The year 2015 has come and gone, ending yet another record year of penalties issued by the CPSC. As companies face increased pressure to report potential hazards quickly, the professionals who count them as clients are challenged with helping them avoid these situations.
The CPSC’s guidance, “when in doubt, report,” can be a tough sell for manufacturers, especially when an investigation into complaints isn’t clear. Many executives may be concerned that alerting the CPSC will automatically trigger a costly recall. However, many disclosures result in a form of corrective action that helps avoid a recall. Many others require no action at all.
Even in the event that reporting a hazard does lead to a recall, it is important for companies to understand that the price of delaying or failing to report can far exceed the cost of compliance. This hefty price tag comes not only in the form of significant fines, but also in the long-term consequences of bad publicity and loss of public trust.
The vast majority of companies want to do the right thing, but may simply be unsure of what that is in any given crisis situation. That’s where law firms, PR agencies, product testing firms, insurance and risk agencies, crisis management firms, and other trusted partners can help guide their clients to make the right choice, both for their financial future and for public safety.
Encourage clients to develop a robust method for recording and investigating consumer complaints, and emphasize the importance of developing a plan that can be quickly executed in the event of a recall. As outlined in our recent white paper, Top 5 Recall Resolutions of 2016, even when a potential problem occurs, advanced preparation can help ensure a prosperous new year.
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