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Festive Period: Our office will be closed from Thursday 23rd December 2021 at 5 pm until Tuesday 4th January 2022 at 9 am (inclusive). You will still be able to submit enquiries and applications during this period to our contact mailbox: contact@scoaf.org.uk. But, they won’t be actioned until we re-open in the New Year.

Phone line: We are currently operating a voicemail call back service on our contact telephone number 0300 369 0689. All messages received are collected by our Enquiries Team, Monday to Friday, 9:00 am until 16:30 pm. Please leave a voicemail, with your name, phone number, email address (if possible), and enquiryWe aim to respond to all messages within 2 working days. Any messages received to our voicemail on Friday afternoon will be retrieved on Monday, after the weekend. 

News and Blog: 2018

Address your stress for #MHAW

May 14th – 20th was Mental Health Awareness week – an annual event hosted by the Mental Health Foundation in the U.K. Each year, a different theme is explored to raise awareness of mental health, break down the stigma surrounding these issues and bring about lasting positive change. This year the theme was Stress, something […]

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Inaugural OSCO Stakeholder Symposium

  The Ombudsman hosted the inaugural stakeholder symposium for the OSCO today at the Royal College of Defence Studies. The event, which was attended by representatives from a number of civilian organisations and Service charities, aimed to raise awareness of the role of the Ombudsman and the work of her office. In addition to presentations […]

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Stakeholder Symposium 2018 Official Photo

Ombudsman signs Time to Change pledge

In a demonstration of her commitment to making the OSCO a supportive work environment, Nicola Williams, the Service Complaints Ombudsman for the Armed Forces signed the Time to Change pledge this afternoon. In doing so, the OSCO has joined the ranks of over 700 employers in England who have signed the pledge.

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How many staff does it take to investigate complaints?

No, it isn’t the start of a good joke! The question of whether an organisation has enough staff to deliver their core objectives is one that is common to most sectors, including the ombudsman community. As many of you will have seen from our recent communications, including the Annual Report, we don’t currently have enough staff to meet our published time targets. While this is an issue we are working to rectify as quickly as we can, I thought I would use my second blog this month to explore this issue further.

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Investigations folders

Forces TV – Armed Forces Complaints System Is Not “Effective, Efficient Or Fair”

The Ombudsmen for Service Complaints has said that good progress has been made in the complaints system for members of the Armed Forces, but it is still not efficient, effective or fair.

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Introducing our Chief Of Operations

In 2017 the Office of the Service Complaints Ombudsman went through a restructure in order to provide greater oversight of and resilience in the operational arm of the office. As part of that restructure, two new positions were created – Chief of Operations and Chief of Staff. This month the Ombudsman is turning her blog over to the Chief of Operations, Eleanor Handslip, so that she can tell you more about the role and what she hopes to achieve.

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Meeting with new Chief of Operations

An Independent Ear – Army & You Magazine

The Service Complaints Ombudsman for the Armed Forces, Nicola Williams, provides independent and impartial oversight of the Service complaints system. Army & You put your most common questions to her…. http://issuu.com/armyandyoumag/docs/army_you_spring_18?e=9218182/58496728 The Service Complaints Ombudsman is not responsible for the content of other websites that it links to.

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Respondents

When discussing the Service complaints process, people often focus on the complainant and the complaint handler. We want to ensure the complainant has the support they require and the complaint handler the knowledge and resources to investigate and decide the matter in a timely manner. However, there are other people involved in the complaints process […]

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Don't forget respondents needs - blackboard image