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Nobody is perfect - concerns and complaints...but we will try to put it right.

Sometimes we can get things wrong. We have a Complaints Policy to make it easier for you to bring a concern or complaint to our attention. The Policy also makes sure we respond in the right way and learn from your concerns or complaints.

This information is also included in our Customer Complaints Leaflet (opens in new window, PDF, 6MB)

What is a concern?

You might not want to go through the formal complaints process, but you might instead have a concern or an issue that you would like to raise with us so we can learn from it.

Why complain?

We will always try to deliver a good quality service, but if you’re not happy with our response, the service we have provided, or our efforts to resolve your query, you can ask us to log a complaint or you can raise this with us as a concern.

What is a complaint?

You may feel that we did not do what we promised, or maybe you’re unhappy with the way you were treated.

Examples of complaints are:

  • The level of service we provided.
  • The length of time taken to provide the service or information you need.
  • Our failure to keep you informed of a decision we made.
  • The attitude or behaviour of our staff or contractors.

Who can complain?

Anyone who uses, or receives, a service from Alpha can complain.

How do I complain?

  • Fill in a complaints form at the back of our Customer Complaints leaflet, or
  • Telephone us, or
  • Write to us, or
  • Email us, or
  • Speak to a member of Alpha staff face-to-face, or
  • Visit the Contact Us page on our website for other ways to get in touch.

Please let us know if you need help to make a complaint. We can organise interpreting services, Braille and signing facilities. We will acknowledge all complaints within 2 working days.

We aim to respond to all formal complaints within 10 working days. If we need more time to carry out an investigation, or to gather more information, we will let you know.

What is not covered by the Complaints Policy?

Some types of requests are not covered by the Complaints Policy. For example, we have special procedures to deal with nuisance and harassment and reporting antisocial behaviour.

If your complaint is about something that cannot be resolved by the Complaints Policy we will explain why and make sure the right team is dealing with it.

If your complaint is about a service failure that happened more than 6 months ago, we will not be able to investigate it.

How we handle your complaint - what happens next

There are various stages in the complaints process.

Stage 0 - Get it right now

You might just want to report a concern, and not go through a complaints process. We record concerns and learn from them in the same way as a complaint.

If we can’t sort out your concern to your satisfaction, you will be given the option to make a formal complaint, or if the concern requires a full investigation and response, we will let you know that we are dealing with this as a formal complaint.

Most of the time, you might simply want us to put things right and for us to focus on sorting out the problem quickly. If you express a complaint, we try (where possible) to resolve it within 2 working days. It may be possible to resolve your complaint immediately at the time you report it. If we cannot resolve your complaint to your satisfaction it will move to the next stage.

Stage 1 - Senior Manager review of your complaint

A Senior Manager responsible for the service you have complained about will investigate and respond to you within 10 working days.

Stage 2 - Independent review of the decision of the Senior Manager

If we’re not able to resolve your complaint we will arrange for a Board Member and the Chief Executive to review how we’ve handled it. This is an opportunity for you to discuss the issues with someone who is independent from the service.

How we aim to put things right following your complaint

We will always aim to put things right if we have got something wrong.

We will:

  • Say sorry.
  • Provide an explanation or more information.
  • Inform you of the outcome of our investigation and aim to involve you in the decision on our intended actions.
  • Put in place any actions to sort out the issue.
  • Let you know what we have learnt from this, so we do not make the mistake again.
  • Record concerns and complaints and lessons learned to improve services and include this information in our Annual Report to residents.
  • Arrange training or guidance for staff.
How we aim to put things right following your complaint

Taking it further

The Independent Housing Ombudsman is set up by law to look at complaints about Housing Associations. The service is free and impartial. The Ombudsman will normally expect you to have fully completed the process in Alpha’s complaints procedure prior to referring the case for their support.

You can contact the Housing Ombudsman Service at:

Address: PO Box 152, Liverpool, L33 7WQ

Tel: 0300 111 3000

Email: info@housing-ombudsman.org.uk

www.housing-ombudsman.org.uk

Concerns and Complaints Form

If you have a concern or complaint, please complete and return the form at the end of our Customer Complaints Leaflet (opens in new window, PDF, 6MB)