We welcome your feedback and if we are doing something well please tell us about it and likewise if we are not.
We regularly monitor all feedback we receive and deal with our customer feedback, complaints and compliments under our customer feedback policy (PDF File, 769kb).
The Council recognises the importance of listening to the views of its residents about the services they receive from us. Our customer feedback policy provides the opportunity to capture, investigate, respond and learn from customer feedback to assist with the delivery and shaping of Council services in the future.
You can leave us feedback online, by letter, telephone, email, on social media or in person.
It is appreciated when a customer takes the time to thank or praise the Council or staff for the service they have received. Compliments provide an opportunity for the Council to learn from feedback and gives insight into the drivers of customer satisfaction.
A compliment is defined as “an indication that we have performed well, provided a good service or gone beyond expectations.”
Comments and suggestions
Comments and suggestions are welcomed as valuable sources of information as to how the Council could improve the service it delivers. It may not always be possible to implement or make changes as a result of a customer’s comment or suggestion but they are still important as the feedback might influence decisions that the Council makes in the future.
A suggestion is defined as “an idea of how we could improve or change the current service offered.”
Complaints provide an opportunity for the Council to learn from feedback and gives insight into the drivers of customer satisfaction. The Council uses complaints to review the services it delivers.
A complaint is defined as “an expression of dissatisfaction, however made, about the standard of service, actions or lack of action by the organisation, its own staff, or those acting on its behalf, affecting an individual resident or group of residents.”
In the unlikely event that you feel that Newark and Sherwood District Council has not dealt with your comments satisfactorily, please contact us and a full review by a senior officer will be arranged. If you then remain unsatisfied, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman or Housing Ombudsman may be able to help you.
Complaints will not usually be accepted where the event giving rise to the complaint occurred more than six months ago. This is because a significant lapse of time makes a thorough and meaningful investigation more challenging.
There are two stages to the handling of a complaint:
- The customer services team will send an acknowledgement of receipt of your complaint within 3 working days.
- A senior officer will conduct a thorough investigation of your complaint and provide a response directly to you within 10 working days.
- Where it is not possible to respond within these times, we will contact you and advise you of an estimated date of response, which will not exceed a further 10 working days without good reason.
- If you are not happy with your Stage 1 response, you can request it progresses to Stage 2.
- This request must be received by the Council within three months of the Stage 1 response being sent.
- Your complaint will be referred to a director or a business manager who was not involved in Stage 1 of the complaint.
- They will be given all the complaint information and will conduct a thorough review of the investigation and the response provided to you at Stage 1.
- They will write to you with the outcome of their investigation within 15 working days.
- Where it is not possible to respond within this time, we will contact you and advise you of an estimated date of response, which will not exceed a further 10 working days without good reason.
Optional for Council tenants: If the complaint escalates to Stage 2 and is from a tenant in a Council property and/or it relates to a Council tenancy, the tenant can choose to request a tenant representative (a member of the Housing Advisory Group or from our wider cohort of involved tenants) to be involved with the review. This will allow for an objective tenant perspective to be gained when looking for a resolution to the complaint. A visit to the complainant by the tenant with the lead officer will be encouraged as part of this overview. This will be done within the existing time frames as detailed above
If after receiving the Stage 2 response, the complainant is still unhappy with the outcome, they can refer it to the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman or Housing Ombudsman.
Referral to Ombudsman
In most circumstances the Ombudsman will expect the complainant to have followed the Council’s complaint process. However it is acknowledged that in some very rare cases, there is nothing to be gained from progressing with both stages. In these situations the Ombudsman may be prepared to consider complaints without both stages being completed.
You can contact the Ombudsman directly or you can ask your local councillor to do this for you.
Local Government Ombudsman
The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman is an independent person who investigates allegations of maladministration causing injustice to the person who has complained.
More information on how to make a complaint or how to contact the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman is available on its website.
The Housing Ombudsman service is set up by law to look at complaints about housing organisations.
The Housing Ombudsman resolves disputes involving the tenants and leaseholders of social landlords (housing associations and local authorities) and its voluntary members (private landlords and letting agents who are committed to good service for their tenants).
More information on how to contact the Housing Ombudsman is available on its website.
In July 2020 the Housing Ombudsman Service published a Complaint Handling Code and as part of this the Council was required to undertake a self-assessment by 31 December 2020.
The Complaint Handling Code provides a framework to promote high quality complaint management.
An in-house review has been completed, followed by consultation with our involved tenants: Housing Ombudsman Complaint Handling Code: Self Assessment (December 2020) (PDF File, 426kb)
Making a complaint against a councillor
You can read the Member code of conduct for further details on how to make a complaint against a Councillor.
If you have any complaints regarding the planning service, for example, how the service is provided or the conduct of an officer please provide your feedback as normal.
If you want to provide feedback relating to a planning decision or planning enforcement matter please follow our planning procedure.
Other ways to have your say
Feedback for Nottinghamshire County Council
Nottinghamshire County Council deals with complaints, comments or compliments about roads, potholes, pathways, gritting, street lighting and any other County Council service including libraries, social care and school admissions.