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Service Agreement Information Kit for Funded Organisations

4.5 Compliment and complaint management

Department of Health and Human Services

The Department of Health and Human Services (the department) is committed to listening to and responding to compliments and complaints. This important feedback informs the development and delivery of policies, programs and services that support and enhance the well-being of all Victorians. 

The department aims to ensure services provided and funded, are effective and responsive to the people accessing them and therefore encourages transparent feedback processes.

Who does this policy apply to?

The policy is specifically designed for use by organisations funded by the Department of Health and Human Services.

Policy purpose

The purpose of the policy is to assist organisations in establishing or reviewing their existing practical frameworks relating to complaints and other forms of feedback. Organisations can adapt the sample compliment and complaint management policy document to meet their specific needs.

Legislation and/or regulation

Some organisations funded by the department are subject to specific legislative requirements and policy frameworks governing their approach to complaints management, for example the Disability Act 2006, Mental Health Act 2014, National Health Safety and Quality Standards. Organisations should ensure that they are fully informed of these requirements and they comply with them.

Client Services and Complaints Charter

The department has additional information, including a brochure, on the department's Client Services Charter (external link, opens in a new window) web page.   

Organisation requirements

It is important that all compliments and complaints are managed in line with the departments’ guiding principles of visibility and accessibility, responsiveness, assessment and investigation, feedback, improvement focussed and service excellence.

Compliments and complaints related to funded organisation services should be handled by the funded organisation in the first instance. Funded organisations must have an accessible, responsive and transparent compliments, complaints and feedback framework to ensure continuous improvement.

Each funded organisation needs to decide how their compliments, complaints and feedback framework will work most effectively in the context of their service delivery while adhering to the departments’ principles.

What is a complaint?

The departments’ definition of a complaint is taken from the Australian Standard AS ISO 10002-2014 Customer Satisfaction – Guidelines for Complaints Handling in Organisations.  A complaint is defined as ‘an expression of dissatisfaction made to or about an organisation, related to its products, services, staff or the handling of a complaint, where a response or resolution is explicitly or implicitly expected’.

What is a compliment?

A compliment is an expression of praise, encouragement or gratitude about a service that is funded, regulated or provided. It may be about an individual staff member, a team or a service.

Sample compliment and complaint management policy

A generic sample compliment and complaint management policy document is specifically designed for use by funded organisations. This is provided to assist organisations in establishing or reviewing their existing practical frameworks relating to compliments, complaints and other forms of feedback. Organisations can adapt the sample compliment and complaint management policy document to meet their specific needs. The sample and template documents include:

For further information

The Department of Health and Human Services, Complaints and Privacy Unit provide support and assistance in the management and development of complaints policies, guidelines and processes. 

The Complaints and Privacy Unit provides a complaints line for departmental staff, clients and members of the public to register their feedback and complaints.

Complaints line: 1300 884 706
Email: complaints.reception@dhhs.vic.gov.au
Complaints and Privacy Unit
GPO Box 4057
Melbourne VIC 3001

The department's website includes a guide to Making a complaint to the Department of Health and Human Services (external link, opens in a new window).

Department of Education and Training

The Department of Education and Training (DET) is committed to listening to and responding to compliments and complaints. This important feedback informs the development and delivery of policies, programs and services that support and enhance the educational opportunities provided to Victorians.

DET aims to ensure funded services are effective and responsive to the needs of children and families, and therefore it encourages transparent feedback processes.

Guiding principles

The DET Complaints Charter (external links, opens in a new window) sets out guiding principles that should be followed by funded organisations when responding to complaints. It includes a requirement to act respectfully, impartially, to maintain confidentiality and to keep the complainant informed of the progress of inquiries, among other things.

Complaints about approved child care and licenced children’s services

The Quality Assessment and Regulation Division (QARD) is responsible for ensuring that approved providers safeguard the safety, health and wellbeing of children in kindergarten, long day care, family day care and outside school hours care.

QARD also regulates other services which continue to operate under the Children’s Services Act 1996, mostly offering occasional care.

Resources

Contact details

Regions: Quality Assessment and Regulation Regional Offices (Word 765 KB, opens in a new window)
Telephone: 1300 307 415
Email:  licensed.childrens.services@edumail.vic.gov.au

Complaints about other Early Childhood Services and Programs

Other Early Childhood Services and Programs do not operate under the National Quality Framework or the Children’s Services Act 1996.  They include the Aboriginal Early Years Services, Early Childhood Intervention Services, access and participation to funded kindergarten program and services including Access to Early Learning, Maternal and Child Health Services, Parenting Services, Best Start and the Children’s Facilities Capital Program. 

For further information, refer to Complaints about Other Early Childhood Services and Programs (external link, opens in a new window).

Contact details:

Regions: contact the Early Childhood Performance and Planning Advisers in the Regional Offices (external link, opens in a new window)

Email: community.stakeholders@edumail.vic.gov.au

Sample compliment and complaint management policy

A generic sample compliment and complaint management policy document, is specifically designed for use by funded organisations. This is provided to assist organisations in establishing or reviewing their existing practical frameworks relating to compliments, complaints and other forms of feedback. Organisations can adapt the sample compliment and complaint management policy document to meet their specific needs. The sample and template documents include: