Complaints and Appeals Policy – Apprenticeships

1. Policy Statement:

Financial Services Training Partners (FSTP) is committed to providing quality service to its clients and working in an open and accountable way that builds the trust and respect of all our stakeholders. One way in which we can continue to improve our service is by listening and responding to the views of our stakeholders and customers, and in particular responding positively to complaints and by putting mistakes right.

Therefore, we aim to ensure that:

  • Making a complaint is as easy as possible.
  • We treat each complaint as a clear expression of dissatisfaction with our service, which calls for an immediate response.
  • We deal with complaints promptly, politely and (when appropriate) confidentially.
  • We respond to complaints in the right way – for example, with an explanation, with an apology where we have got things wrong or with information on an action taken etc.
  • We learn from complaints, use them to improve our service and review our complaints policy annually.
  • This procedure applies to all FSTP staff, associate training staff, apprentices, employers and training providers using FSTP’s Services.
  • Overall, we are committed to upholding our duty of care to our apprentices, employers and training providers who utilise our apprenticeship services.

2. What is a Complaint:

A complaint is declaration that you are dissatisfied with a service, process, product or individual.

When making a complaint there is an expectation that action will be taken to consider this and, if appropriate, resolve it.

A complaint can be made verbally or in writing.

3. Informal Complaints Procedure:

We recognise that many concerns will be raised informally and dealt with quickly. Our aims are to:

  • Resolve informal complaints quickly.
  • Enable mediation between the complainant and the individual to whom the complaint refers. An informal approach is appropriate when it can be achieved. But if concerns cannot be satisfactorily resolved informally, then the formal complaints procedure should be followed.

4. Formal Complaint Procedure:

  • As part of our regulatory requirements FSTP must publish our complaints procedures, which this document fulfils.
  • If you are unable to resolve the issue informally, you should write to us, provide the full details of your complaint and state the remedy that you are seeking. You can expect your complaint to be acknowledged within 48 hours and a full response to the complaint within 14 working days. You can find our contact details below.
  • FSTP will review the complaint and decide if this should be brought to the attention of the Apprenticeship Senior Management Team (ASMT) for them to investigate, report on and consider if the Institute for Apprenticeships should be notified.
  • FSTP’s aim is to resolve matters as quickly as possible, however inevitably some issues will be more complex and therefore may require longer to be fully investigated. Consequently, timescales given for handling and responding to complaints are indicative. If a request requires a more detailed investigation, you will receive an interim response describing what is being done to deal with the matter, when a full response can be expected and from whom.
  • In cases where we feel there could be an adverse effect that questions the integrity and quality of the apprenticeship service offered by FSTP, we will immediately escalate our concerns to the Institute for Apprenticeships and the ESFA.

5. Making a Complaint:

FSTP Quality and Compliance Manager – Lorraine Christmas

Email: lorrainechristmas@fstp.co.uk

Address: Acorn House, 393 Midsummer Boulevard, Milton Keynes, MK9 3HP.

Apprenticeship Helpline

Email: nationalhelpdesk@apprenticeships.gov.uk

Telephone: 0800 015 0400

6. Appealing a Complaint:

If you are dissatisfied with the way we have managed and addressed your complaint you can appeal the decision. To do this you should contact:

Apprenticeship Manager – Nicola Spennati

Email: nicolaspennati@fstp.co.uk

Address: Acorn House, 393 Midsummer Boulevard, Milton Keynes, MK9 3HP.

If you continue to be dissatisfied after you have exhausted the FSTP appeals process, you can contact:

The Education and Skills Funding Agency

Email: complaints.esfa@education.gov.uk

Address: Complaints Team, Education and Skills Funding Agency, Cheylesmore House, Quinton Road, Coventry, CV1 2WT.

7. Additional Policies

Apprentices should also be aware of the policies relating to the Awarding Organisation (CII, CISI, LIBF and/or Open Awards) and End Point Assessment Organisation (NOCN) within their apprenticeship programme.

This policy has been approved by:

(Senior Manager/Director/CEO, with overall responsibility for apprenticeship delivery):

Name: Philippa Grocott
Job title: Head of Regulatory Sales and Apprenticeships
Date approved: 19/10/2021
Signature:

Next planned policy review date: April 2022 (unless required sooner)