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Spotlight on Housing and Adult Social Care Complaints and Customer Feedback

Councillors will hear details of complaints received by the Council about Housing and Adult Social Care over the last financial year at Perth & Kinross Council's next Housing and Communities Committee meeting on Wednesday 16 May.

Information on the number of Stage 1 and Stage 2 complaints will also be presented as well as examples of feedback from customer satisfaction surveys. Elected members will also receive an overview of the actions taken to improve services as a result of customer feedback. 

Formal procedure

The Council has a responsibility to have a formal procedure in place for receiving complaints by or on behalf of service users. The Government expects local authorities to produce annual reports on the complaints investigated and the outcomes of these. This is the first year that Social Work complaints have been subject to the same process as all other complaints received by Councils as a result of the introduction of the new complaints Handling Procedure for Social Work in April 2017. 

This procedure brings Social Work more in line with the procedure used across the rest of the Council and will be included in the Council's Annual Complaints Performance Report. In addition, changes are being made to align NHS and social work complaints to support services and make improvements within Perth and Kinross Health and Social Care Partnership.

Robust recording

In the last financial year the number of complaints made to Perth & Kinross Council about Social Work Services has increased significantly. This is a result of more robust recording rather than any decrease in the quality of the services provided by the Council. In comparison, the number of complaints about non Social Work Services has remained static over the same period.    

Improvement actions

Improvement actions include training and support from Legal services on Power of Attorney documents together with the scanning of all relevant documents onto a client index system. Ongoing customer care training is also being provided to frontline staff together with the closer monitoring of response timescales.    

Councillor Peter Barrett, Convener of the Housing and Communities Committee commented: "Perth & Kinross Council is committed to handling complaints effectively as this is a very important part of providing good customer care. Listening to the views of our service users and stakeholders enables us to improve services.

"As part of the improvement process the findings of complaints are shared with the relevant managers and across management teams to address any specific or cross-Service issues, recommendations or improvement actions."