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A Practical Approach to Alternative Dispute Resolution

A Practical Approach to Alternative Dispute Resolution (5th edn)

Susan Blake, Julie Browne, and Stuart Sime
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date: 19 May 2024

p. 35221. Complaints, Grievances, and Ombudsmenlocked

p. 35221. Complaints, Grievances, and Ombudsmenlocked

  • Susan Blake, Susan BlakeProfessor, Barrister and Associate Dean of Education, The City Law School, City, University of Londona
  • Julie BrowneJulie BrowneAssociate Professor, Barrister and Deputy Course Director of the BPTC, The City Law School, City, University of London
  •  and Stuart SimeStuart SimeProfessor, Barrister and Course Director of the BPTC, The City Law School, City, University of London

Abstract

This chapter addresses complaints, grievances, and ombudsman schemes, which are designed to provide effective and speedy relief where problems arise between a customer and an organization. It has become increasingly common for government agencies, companies, and organizations to have internal complaints and grievance procedures to look into and respond to any problems raised by their customers of a formal nature. It is seen to be good for customer relations for problems to be investigated by someone within the organization and for the problem to be resolved with the customer quickly and before it escalates into a contentious dispute. Efficient and effective complaints and grievance procedures also form part of an organization's quality control or quality assurance procedures, which are aimed at ensuring that high levels of service are maintained, with any weaknesses being addressed swiftly before other customers are affected by similar problems. Meanwhile, ombudsmen act like umpires in complaints brought against public or private organizations.

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