarily translate into the skills that are required to make them the best collections manager. Promoting them to a level of incompetence only means you lose a top performing collector to gain a poor performing manager.

This becomes a challenge, namely whether to reward a top performer with a promotion, or rather promote the worker that has the best skill sets for a managerial position. And sometimes, of course, that means recruiting from outside of the business, which can be incredibly de-motivating for those already there and with their eye on the top prize.

The article in the HBR makes this precise point: the best engineer doesn’t make the best engineering manager, and the best professor doesn’t make the best dean. The principle applies in any industry or sector but the outcome is always the same.

Businesses have long struggled with the Peter Principle and looked for alternative ways of rewarding staff, principally through enhanced pay. Studies have found that businesses with the strongest pay-for-performance also choose and promote the best managers, especially when it came to sales. Staff did not feel that their careers were in any way ‘blocked’ by ‘failing’ to reach a management level, neither did it impact their ability to earn more money.

Promotions, however, are not simply about pay. They satisfy a much broader desire to be recognised, and so the challenge is not so easily solved simply by throwing money at it. Another way of addressing the challenge is by providing future managers with the training and support needed to take the first steps onto the managerial ladder.

The Financial Times makes reference to a group known as ‘accidental managers’, a term coined by the UK’s Chartered Institute of Management. The CIM is concerned that too many employees are promoted to managerial roles with little or no preparation. To give some idea of the size of the problem, it believes that as many as three million current managers are there by accident rather than design, and are promoted simply because they are good at their existing job.

So what are we doing to prepare the next generation of manager, and in turn support a more qualified and professional workforce? Again, if I look at my own industry, our Association is addressing the challenge with dedicated leadership and management courses, starting with our Level 3 Award, Certificate and Diploma which has specific units focused around leading a team. Our Level 5 Diploma in Compliance Risk Management also provides a clear progression route for future managers in a specific area of competence and equips candidates with the management skills required to develop a compliance strategy and manage the compliance team accordingly. The CSA also sits on the Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers (RoATP) as a Main Provider and currently delivers a Level 3 Team Leader Supervisor apprenticeship in addition to a number of management qualifications through to Level 6.

We will not be alone in looking at this challenging issue. I am sure that all of us in our respective industries recognise the need to create training and development programmes that equip our people with the skills and the competences as managers to take them all the way to the top. My wish is that in the future, it will be no accident that the top performing businesses and most rewarding working environments will be led and created by a new generation of professionally supported and qualified manager.