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BABCP Organisational Complaints Policy

Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to ensure that BABCP provides a high-quality service that is inclusive and equitable for all, and to provide a clear and transparent process for addressing and resolving complaints about our services. We are committed to promoting equality, equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) in all aspects of our operations, and this policy reflects our commitment to these values. We strive to handle all complaints fairly, efficiently, and with respect for the complainant, and we recognise the diversity of our membership and the communities we serve. This policy aims to provide a consistent and effective approach to resolving complaints that is inclusive of all members, regardless of their background or identity. We will use the information gained from complaints to improve the quality of our services and to promote greater equity and inclusion within our organisation. Our commitment to EDI is reflected in all aspects of our work, and this policy is an important part of our efforts to create a more inclusive and equitable professional community.

Scope

This policy applies to all formal complaints made against the services provided by BABCP, including complaints related to issues such as customer service, communication, and the delivery of services. The policy is applicable to all BABCP members, clients, and stakeholders who have interacted with our organisation, and who have reason to believe that our service has fallen below the high standards that we aim to uphold. The policy aims to provide a clear and transparent process for resolving complaints, while ensuring that complaints are handled fairly and efficiently. The scope of the policy is intended to be broad and inclusive, while also recognising the limits of what can be addressed through the complaints process.

Definition of a complaint

Complaints are expressions of dissatisfaction with the services provided by BABCP, and may be made by any member, client, or stakeholder who has interacted with our organisation. Complaints may relate to any aspect of our services, including customer service, communication, and the delivery of services. To be considered a formal complaint under this policy, the expression of dissatisfaction must be made in writing or through an official complaints channel, such as by email, letter, or telephone call to our Complaints team.

We take all complaints seriously, and we are committed to handling them promptly, fairly, and efficiently. We value all feedback received, and we view complaints as opportunities to learn and improve the quality of our services.

Complaints may include issues such as:

  • Failure to provide a service or meet a service standard
  • Poor communication or a lack of information
  • Rude or unprofessional behaviour by BABCP staff
  • Delays or mistakes in processing requests or applications
  • Issues related to billing or payments
  • Concerns about the quality or effectiveness of our services

Complaints made under this policy will be handled in accordance with our Complaints Handling Procedure, and we will make every effort to resolve complaints in a timely and effective manner. We value all feedback received, and we view complaints as opportunities to learn and improve the quality of our services.

Our promise

If you’ve been in touch with BABCP and feel that our service hasn’t met the high standards you should expect, you have a right to make a complaint. We take all complaints seriously and we’ll listen to you to find a fair and balanced way to seek to put things right. If you have reason to raise a formal complaint with us, we promise to:

  • follow our company values and act with integrity, openness, honesty, fairness and respect
  • strive for the highest standards
  • listen and learn

Process for making a complaint

The process for making a complaint is designed to make it easy for you to raise concerns about the services we provide. We understand that making a complaint can be a difficult decision, and we are committed to providing you with a range of channels through which you can do so.

We hope that you don’t have reason to complain, however, any matters raised will be progressed in a professional and respectful manner.

If you call us, our complaints or membership team may be able to help address any issues or concerns you have without raising a complaint.

If you wish to raise a formal complaint about the services provided by BABCP, you may do so through a variety of channels, including email, telephone, or post. To ensure that complaints are handled promptly and efficiently, we encourage complainants to raise their concerns through the following steps:

Contact BABCP's Complaints team: The first step in making a complaint is to contact our Complaints team directly. This can be done by emailing internalcomplaints@babcp.com, by calling 0300 320 0851, or by sending a letter to the following address:

Professional Conduct Team, BABCP, Imperial House, Hornby Street, Bury, BL9 5BN.

When making a complaint, we encourage you to provide as much detail as possible about your complaint, including your name, contact information, and a detailed description of the issue. This information will help us to investigate your complaint thoroughly and respond to you promptly.

You should also provide the date and time of the incident, the name or details of any staff members involved, and any relevant evidence (such as documents, recordings, or photographs) to support your complaint.

If you are unsure about what information to include in your complaint, our Complaints team will be happy to assist you. They can provide guidance on what types of information are useful for an effective investigation and how to present your complaint in a clear and concise manner.

Initial response

Once a complaint is received, we will acknowledge the complaint within five working days. If the complaint has been made in writing, we will provide you with a reference number and advise you of the next steps in the process.

Investigation

If the complaint cannot be resolved quickly and informally, we will begin an investigation to gather additional information and evidence. This investigation may involve contacting relevant staff members or reviewing records, as necessary. We aim to complete our investigation within 20 working days of receipt of the complaint. If the investigation takes longer than this, we will contact you to explain why and agree on an extension to the timeline.

Response

When we have completed our investigation, we will provide you with a final decision in writing. This decision will explain the outcome of the investigation, any actions we will take to address your concerns, and the reasons behind our decision.

This response will be sent to you within 20 working days of completing the investigation.

We view complaints as opportunities to learn and improve our services, and we are committed to ensuring that our complaints process is transparent, fair, and efficient.

Escalation

If you remain dissatisfied with our response, you can ask for your complaint to be reviewed by the Internal Appeals Panel. The panel consists of key staff members from different areas of BABCP who’ll review your complaint and our initial response. Once reviewed, a member of the panel will respond to you within 20 working days, the panel will explain the reasons behind any decision made.

In the unlikely event that the panel are unable to provide a full response within 20 working days, we’ll contact you to explain why and will provide an estimated response time.

The decision of the Internal Appeals Panel is final and there is no further right of appeal to BABCP. If you are not satisfied with our final decision, we will explain the options available to you for further action. This may include referring your complaint to an independent body such as the Professional Standards Authority (PSA), who provide oversight of professional regulators. We will provide you with guidance on how to do this and any time limits that may apply.

What we can't look into

This process only relates to complaints about the service provided by BABCP. There are some things we can’t deal with through our service complaints process. Examples are:

  • any decisions made under our Standards of Conduct, Performance and Ethics
  • requests for information (i.e. subject access requests)
  • any attempt to have a previous complaint reconsidered

If you have a complaint about a BABCP member, this can be reviewed by our Professional Conduct team, subject to our Professional Conduct Procedure.

If your concerns can’t be dealt with under our service complaint policy, we'll contact you and explain the reason why.

How we’ll put it right

If things have gone wrong, we will:

  • explain what went wrong
  • apologise and tell you how we’re putting things right
  • review our existing processes and provide further staff training if needed to prevent the same issues occurring in the future

How long do I have to make a complaint?

Normally, we’d expect you to contact us within a month of you finding out you have reason to complain. We may be able to accept your complaint after this deadline in exceptional circumstances.

Should you wish to appeal the outcome of your complaint and raise this with the Internal Appeals Panel, this should be done within 6 months of the original complaint. If an appeal has not been raised within this timescale, the complaint will be considered closed with no further right of appeal.

Unreasonable complaint behaviour or vexatious complaints

We’re committed to dealing with all complaints fairly and impartially. Although rare, there may be occasions when we believe an individual’s behaviour is unreasonable or that a complaint is vexatious. A complaint may be regarded as unreasonable or vexatious when the person making the complaint:

  • refuses to articulate or specify the grounds of a complaint, despite assistance from BABCP staff
  • doesn’t accept that some issues raised are outside the scope of our complaint procedure
  • changes the basis of a complaint whilst an investigation is already underway or adds irrelevant information at a later stage
  • frequently raises irrelevant questions and insists they are all answered
  • makes excessive demands on the time and resources of staff with lengthy emails to more than one member of BABCP and / or expecting immediate responses
  • refuses to accept a final decision and continues to put forward points without any new evidence
  • submits repeat complaints with small variations, and insists these are new complaints

Summary

At BABCP, we are committed to providing high-quality services to our members and the public. However, we understand that things can go wrong, and we value all feedback received. Our Organisational Complaints Policy is designed to provide a clear and transparent process for raising concerns about our services, and to ensure that complaints are handled promptly, fairly, and efficiently.

We are committed to listening and learning from your feedback, and we will take all complaints seriously. Our Complaints team will be responsible for investigating complaints, and they will keep you informed throughout the process. We will also ensure that our complaints process is regularly reviewed and updated to ensure that it remains effective and efficient.

We hope that you never have reason to make a complaint, but if you do, we want to make sure that the process is as easy and straightforward as possible. If you have any questions about our Organisational Complaints Policy, please do not hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to provide you with any information or assistance that you may need.

0330 320 0851
babcp@babcp.com
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Imperial House, Hornby Street, Bury, Lancashire  BL9 5BN
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