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URS ACHIEVED UKAS ACCREDITATION FOR BCM ISO 22301 - BUSINESS CONTINUITY MANAGEMENT


COMPLAINTS DISPUTES & APPEALS

URS Verification Pvt Ltd

1. Purpose:

To ensure the proper handling of complaints, disputes and appeals, so as to minimize their recurrence.

2. Scope:

This procedure deals with handling of Complaints, Disputes and Appeals and complaints.

Complaints: Formal (written) and/or informal (verbal) expressions of dissatisfaction regarding the performance of URSV from any sources such as CDM PP, general public or its representatives, govt bodies, NGOs etc.

Disputes: Disagreement between URSV and the project participant regarding the URSV’s recommendations and/or opinions/ decisions made at various stages during the validation/verification/certification functions.

Appeals: A CDM project participant requests for a review by an independent appeal panel of various decisions taken by URSV in respect of VV/certification functions.

The objective for the same is to ensure that:

All Appeals/Disputes are heard impartially.

All Complaints are dealt with fairly and expeditiously.

All Appeals/Disputes and Complaints are resolved amicably whenever possible.

All Appeals/Disputes and Complaints are handled in a non-discriminatory fashion.

The integrity of all processes is upheld.

Confidentiality is upheld.

3. Responsibilities:

It will be the overall responsibility of the Head of Operations to handle the customer complaints, disputes and appeals effectively and efficiently and to identify the root cause, initiate corrective action and maintain records.

4. Procedure of Complaint, Dispute and Appeal Handling:

 4.1. Appeals

     4.1.1. All appeals are taken seriously and given a high priority for action. Formal proceedings will be initiated if:

  • The appeal/dispute is made in writing.

  • URS receives the appeal within 21 days of a decision being given to the customer by validator or verifier, member of management,

  • The customer is an applicant or registered organization.

The Office first hearing of the Appeal shall advise the appellant in writing, of the contents of this procedure and also draw their attention to the relevant regulations (A copy of both should be supplied to the customer). Copies of all correspondence will be held in the appeals file.

When the Appeal is received by the MD, Director, and Head of Operations or in their absence, a senior manager must inform the IEC Chairman, in writing, within 3 working days. The IEC Chairman must convene an Appeals Committee, which will consist of not less than 3 members and must exclude URSV officers. The committee members must not have any involvement with the appellant and any interest must be declared. Any member with an interest cannot sit on the committee.

The committee must meet within 30 days of receipt of the appeal by URSV. The date and location of the meeting will be sent to the appellant in writing, at least 7 days before the meeting. The appeals committee shall hear the appellant and the MD/HOD (Specific Manager) separately. Minutes of the meeting shall be made with a copy held in the appeals file.

The decision of the Appeals Committee shall be final and shall be recorded in writing, with copies to the appellant and the Specific Manager. The result of an Appeal may result in Corrective or Preventive Actions being taken, these are reviewed in accordance with Form – Non Conformity Log

Appellant shall be informed about the decision of appeals committee and shall inform that the appellant in case, is not satisfied with the decision of the appeal committee, it has an option of complaining to the CDM – EB.

4.1.7 The submissions, investigation and decision on appeals do not result in any discriminatory actions against the appellant.

4.2. Complaints & Disputes

Complaints and Disputes may concern a certified customer of URSV or they may be about URSV and its representatives. A Complaint may be from a customer or a third party e.g. from a customer of the registered customer, their competition or other source. All Complaints will be treated seriously irrespective of the nature of the Complaint. They include any matter that is not the subject of an Appeal e.g.

  • Fee structure.

  • Lateness in response to customer queries.

  • Poor attitude by URS staff towards customers.

  • Dissatisfaction with a certified customer of URSV.

A dispute may be disagreement between URSV and the project participant regarding the URSV’s recommendations and/or opinions/ decisions made at various stages during the validation/verification/certification functions.

When an Office receives a Complaint, or dispute by whatever means (phone, e mail etc.) form number URSV/F05 – Non Conformity & Corrective Action Report is to be completed. If the customer complains to an assessor direct, e.g. while he is on site, the assessor must notify to the Office of the nature of the Complaint as soon as possible, either the office Staff or Inspector/ validator/verifier must complete Form number URSV/F05 – Non Conformity & Corrective Action Report. All Complaints and disputes must be recorded even if, after investigation, they prove to be unfounded. Head of Operation shall ensure acknowledging receipt of complaints or dispute, providing the complainant or disputant a progress report where feasible.

The Investigating Officer will be deputed independent of department or assessor etc involved with the complaint/dispute. The investigating officer shall gather and verify all necessary information for evaluating the validity of the complaint/dispute, investigating the complaint/dispute and for deciding what actions are to be taken in response to it. After investigating the cause of the Complaint and taking any necessary corrective action the Investigating Officer must write to the person who made the Complaint/dispute advising them of the action taken and closing the matter. All Complaint letters being filed in the Complaints file. All the complaints/disputes will be dealt expeditiously.

All the non-conformities including complaints/disputes shall be entered in NCR Log. The result of a Complaint may result in Corrective or Preventive Actions being taken, these are reviewed using and analyzing records on – Non Conformity Log.

Complaints about organizations certified by URSV are to be passed to the customer for them to resolve in the first instance. The individual receiving the complaint will consider the Management System of the subject of the Complaint and in particular the effectiveness of its complaints handling processes. The complaint will be examined in detail at the next scheduled audit to ensure that it has been handled correctly. If it has not, Non-conformity is to be raised on the customer.

All Complaints/disputes and actions taken will be discussed at the next IEC meeting. Any trends identified after analysis of Complaints will be discussed at Management Review Meetings.

The confidentiality of complainant, disputant appellant and the subject thereof shall be safeguarded. This is subject to requirements of confidentiality.

The brief of complaints, disputes and appeal handling process is available on the website of URS and is also available on request.

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