Feedback and Complaints Policy

OUTSIDE / Support Staffordshire is committed to ensuring that we provide the best possible services to all our customers, service users, beneficiaries, funders, donors and investors; proportionate to the available resources. 

We plan our services to deliver the highest possible quality and the broadest reach across Staffordshire, but we recognise that feedback from those experiencing our services will always be a useful means of continually improving services and responding to changing needs, demand or operating environment. 

We will build in user feedback mechanisms to all of our services including through immediate feedback and more reflective means. We will offer both hard copy and electronic means of feedback. Feedback will be reported to managers, the executive team and the Board of Trustees regularly. 

Although we plan to always deliver good services, we recognise from time to time that people wish to give constructive criticism or to complain about services and we will ensure they are able to do so in a straightforward way. Support Staffordshire sees this as a positive way of monitoring the service and ensuring that any necessary changes are made, as well as ensuring any redress that is necessary for individual complaints. 

Complaints procedure

In the case of complaints, we hope that these can, wherever possible, be dealt with there and then and that no further action will be necessary. In the first instance please raise your concern with the member of staff you have been dealing with. If you have been dealing with a Support Staffordshire volunteer, you can ask to speak to their line manager.

Support Staffordshire is a Company Limited by Guarantee (Registered in England & Wales No. 8967045); and a Registered Charity (No. 1161077). Registered address: Mansell House, 22 Bore Street, Lichfield, Staffordshire, WS13 6LL. If you are not able to resolve the concern through this route, please follow the procedure below to make a formal complaint:

1. If you wish to make a formal complaint, please contact the Operations Manager covering your locality – either Northern Staffordshire or Southern Staffordshire. You can call them or ask to see them in person using 0300 7771207. We will usually ask you to also put your concerns down in writing, which can include an email. 

Written complaints should be marked private and confidential as well as for urgent attention. If you receive an out of office email notification you may need to redirect your complaint accordingly.

2. Receipt of your written complaint will normally be acknowledged in writing within 7 days.

3. The Operations Manager may ask you to meet them in person or seek a further telephone conversation in order to fully understand the complaint. You may wish to bring a friend, advocate or representative if you think this is appropriate.

4. Following this a full investigation will take place and the Operations Manager of Support Staffordshire will advise of the result in writing, normally within 28 days.

5. Whilst we will do our best to advise you of the outcome of the complaint, there are circumstances where it is not possible or not appropriate to explain the outcome to you in full. For example, where the complaint leads to disciplinary action for an employee, we may only be able to tell you that disciplinary procedures are taking place, not the detail of that action.

6. If you are not satisfied with the result of our investigation you can ask for the Chief Executive to review the complaint and the outcome. We ask that you do so in writing within 7 days of the outcome being notified to you. This may result in further correspondence or investigation as appropriate.

7. If the matter is still not resolved the Chief Executive may refer the case to the Board of Trustees who will be the final arbiters of the complaint.

8. If the complaint is about the Chief Executive, you should address the complaint to the Chair of Support Staffordshire in the first instance.

Complaints Monitoring 

The Board of Trustees receive quarterly reports detailing the number and nature of complaints as well as any action taken