Complaints and Appeals Policy and Procedure
Train Together Limited is committed to providing the best possible service to its learners and employers ensuring they trust us to meet their needs.
Both negative and positive feedback is recognised as a valuable resource to enable us to improve the quality of our services and develop ongoing relationships. We strive to provide the highest quality service and to be responsive to concerns or complaints raised by any of our learners or employers.
In order that Train Together Limited can learn and improve on feedback given, accurate and complete records of all complaints received will be maintained. A report on complaints received and their outcomes will be submitted to the Director of Quality and Compliance on a monthly basis. Complaints relating to issues with a direct impact on learner and employer experience will be passed to the Head of Delivery for consideration to help to improve customer service throughout the business. Effectiveness of the complaint’s procedure will be evaluated on an annual basis by the Continuous Quality Improvement Manager.
The purpose of this complaints and appeals procedure is to enable anyone interacting with Train Together Limited to raise matters of concern to our attention, so that these can be investigated and resolved in the clearest and fairest way possible. In most cases this will be achieved without having to conduct the formal complaints or appeals procedure which should be seen as a last resort in reaching a solution.
Section 1- Introduction – What is a complaint?
The complaints procedure covers any expression of dissatisfaction or concern about:
- Provisions of Train Together Limited affecting our learners and employers
- Actions or lack of actions by Train Together Limited or its staff
- Standards of service, courses or facilities provided by Train Together Limited
The procedure does not cover the following:
- Matters covered by separate policies or procedures, including Appeals Procedure, Equal Opportunities, Grievance procedure, Malpractice & Maladministration procedure.
- Judgement about individual learner performance or awarding/end point organisation assessment decisions
- Requests for new services or provision
This procedure is for use by any existing or prospective learner or employer who seeks or receives a service from us. It also extends to anyone who may be directly affected by our services or activities. Anonymous complaints will be logged and monitored but not investigated under normal circumstances.
During the complaints procedure, we will also review any systems relevant to the complaint, to identify and recommend changes that would prevent a recurrence of similar complaints (preventative action). These recommendations will be included within the Action and Tracking Form.
It may also be necessary to take advice from other internal and external agencies, as appropriate, in investigating the complaint.
It may be necessary to require access to sensitive personal data (under the Data Protection Act) to arrive at a sound conclusion. The information will be handled with due regard to its sensitivity, and only shared with others who need to know it as part of the investigation. The complainant submitting a formal complaint should be aware that the information will be made available under these conditions as part of an investigation.
Section 2 – Raising a complaint informally – Stage 1
The complaint should be resolved early and quickly, preferably keeping it as close to the source of the problem as possible and dealing with it by informal means. By encouraging complainants to come forward with concerns at an early stage, matters can be discussed, and any misunderstandings resolved by telephone conversation, face to face meetings, email or letter to the appropriate person.
Informal complaints will be responded to by the appropriate person (in most cases this will be the Trainer Coach/Account Manager) within 10 working days’ receipt of the complaint
Section 3 – Raising a complaint formally – Stage 2
Train Together Limited recognises that informal mechanisms may not resolve all problems and that some problems may be too serious or sensitive to be dealt with by raising the issue directly with the member of staff involved. In these circumstances, the formal complaints procedure should be used.
- A formal complaint should be submitted to email@example.com or in writing marked for the attention of the Continuous Quality and Improvement Manager
- The statement of complaint should be as thorough and complete as possible and include any supporting documentation
- The Continuous Quality Improvement Manager will acknowledge receipt of the complaint in writing within 48 hours
- The complaint will be investigated within 28 working days of receipt and the findings recorded
- The complainant will receive confirmation of the outcome of investigation
If the complainant is not satisfied with the response received in Stage 2, the complaint may be taken to Stage 3 of the procedure.
All complaints will be acknowledged and investigated to establish facts and evidence to support the complaint and if a complaint is considered justified, remedial action will then be taken.
Section 4 – Appeal against a complaint decision – Stage 3
A copy of the complaint (with any supporting evidence) should be sent to the Director of Quality and Compliance within 14 days of receiving the Stage 2 response. The Director of Quality and Compliance will hear the complaint and review the evidence. The Director of Quality and Compliance will investigate the complaint, including all documentary evidence.
The Director of Quality and Compliance may seek to resolve the complaint based on the documentary evidence alone.
Following investigation, a written response will be produced detailing whether the complaint is upheld or not and detailing action(s) necessary to resolve the issue.
The decision of the Director of Quality and Compliance is final.
Section 5 – What is an appeal against an assessment decision?
If a learner is dissatisfied with an assessment decision made by a Trainer Coach or the Quality Assurance process they have the right of appeal. The main reason for an appeal is likely to be:
- The learner does not understand why the assessment decision has been made because of lack of, or unclear feedback from the Trainer Coach/Quality Assurer.
- The learner believes the Trainer Coach/Quality Assurer has missed, misjudged, or misinterpreted some of the evidence put forward for assessment.
Section 6 – Appeal against an assessment decision – Informal – Stage 1
The learner appeals directly to the Trainer Coach/Quality Assurer by completing the Learner Appeal Form. The Trainer Coach/Quality Assurer will acknowledge receipt within 3 working days and will provide written feedback/a decision in writing within 10 working days.
Where the learner does not agree with the assessment, the learner should advise the Trainer Coach/Quality Assurer in the first instance, indicating the points of disagreement with reasons and reference to the evidence in the portfolio.
Section 7 – Appeal against an assessment decision – Formal – Stage 2
If the learner is not satisfied with the feedback received and decision made in Stage 1, they can proceed to Stage 2 by appealing to the Continuous Quality Improvement Manager. All learner appeals will be acknowledged and investigated to establish facts and evidence to support the appeal and if an appeal is considered justified, remedial action will then be taken. The Continuous Quality Improvement Manager will discuss the complaint with the Director of Quality and Compliance who will respond within 10 working days of receiving the learner’s appeal.
Section 8 – Appeal against an assessment decision – Appeal – Stage 3
Learners who have exhausted Stages 1 and 2 and are still not satisfied with the decision may proceed to Stage 3. This appeal must be in writing to the Awarding Body/End Point Assessment Organisation or the Education & Skills Funding Agency and must be accompanied by copies of all documentation used in Stages 1 and 2.
The decision made by the Awarding Body/End Point Assessment Organisation or the Education and Skills Funding Agency will be final.
This policy was last reviewed on 9th December 2021.