Complaint Standards Framework: Summary of core expectations

Promoting a learning and improvement culture

An effective complaint system demonstrates its commitment to promoting a just and learning culture that is open and accountable when mistakes occur. It uses learning to improve its services.

It makes sure every member of staff knows their role in promoting a ‘learning from  complaints’ culture. It puts in place clear ways to demonstrate how the organisation uses learning to improve.

  • All relevant staff know how they can deliver a just and learning culture in their role via specific objectives.  Staff can demonstrate meeting these objectives via practical examples.
  • Every organisation has appropriate governance structures in place to ensure that senior staff regularly review information arising from  complaints and are held accountable for ensuring the learning taken from feedback is acted upon to improve services.  
  • Organisations ensure staff are trained to identify  complaints in a manner that meets the expectations given in this Framework.
  • Organisations have clear processes in place to show how they capture learning from  complaints, report on it, and use it to improve services.  Organisations report on the feedback they have received and how they have used that feedback to improve their services. This information is easy to compare with that of other organisations.  
  • Organisations also publish the results of their success in meeting the expectations given in this Standards Framework by seeking feedback from those who raise  complaints (as well as staff involved) on their experience.  This shows how the organisation has performed towards meeting what users expect to see as described in  My expectations
  • Organisations provide meaningful opportunities for those who use their service (and national and local groups who represent those users) to discuss how the organisation has used learning from  complaints to improve local services.
  • Organisations routinely share learning from  complaints with other organisations (both locally and nationally) to build on insight and best practice.