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Comments, Compliments and Complaints


We welcome all feedback from customers and value any suggestions you may have about our services. This leaflet tells you briefly how we deal with complaints, comments and compliments. If you want a full copy of our complaints policy, please let us know and we will send you one. The policy is also available on our website www.shropshirehousing.org.uk

Comments & suggestions: If you have a comment or suggestion to make about our services or have an idea about how we can improve our services, please tell us. We will look at your suggestion and see if we can use it. We will let you know what we have done with it once we have considered it.

Compliments: We also welcome compliments about our staff or our service. If you want to make a compliment, please tell us. We will acknowledge your compliment and will pass it on to the staff or team concerned to ensure that they know that good customer service is recognised as important to our organisation and to our customers.

Complaints: We aim to ensure that all customers receive a high standard of service at all times. However, we know that occasionally we or our contractors will make mistakes or our services may not come up to an acceptable standard and customers may wish to complain.

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If you have any queries about the quality of service you can expect from us, please ask a member of staff; many queries can be sorted out this way. If you wish to complain about the service or think your query has not been dealt with properly then let us know.

What is a complaint and who can complain to us? We regard a complaint as an expression of dissatisfaction with the standard of our service, an action we take or the fairness of a policy. A request for a service, such as the first report of a repair or of neighbour nuisance will not be treated as a complaint. But it will be dealt with by the relevant staff, who will let you know what they can do to help. We accept complaints from anyone who receives a service from us, anyone who is affected directly or indirectly by our services or activities and from anyone acting on their behalf. If you would prefer to have your complaint dealt with by or with the support of someone, for example, a friend, relative or solicitor, you can, as long as you make it clear at the start that this person or organisation is authorised to represent you. We urge customers not to make anonymous complaints as this seriously hampers our ability to respond effectively to them and sometimes makes the situation worse.

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We promise to: • make it easy for customers to complain • take all complaints seriously and investigate them thoroughly • deal with complaints promptly, efficiently and courteously • treat all complaints confidentially and fairly, without prejudice or discrimination • keep complainants informed about the progress and outcome of their complaint • apologise when we have got things wrong.

How to make a complaint You can make a complaint to us in person, on the phone, by email, or in writing (e.g. on a complaints form or by letter). If you would like us to make a copy of your complaint for your records - please tell us and we will provide one. Our contact details are shown on the back of this leaflet.

What happens if you make a complaint? Stage 1 • We will acknowledge receipt of your complaint the same day we receive it or on the next working day.

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• You will be told who will be investigating your complaint. Complaints are usually investigated by the relevant Head of Service. • We aim to investigate your complaint and respond fully to you within 10 working days. If we can do so more quickly, then we will. • If we cannot reply fully within 10 working days, then we will contact you and explain why. We will let you know when you will receive a full response.

Stage 2 • If you are not satisfied with the response to your complaint then you can ask for it to be investigated by an Executive Director (unless the complaint is about that person, in which case it will be dealt with by the Group Chief Executive). You need to tell them why you are not happy with the initial response to your complaint. • The Executive Director will review the complaint and will respond to you within 10 working days wherever possible.

Stage 3 • If, after review by the Executive Director, you are still not happy that your complaint has been fully dealt with, you can make an appeal to the board of management. You should contact the Chair of the Board at the address shown on the back of this leaflet, explaining why you are dissatisfied with the replies you have received so far. If you write to the Chair, mark your envelope private and confidential.

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• The Chair of the Board will arrange for a panel of board members to meet and consider your complaint – usually within 10 working days. You will be invited to attend the panel meeting. The panel will consider the complaint whether you come or not. • You will be told the outcome of your appeal to the panel within 3 working days of the panel meeting.

Stage 4 If you are unhappy with the way we have dealt with your complaint, you can complain to the Housing Ombudsman, who is able to carry out an impartial investigation. The Ombudsman will not usually deal with a complaint unless you have tried to deal with it first through the association’s own complaints process. Leaflets explaining how to complain to the Housing Ombudsman are available from our offices or your local Citizens Advice Bureau. You can also contact them directly at: Housing Ombudsman Service 81 Aldwych, London WC2B 4HN Tel: Lo-call: Minicom: Fax: E-mail:

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020 7421 3800 0845 7125 793 020 7404 7092 020 7831 1942 info@housing-ombudsman.org.uk


Learning from complaints We want to learn from complaints and other feedback to improve our services and to prevent mistakes from happening in the future. • Regularly review complaints to identify any common themes and to share anything we learn across the Group. • Report to tenants and board members on how promptly we deal with complaints. • Publicise our performance and what use we have made of complaints, comments and compliments to improve our services at least once a year. • Seek feedback from customers on how we have handled their complaint and will seek to improve our complaints handling in response to this feedback.

Help us to deal with your complaints 4 Be as specific as possible about your complaint – this makes it much easier for us to investigate. 4 Keep a note of relevant times and dates. 4 Keep a note of the names of the staff you speak to. 4 Let us know your contact details, how and when it is best to contact you. 4 Let us know what you would like us to do.

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We recognise the damage that disadvantage and discrimination can cause. We are committed to equal opportunities and will take positive steps to ensure that you will not be treated less favourably than anyone else in your dealings with us because of race, religion, gender, marital status, sexual orientation, disability, class or age. Access for all... If you require this document in another format, for example Braille, large type, audio tape or another language please contact us.

Meres and Mosses Housing Association Talbot House, High Street, Wem SY4 5AA Freephone: 0800 434 6289 Tel: 01939 238 840 Email: enquiries@mmha.org.uk

www.shropshirehousing.org.uk

Shropshire Housing Group consists of the following organisations

55375: 02/06/2010

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Equal Opportunities statement


55375_MMHA_Complaints_Leaflet