1. Policy Statement
The Club welcomes comments and complaints from all members of the Club community and from the general public. We use this process to improve our services for stakeholders, fans and the wider community in which we exist.
Port Vale FC is committed to the continuous improvement of the services it provides. We recognise that, occasionally, mistakes will be made or the service offered will not meet as individual’s requirements or expectations. For these reasons it is Club policy that all complaints should be:
1.1 Treated seriously and in an open manner
1.2 Acknowledged immediately, preferably in writing
1.4 Resolved, wherever that is reasonably practicable, within no longer than 13 working weeks
1.5 Used as feedback to improve the service which the Club offers
No complainant brining a complaint under this procedure will be treated less favourably by any member of staff. If there is evidence to the contrary, the member of staff may be subject to disciplinary proceedings.
The policy applies to all members of the Club community but does not replace procedures for, staff grievances and disciplinary action: those procedures should be used where appropriate.
The Human Rights Act 1998 applies to the operation of this policy.
4.1 All Club Staff have a responsibility for receiving complaints, treating them seriously and dealing with them promptly and courteously in accordance with the procedure set out below.
4.2 Senior Managers have a responsibility for resolving a complaint, and leading or contributing to an investigation into a complaint when this is considered appropriate.
4.3 The Chief Executive is responsible for resolving complaints which have not been resolved during the previous two stages. The decision made by the Chief Executive is final.
4.4 The Governing Board is responsible for ensuring that the complaints policy and procedure are operating effectively and may become directly involved if a complaint is directed against the Chief Executive or members of the governing body.
5. Actions to Implement and Develop Policy
5.1. Stage One
The Club expects complaints to be made informally to a member of staff in the first instance. Where this is not possible or does not result in satisfactory resolution, the complaint should be submitted in writing to the relevant club manager.
The Club usually expects complaints to be made by the person concerned. However it will consider complaints made by a parent or advocate.
Anonymous complaints cannot be investigated.
All comments/complaints will be forwarded to Port Vale FC who will acknowledge receipt within one working week. The Club will then forward to the relevant Club manager.
5.2. Stage two
The relevant Club manager will respond in writing within one working week, explaining what has happened as a result of the complaint. Where this involves a member of staff, specific detail of action taken will not be made available. This is to ensure that our employees are afforded appropriate dignity at work.
If the complaint requires further investigation that cannot be carried out within the week, the manager shall keep the complainant informed and specify a date when a response can be given.
5.3. Stage three
If the complainant is dissatisfied with the relevant manager’s response then the complaint will be forwarded to a member of the Club Senior Management resolve.
The senior manager will acknowledge receipt of the complaint within two working weeks and a final reply will be completed within 8 working weeks to allow time for any formal investigations to take place.
5.4. Stage four (final internal College stage)
If the complainant is still dissatisfied with the response then the matter will be referred to the Chief Executive. The Chief Executive will respond within three weeks. The Chief Executive’s decision is final.
The total comments/complaints procedure should be finalised in no more than 13 working weeks unless there are exceptional circumstances in which case the complainant will be kept informed of progress.
5.5. Complaints against the Chief Executive or Members of the Governing Body
Complaints against the Chief Executive should be addressed to the Chair of the Club.
6. Monitoring & Evaluation
6.1. The Club will maintain a confidential record of complaints dealt with to feed into quality improvement processes. The Club will maintain a record of all complaints, appeals and outcomes and produce an annual report for analysis by the Board.