Centric HR Complaints Procedure

Date first adopted  : 21 July 2021
Date of Next Review:   21 July 2022
Version  : 1
Responsible Body  : Managing Director
Responsible Officer  : Head of HR Operations and DPO

 

1. Definitions and Interpretation

1.1  In this Complaints Procedure the following expressions have the following meanings:

 “Business Day”
means, any day (other than Saturday or Sunday) on which ordinary banks are open for their full range of normal business in England;

“Complaint”
means a complaint about our services, about our customer service, or about our employees or Associates;

“Customer or Customers’ employee”
means a customer of ours  and includes potential customers (no purchase necessary) or employees of our Customers;

“Data Protection Policy”
means our data protection policy, available on request;

“Decision Letter”
means a letter informing a Customer or Customers’ employee of the outcome of their Complaint;

“Investigation Report”
means a report detailing the investigation of a Complaint, where this is deemed necessary;

“Recommendation”

means the recommended resolution to a Complaint made by the individual handling or investigating the Complaint; and]

“Resolution Action”
means the available actions to be taken in response to a Complaint as detailed in Section 6.

2.  What this Complaints Procedure Covers

2.1 This Complaints Procedure applies to Complaints pertaining to the provision of services by Centric HR Limited or our customer service and to our employees or Associates.

2.2 For the purposes of this Complaints Procedure, any reference to us, Centric HR Limited also includes our employees or our Associates.

2.3 Complaints may relate to any of our activities and may include (but not be limited to):

2.3.1 The quality of our customer service;
2.3.2 The behaviour and/or professional competence of our employees or Associates;
2.3.3 Delays, defects or other problems associated with the provision of services, e.g.  the poor presentation of data or incomprehensible report.;
2.3.4 Inadequate or incomplete HR advice.

2.4  The following do not constitute Complaints.  Customer or Customers’ employees’ raising such questions or matters should be directed to the appropriate person:

2.4.1      General questions about our services;
2.4.2      Matters concerning contractual, financial or other legal disputes;
2.4.3      Formal requests for the disclosure of information including, but not limited to, those made under the Data Protection Act;
2.4.4      Procedures directly relating to the Customer’s employment process which has its own internal complaint, grievance or appeals process.

 

3.   Receipt and Recording of Complaints

3.1 Customer or Customers’ employees may make Complaints using any of the following methods:

3.1.1      In writing, addressed to Sandra Berns, Managing Director at Centric HR Limited, Hawkesyard Hall, Armitage Lane, Rugeley, Staffs, WS15 1PU or via email to sandra@centrichr.co.uk;

3.2 Upon receipt of Complaints, the following steps shall be taken within 5 Business Days:

3.2.1 On receipt of a written Complaint, the complaint will be acknowledged and a copy of this procedure will be provided;
3.2.2 Centric HR Limited will decide the best course of action to investigate the complaint which could include one of the following:
3.2.2.1 Investigated internally by a member of staff or Associate
3.2.2.2 Investigated externally by an independent individual

4.  Complaint Information

4.1 Customers or employees of our Customers, are advised that the following information should be provided in as much detail as is reasonably possible when making a Complaint:

4.1.1 The Customer’s or Customers’ employee’s name, address, telephone number and email address, indicating any preferred method of communication;
4.1.2 If the Customer’s or Customers’ employee is being represented by a third party, the information set out in Section 4.1.1 should be provided in reference to both parties;
4.1.3 If the Complaint relates to a particular transaction, the detail of the transaction, interaction, Centric HR employee/Associate who was involved  and if relevant or available the invoice number;
4.1.4 Further details of the Complaint including, as appropriate, all times, dates, events, and people involved;
4.1.5 Details of any documents or other evidence on which the Customer or Customers’ employee wishes to rely in support of the Complaint;
4.1.6 Details of how the Customer or Customers’ employee would like Centric HR Limited to resolve the Complaint.  Whilst we undertake to make all reasonable efforts to accommodate such requests, however, we are not bound to take any action beyond that which we may be contractually or otherwise legally obliged to take.

4.2 If the information detailed in Section 4.1 is missing, insufficiently detailed, or incomplete, the Customer’s or Customers’ employee should be contacted within 10 Business Days, requesting further information.

4.3 If the complainant fails to provide the necessary information within 10 Business days after this request is sent, Centric HR Limited will deem the complaint withdrawn and the matter closed.

5. Complaints Handling

5.1 As a small business, the Managing Director or a nominated employee or individual will review the Complaint and shall provide a decision/outcome within 20 Business Days whether to:

5.1.1 Investigate the Complaint fully if it is considered to be valid, in which case the procedure should resume from Section 5.3; or
5.1.2 Dismiss the Complaint if it is considered to be invalid, in which case the Customer shall be informed of the decision in writing within 20 Business Days.

5.2 Subject to delays arising from circumstances beyond the reasonable control of the staff member handling the Complaint (including, but not limited to, delays in other persons responding to communications), Complaints shall be fully investigated and decided upon or a Recommendation made within 20 Business Days from the date of receipt or 20 Business Days from the date any further information was provided.

5.3 If the Complaint relates to (a) particular employee(s) or Associate (s) (a “Complainee” or “Complainees”), the Complainee(s) in question shall be informed of the Complaint and meetings and/or telephone calls shall be arranged as required to discuss the Complaint.  In such cases, the Complainee(s) should not, under any circumstances, contact the Customer or the Customers’ employee directly regarding the Complaint.  If the Customer contacts the Complainee(s) directly regarding the Complaint (which they are requested not to do in our Complaints procedure), the Complainee(s) should respectfully refuse to discuss the matter, referring the Customer or the Customers’ employee to the individual dealing with the Complaint.  Any such contact should be reported to the staff member handling the Complaint.

5.4 If additional information or evidence in support of the Complaint is required, the Customer or the Customers’ employee shall be contacted using the Customer or Customers’ employee’s preferred method of communication, stating clearly what information or evidence is required.  Customer or Customers’ employees should be respectfully reminded that any delay in their response to such a request may delay the resolution of their Complaint.

5.5 If a Customer or Customers’ employee is unable or unwilling to provide information or evidence requested, reasonable endeavours shall nevertheless be used to resolve the Complaint.  If, however, it is not possible to uphold the Complaint in the absence of the requested information or evidence, the Complaint may be closed and the Customer or Customers’ employee informed of the outcome.

5.6 The Complaint shall be examined and evaluated, taking full account of all relevant statements, information, evidence and circumstances.  Full objectivity and fairness shall be maintained at all times.

5.7 During the investigation of the Complaint, all records, information, employees and Associates that may be necessary to enable an impartial and thorough investigation shall be made available.

5.8 Following examination of the Complaint, a decision shall be reached within the time period specified (subject to the exceptions noted therein).

5.9 If the matter is investigated internally or externally by an employee other than the Managing Director or an independent individual,  the investigation, any reports and recommendations shall be reviewed by Sandra Berns, Managing Director before the Customer or Customers’ employee may be informed of the outcome.

5.10 In the event that Sandra Berns, Managing Director does not agree with the decision and/or Recommendation she shall give reasons for such disagreement and the decision and/or Recommendation shall be reconsidered by the staff member/independent individual responsible for investigating the Complaint.  If, following resubmission to she still does not agree with the Decision and/or Recommendation, Sandra Berns, Managing Director’s preferred decision and/or Recommendation shall be final.

5.11 Once a final decision is made, a Decision Letter shall be sent to the Customer or the Customers’ employee by first class post or by email, as appropriate.  Decision Letters shall set out the decision and the Resolution Action(s).

5.12 If a delay either occurs or is considered likely to occur at any stage of this procedure, the Customer or Customers’ employee should be informed using his or her preferred communication method.  The Customer or Customers’ employee should be informed of the length or likely length of the delay and the reasons.

6.  Resolution Actions

The managing Director will ultimately decide the appropriate resolution action once the complaint has been fully investigated.

7.  Implementation of Resolution Actions

Upon the conclusion of a Complaint, the Resolution Action(s) settled upon shall require implementation in a timely manner.  Responsibility for the implementation of Resolution Actions ultimately lies with the Managing Director.

8. Recording of Resolution Actions

8.1 Upon the conclusion of a Complaint and the implementation of the applicable resolutions all documentation collated as a result of the investigation into the Complaint will be stored on secure file for the period of the Contract with the Customer and then for six years following this.

9. Confidentiality and Data Protection

9.1 All Complaints, evidence and other information gathered, held and processed under this Complaints Handling Procedure shall be treated with the utmost confidence at all times.  Such information may be shared with employees, Associates of Centric HR Limited only to the extent required to resolve the Complaint in question in accordance with this Complaints Procedure.

9.2 In the event that the details of a Complaint are to be used for training or quality improvement purposes, in which case they may be shared with other employees Associates of Centric HR Limited beyond the scope of this Complaints Procedure, Personal details (that is, anything that may be used to identify the Customer or the Customers’ employee) shall be removed from all information so used.

9.3 All personal information collected by us (including, but not limited to, Customer or Customers’ employees’ names and contact details) shall only be collected, used and held in accordance with the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998 and our Customer or Customers’ employees’ rights under that Act, as detailed and embodied in our Data Protection Policy.

10. Procedure Review and Responsibility

10.1 Overall responsibility for this Complaints Procedure and the implementation thereof lies with Sandra Berns, Managing Director.

10.2 This Complaints Procedure shall be reviewed annually and adjusted where relevant information changes.