IQ Verify welcome any comments, suggestions, compliments, feedback or complaints about the service you have experienced when contacting us or when using any of our services or certified clients. Our employees are here to help ensure your experience with us remains as positive as possible. However, if you do not feel satisfied with our service, or the service you received at one of our learning providers, please contact us in line with this policy.
IQ Verify aim to ensure that we:
Examples of situation that would constitute a complaint:
Please submit your complaint and any relevant evidence to email@example.com or provide it by post to: Business Improvement Team, IQ Verify Ltd, PO Box 7616, Kidderminster, DY11 9HR.
As well as the nature of your complaint, please ensure you include:
On receipt of a formal complaint, IQ Verify shall:
If the complaint relates to:
In the instance of IQ Verify receiving a compliant about a certified client, to ensure impartiality of assessment the complaint will be escalated through the below described stages of review and decision making:
- The complaint investigation will commence with the Operations Manager of IQ Verify who will allocate the case to a designated member of the company whose interests are not conflicted.
- Should the complaint be upheld it will be escalated to the IQ Verify impartiality committee (an external voluntary committee of independent subject matter experts whose knowledge and competence align with IQ Verify’s scope of accreditation) for consideration.
- The outcome of the impartiality committee will be implemented by IQ Verify and appropriate actions taken.
- Should the impartiality committee determine further escalation is required, the complaint will be sent to an appropriate external body for further review (e.g. The Courts, Police, ICO etc).
In all instances, IQ Verify will determine, together with the client and the complainant, whether and, if so to what extent, the subject of the complaint and its resolution will be made public. A complaint form may also be raised by personnel within the IQ Verify where it is noted that the service provided does not meet the client’s expectation, the investigative process for such instances will be the same.
Conflicts of Interest
Where any person responsible for tasks outlined within this policy is considered to be in conflict (having provided consultancy for a client, or been employed by a client within the last two years) an appropriate nominee will be appointed by agreement of at least 2 members from the Senior Management Team to undertake the tasks ordinarily assigned to the role within this policy.
The decision resolving the complaint or appeal shall be made by, or reviewed and approved by, person(s) not involved in the certification activities, or other aspects of service, related to the complaint or appeal.
You should receive a response within 20 working days of receipt of the complaint. Where this is not possible within the timeframe, correspondence providing details for the reason for the delay will be sent.
Our response will usually include an explanation of the situation that has led to your outcome, and any corrective action taken.
We aim to improve our business processes and our response to clients in the light of learning from the feedback we receive. The outcome of the complaint will be reported and reviewed at Management review meetings to identify root causes and trends.
If you are not satisfied with the outcome or progress of your complaint, you can take the matter further by asking for the complaint to be escalated to the appropriate manager who will evaluate all the information and ensure the correct process has been carried out.
Complaining to our Regulators
If you remain unsatisfied with the outcome after escalating your complaint you can contact the appropriate regulator providing evidence that you have instigated IQ Verify’s complaints procedure in the first instance:
Process Improvement & Customer Feedback Manager
UKAS, 2 Pine Trees, Chertsey Lane, Staines-upon-Thames, Middlesex, TW18 3HR
Tel: +44 (0)1784 429000 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
If a client wishes to appeal against any decision for whatever reason including suspension or withdrawal of a certificate, the client will begin the appeals procedure of which there are three stages. For all three stages appeals must be made to the IQ Verify Enquiries and Appeals team, within 30 working days of having been served with a decision. Appeals must be outlined on the appeal form and must be accompanied by all relevant supporting evidence.
IQ Verify is responsible for all decisions at all levels of the appeals-handling process. All persons engaged in the appeals-handling process / appeal panel are different from those who carried out the audits and made the certification decisions.
To ensure that there is no conflict of interest, personnel who have provided consultancy for the client, or been employed by the client, shall not be used by IQ Verify within the appeals process for that client within two years following the end of the consultancy or employment.
STAGE ONE – Report and decision reviewed
Audit report will be re-examined by a different decision maker from the one that made the first decision. Justifications not to certificate will be reviewed by the Appeals panel to ascertain whether further investigations or audits are necessary.
STAGE TWO – Impartiality Committee Review
If the client is not satisfied with the result of Stage one review, Stage two requires a full IQ Verify Impartiality Committee review. The process will focus on whether IQ Verify appropriately used the correct procedures in arriving at its decision.
All appeal decisions will be ratified by the IQ Verify Appeals panel.
If at the end of ANY of the two Stages IQ Verify find the decision to be correct it will set out its reasons in writing with supporting evidence.
If at the end of ANY of the two Stages IQ Verify the decision is proved to be incorrect, IQ Verify will revise and re-issue the report and, if necessary, appropriate certification.
If other audit or certification decisions might be affected by the result of such an appeal, all similar results will be recalled and reviewed in the same way.
IQ Verify will give formal notice to the client of the end of the appeals-handling process.
IQ Verify operates an appeals process to allow the learning providers and candidates to challenge results and decisions issued by IQ Verify and to ensure that they are fair, consistent and based on valid judgements. IQ Verify will aim to resolve arising issues and enquiries efficiently as a matter of normal day to day contact prior to any formal application of its Enquiry about Results (EAR) policy or this Appeals process where practicable. However, learning providers and candidates can submit a formal EAR or Appeal in line with the applicable policy when they feel they are unable to make progress with the issue with their current point of contact.
The appeals policy applies but is not limited to:
The appeals policy does not cover:
In those cases, a review of IQ Verify’s decision may be requested and undertaken at the discretion of IQ Verify, or the learning provider may be advised to submit a fresh application for learning provider approval.
Stages of Appeals
Wherever possible, IQ Verify aim to provide written confirmation of the decision arising from the above processes in the timelines indicated above. In some circumstances, the timeline quoted within this policy may not be practicable, e.g. when IQ Verify is required to audit the learning provider but key learning provider staff are not available for this visit. IQ Verify will advise of the likely extent of any delay and estimated revised date where this is the case.
NB: All fees quoted exclude VAT. Payment in advance is required prior to the undertaking of any review or appeals. Fees are refunded if the enquiry or appeal is successful and results in a positive change to the outcome or results awarded.
How to apply for an Appeal Complete the Appeals Form (found in downloads), completing the sections required depending on the type of your appeal and enclosing as much supporting information as possible.Where possible, appeals related to a candidate’s result should be requested through the learning provider. Learning providers must:
A candidate may also apply directly to IQV. We will require proof of identity and the reason for a direct application if candidates intend to contact IQV directly. Appellants must include:
IQ Verify will acknowledge receipt of the appeal and carry out an initial assessment of the information / evidence required to deal with the appeal as well as a check on the accuracy of records held. If the application form does not include the required information, it will be returned to the appellant, with details of what information is missing. An extended deadline of 15 working days will normally be given for this information to be provided to IQ Verify.
Once in receipt of all required information, IQV will confirm progression of the appeal.
Further steps relevant to Independent AppealsIn the case of the independent appeals stage, IQV will also provide the appellant with an opportunity to raise concern over the identity of the independent reviewer. Upon confirmation, the relevant fee required to complete the appeal must be sent to IQV.
Once the appellant has agreed that IQV have provided a confirmation that an independent review is proceeding, further correspondence or communication regarding the appeal will not normally be considered, or may detrimentally impact on the timescales of the appeal. The Independent Reviewer will review all evidence which took place in the preceding stages and review if IQV has applied its procedures or policies fairly, appropriately and consistently in arriving at judgements. The independent reviewer will also take into account the results of previous similar appeals.
Failure to address IQV’s information requests or provide payment may result in IQV declining to take forward the appeal at all, or until such time those issues are addressed.
Outcome of Reviews / Appeals related to Special Considerations , Reasonable Adjustments, risks or sanctionA review or appeal may result in:
In all cases, IQV will provide a statement of outcome which will be sent to the applicant, or the applicant’s representative at the learning provider. IQV will include the supporting evidence unless it is not practicable to do so (e.g. if disclosure would be in contravention of IQV’s Whistle Blowers Policy).
Where the original decision is overturned in the appellant’s favour, IQV will also refund the applicable fee paid. If it is identified that the outcome may affect other candidates then the IQV employs responsible for notifying the appellant of the decision will also request that an investigation is launched to identify any candidates potentially affected and identify root causes. The outcome would then be continued through the IQV Investigation Policy & Procedure.
Outcomes of Independent Review
An independent review may result in:
The decisions and outcomes arrived by the independent review is final. Where the independent review overturns the original decision, it may also recommend further action to be taken by IQV.Where the original decision is overturned in the appellant’s favour, IQV will also refund the applicable fee paid.
Monitoring and Evaluation of Appeals
As part of annual reports to the IQV Board, the MD will produce a statistical analysis of timescales taken, the number of decisions upheld, or overturned in the appellant’s favour, and summary of the results of all appeals, enquiries and complaints. IQV will publish these statistics annually.
Where appropriate, the report will summarise recommendations and revisions to any policies and procedures required as a result of this analysis