ScS has joined the Furniture & Home Improvement Ombudsman (FHIO).

The announcement coincides with the Sunderland-based retailer broadening its shopping experience to customers with the launch of a new-concept store, digital room visualisation app and product QR codes designed to support consumer omnichannel experiences (see related).

By joining the FHIO scheme, ScS has signalled a commitment to raising standards by signing up to a Code of Practice and promoting consumer confidence, adding another layer of protection for the customer, whether they purchase in store or online.

In addition, membership underlines industry best practice and an undertaking to manage complaints formally and at a level that is higher than the law prescribes. Access is provided to an established City & Guilds learning and development programme, and a dedicated, legally trained ombudsman team.

Consumers benefit too, as they will be able to raise a complaint with the ombudsman for free, if they are unable to resolve the complaint through existing channels or internal procedures.

Kevin Grix, CEO and chief ombudsman, the FHIO, says: “As we’re in the midst of a cost of living crisis with many facing a difficult winter ahead, at this time, more than ever, it’s important that consumers are able to enforce their rights and have access to redress. On the rare occasion things should go wrong, there is a mechanism in place to help rectify matters and knowing that a business subscribes to an ombudsman provides an additional layer of protection and reassurance to customers and businesses alike.

“For a third of a century, businesses have improved and learnt from the ombudsman, and by registering to our scheme, have demonstrated a very tangible commitment to raising standards. Joining the ombudsman is testament that ScS is serious about their responsibilities, they’ve listened to their customers and are committed to getting it right for them – we’d therefore like to commend them for registering to our independent, Government-approved scheme.”

Marie Liston, corporate services director at ScS, adds: “We’ve been working closely with the FHIO over the last 12 months, who has delivered City and Guilds-accredited training, to our customer experience team. Joining FHIO demonstrates our ongoing commitment to deliver seamless customer experience, offering value, quality and choice, alongside our five-star Trustpilot rating, whilst we ensure that we provide additional peace of mind to our customers.”