Appeals and Complaints Policy
Clients have the basic right to appeal Certification Decisions when they feel that the decisions were made where the Certification decision is incorrect; the Certification decision is not based on all available evidence (at the time of the audit); the correct procedure for evidence gathering has not been followed or there are special circumstances that should have been taken into consideration during assessment or decision making.
Clients can appeal decisions within 6 weeks after being informed of the certification decision in writing. Appeal forms can be obtained from our office either in electronic or hard copy format.
Within 2 weeks after receipt of an appeal a formal appeal review meeting will be held. All members involved in the review must be independent and not have played a role in any assessments of the client or in the dispute or a previous certification decision for that client for a period of at least 1 year.
If there is/are reason(s) to question the legitimacy of the initial certification decision, the appeals shall be GRANTED and a new certification decision will be made by the Certification Approval Panel (please note that this does not automatically mean that the new certification decision will be different from the initial decision).
If the appeal review does not reveal any reason to question the legitimacy of the certification decision, the appeal is denied and the initial certification decision will remain unchanged.
The client will be informed of the outcome of the appeal process in writing.
As a quality organisation that strives for continuous improvement of its processes and services, ECAAS encourages its clients as well as any other member of the public to notify us if you are not fully satisfied with our services or processes as this provides us the opportunity to further improve our performance.
We also encourage people to notify us in situations where anyone is of the opinion that one of our certified clients is breaching the conditions of certification, including the applicable certification requirements.
Complaints can be lodged by phone, email, letter, or personally (for example during audits). To enable proper assessment of the issue, please provide as much detail of the case as possible as well as contact details, so we can get in touch in case we need more information about the matter and notify you of the actions we have taken.
On receipt of a complaint, we will investigate the situation and, where necessary, take action to correct the situation and determine measures to prevent recurrence of similar issues. It is important to understand that that may include discussion of the complaint with the certified client or with the staff member or external service provider that the complaint relates to. As a result, due to the specifics of the complaint, the client or staff member may become aware of the identity of the complainant. If you do not want this to happen, please contact the Managing Director or Client Services Manager for a confidential discussion about the matter before you decide to formalise your complaint.
We strive to inform the complainant about the outcome of our investigation and the subsequent actions taken. Please note that our Confidentiality Policy may prevent us from disclosing specific information on the outcome of our investigation or the actions taken, particularly where it concerns a complaint about one of our certified clients.