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Complaints Officer OCC6994

Job Details:

Salary Range: £37,107 - £39,961 per annum

Work Location: County Hall, Oxford

Hours per week: 37

Contract Type: Permanent

Closing Date: Thursday 13 December 2018

Interview Date: Tuesday 18 December 2018

Advert Text:

An opportunity exists in the Council's Complaints Team for an experienced complaints case officer.  Proven research and analytical abilities are essential, together with excellent interpersonal and written communication skills.  The postholder will be taking responsibility for managing a range of adult and children's social care cases ensuring that these are fully investigated in accordance with law, policy and good governance. You will also be expected to provide support and advice to the Council on social care and non-social care complaints and their resolution. The successful candidate will be able to provide constructive challenge to the Council's senior managers and have strong customer service skills.  An ability to maintain absolute confidentiality is a must. As part of a small professional team in an age of change, you'll also need to be adaptable and a clear team-player.

Job Purpose:

  1. To ensure that the Directorate meets its statutory duties and responsibilities in  respect  of  complaints  and  representations  under  the  Local  Authority Social Services Act 1970 (inserted by the National Health Service & Community Care Act 1990), the Children Acts 1989 and 2004 and other relevant legislation including the Local Authorities’ Social Services and National Health Service Complaints (England) Regulations 2009 and the Children Act 1989 Representations Procedure (England) Regulations 2006.
  2. To improve the consistency, effectiveness and efficiency of the Council’s Corporate and Statutory Complaints service; and ensure the learning from all complaints contributes to continuous improvement.
  3. To work with and across directorates to promote good customer services and provide a timely and resolution-focused approach to complaints.
  4. To line manage support staff and/or take on additional high-level project work on behalf of the Council.

Role Responsibilities:

  • To act as the authority’s Complaints Officer for the purposes of the Local Authorities’ Social Services Complaints (England) Regulations, 2006 and the Children Act 1989 Representations Procedure (England) Regulations 2006.
  • Liaise with the Access & disclosure Team to assist with complaints received via the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman, Members and MP’s, minimizing the risk of any findings of maladministration by the LGSCO
  • To alert the monitoring officer to any potential maladministration or non-compliance issues, and to be alive to the media and reputational implications of particular scenarios and resolutions.
  • To support the service in developing a strong resolutions and restorative based approach to managing complaints, seeking to ensure problem solving and conflict resolution models are in place, whilst ensuring complainants’ rights to have their representations addressed in accordance with legislation, regulation and Council policies. Ensure complainants have support to access information about the complaints and representations procedures, advocacy and mediation services.
  • To advise, challenge and assist managers and directorates on achieving resolutions for difficult corporate and statutory complaints. To exercise judgement, based on post-holder’s knowledge of the expectations of the LGSCO, to persuade managers of the appropriate resolutions to complaints.
  • To scrutinise and advise upon every draft final response to a corporate complaint which has reached the last stage of the Council’s internal procedures. To scrutinise and advise upon every draft final response to a statutory complaint.
  • Provide information to the Complaints Manager on outcomes and themes from complaints and representations to form a basis for performance measurement and quality assurance development, and to inform continuous improvement cycles.
  • To use effective systems, arrangements, and protocols, for maintaining accurate records and data with regard to all complaints and representations received.
  • To work with Joint Commissioning teams to support their work with providers, and developing systems for responding to and learning from all the statutory complaints the council receives about Children’s and Adults social care.
  • To ensure that prescribed time-scales are met with respect to the consideration of complaints at each of the stages of the complaints and representations procedures.

Role Requirements - Essential:

Skills and Aptitudes:

  • Knowledge of relevant legislation and policy and good practice in relation to complaints
  • Proven ability to communicate both in person and in writing with a wide range of audiences
  • Ability to make clear decisions that take full account of cost management, efficiency and risk
  • Seeks out and acts on opportunities, including working with others, for improving services to customers
  • Ability to develop effective internal and external relationships and networks
  • Ability to use ICT packages, spreadsheets and databases to analyse and report on themes, trends & patterns.


  • Degree or relevant professional qualification (or extensive relevant experience)
  • Evidence of continuous professional development


  • Experience of handling complex issues and/or complaints
  • Able to problem solve in a complex environment

Other requirements:

  • Reflective, resilient and responds positively to change
  • Able to travel throughout the county and elsewhere as required
  • A flexible and proactive approach to working hours, and the provision of out of hours advice, guidance and decision-making as required

Role requirements - Desirable:

Skills and Aptitudes:

  • Knowledge of social work practice and case work interventions
  • Knowledge of resolution- based approaches
  • Knowledge and understanding of working in a political environment


  • Evidence of up to date training in safeguarding


  • Experience of reporting to senior managers, Councillors and external agencies
  • Experience of social work practice and case work

Other requirements:

  • Ability to train others

Vetting Requirements:

This post is subject to a Criminal Records Check.

Contact details for an informal discussion:

Sarah Rowan, Complaints Manager on 01865 816395

Our Organisation is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, young people and adults. We expect all employees, workers and volunteers to share this commitment. We will ensure that all our recruitment and selection practices reflect this commitment.

As a Disability Confident employer we guarantee an interview for disabled applicants who meet the essential criteria for the job. We also guarantee interviews to care leavers who have completed further education and who meet the essential criteria for the job. For those leaving care without any further education we guarantee an interview for our apprenticeships. 

All posts, unless stated otherwise, are open to part time working and job share arrangements.

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