Version- 9

Issue date - June 2024

Review date - June 2027

Board approval - Yes

Author - Cressida Stanley-Williams, Strategic Operations Manager

Policy owner - Pam Mastrantonio, Managing Director for Retirement Living and Kris Peach, Managing Director for Extra Care

Policy Steering Group approval date - May 2024

PDF version here


We aim to provide high quality services and welcome all feedback, both positive and negative. We will ensure that compliments are passed on to employees and their line manager to both celebrate and identify areas of good practice.

Should we fail to meet the standards we set, or expectations around our services, this policy sets out how we will seek to respond and remedy issues raised to us. We recognise that early and local resolution of complaints is key to effective complaint handling. Complaints are an opportunity to learn and to improve our service provision across Housing 21, whilst developing good practice for employees through the provision of ongoing learning and development.

We apply a clear, simple and accessible two-stage policy around complaints to ensure they are resolved promptly and fairly for residents in a way that also meets the requirements of the Housing Ombudsman’s Complaint Handling Code.

Our definition of a formal complaint is as set out by the Housing Ombudsman Complaints Handling Code (2024):

“An expression of dissatisfaction, however made, about the standard of service, actions or lack of action by the organisation, its own employee, or those acting on its behalf, affecting an individual resident or group of residents”.

Our Resident Complaint Panel, who provide scrutiny across all areas of complaint handling, feel a complaint is something that has affected a resident’s peaceful enjoyment of living on their scheme, which Housing 21 have not dealt with very well, and is in line with the Housing Ombudsman definition.

This policy and separate employee management guidance set out clear direction on:

  • How to deal with compliments, service requests and formal complaints received from and on behalf of our residents, tenants, leaseholders and clients or someone acting on their behalf.
  • How formal complaints should be recorded, managed and concluded.
  • How to manage any persistent complainants fairly and consistently.

Our event reporting system (ERICA) is used to record and monitor various processes. This includes recording compliments and formal complaints; and providing a structured approach to implement improvements to services as a result of customer feedback.

This policy applies to all current and former Housing 21 residents, tenants, and leaseholders, or a third party or representative, acting on their behalf (with consent) where the issue has arisen within the last 12 months; and all employees responsible for handling complaints and compliments.

Housing 21 employees should refer to the management guidance for detailed guidance and procedures.

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