Seeking continuous improvement
Part of a remedy may be to ensure that changes are made to policies, procedures, systems, staff training or all of these, to ensure that the maladministration or poor service is not repeated. It is important to ensure that lessons learnt are put into practice.
It is a false economy and poor administrative practice to deal with complaints only as they arise and to fail to correct the cause of the problem. Learning from complaints, and offering timely and effective remedies, gives the best outcome in terms of cost effectiveness and customer service – benefiting the service provider, the complainant and the taxpayer.
The public body should ensure that the complainant receives:
- an assurance that lessons have been learnt
- an explanation of changes made to prevent maladministration or poor service being repeated.
Quality of service is an important measure of the effectiveness of public bodies. Learning from complaints is a powerful way of helping to develop the public body and increasing trust among the people who use its services. So systems should exist to:
- record, analyse and report on the outcomes of complaints and remedies
- apply the information to improving customer service.