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The highest quality service in accordance to the Office of Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education (OIA) Good Practice Framework

Student Complaints Investigation Services

As a further or higher education provider, it is your responsibility to handle all student complaints fairly, and follow a standard process. We carry out outsourced investigations into student complaints and academic appeals, in accordance with your institution's complaints procedure and the OIA Good Practice Framework.

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student complaints investigation training courses

Specialists in investigating complaints within further and higher education institutions

Student complaints investigation services and training for universities and colleges

When working with CMP you can expect the highest possible standards for your student complaints investigation. We offer a timely, robust and thorough response thanks to our large pool of investigators providing coverage across the UK and abroad.

Investigation expertise and training

One-off Student Complaints Investigations

We’ll investigate complaints made by students against other students, or staff within your university or college. Our expert student complaints investigators are well-practised in conducting cases at both the formal and review stages as outlined in the OIA Good Practice framework. Our empathetic nature enables the parties to feel heard, whilst fulfilling your duty of care.

Contracted investigation services

Call-off Contracts for Investigating Student Complaints

To free up internal staff time and attention, we can negotiate a contract with you, and carry out many (or all) of your student complaints investigations. With such a contract in place, we can assign a hand-picked student complaints investigator to your case, within 24 hours.

Investigations training

Student Complaints Investigation Training

We believe student complaints investigations require specific training in order to be handled correctly. Improperly handled complaints carry a huge threat to your institution’s reputation, so a training investment is more than worthwhile. We have a range of investigation training courses available, which we can tailor for your institution.

How we conduct our student complaints investigations

When seeking to fulfil your obligations under the Office of Independent Adjudicators (OIA) framework for handling student complaints, outsourcing your formal investigation is an excellent option to ensure the utmost compliance.  Our pool of expert student complaints investigators are highly experienced in responding to both formal ‘Stage 1’ and review ‘Stage 2’ levels of the student complaints process.

Further and higher education providers are especially motivated to work with us when allegations have been made against their most senior staff members. Likewise is the case when the most serious issues have emerged amongst students. In such situations it is absolutely crucial that a fair and robust investigation is carried out, for the sake of the students (and staff) involved, and for the reputation of your university or college.

When you make the decision to outsource your student complaints investigation to CMP, you can expect a timely and thorough response, with the following structure:

  1. We will assign an investigator, with the most relevant experience in handling student complaints, to your case within 24 hours of the initial referral.
  2. Once appointed, our student complaints investigator will fully scope your case, when meeting with your internal investigation lead/ referring manger, on the second day.
  3. Once the terms of reference have been agreed, interviews can commence, and subject to availability, will begin within 5 working days of the final scope.
  4. Once all interviews have taken place, a comprehensive report will be produced, which is then quality assured to ensure it conforms to our best practice standards.
  5. Your student complaints investigator will arrange for a debrief meeting to discuss the final report, and its findings with you. The report must be submitted within 30 working days of the initial referral (for all but the most highly complex cases.)

When you choose CMP to support you with your student complaints process, you truly are working with the experts. Our further and higher education investigators are hand-picked, subject to a thorough recruitment process. At an absolute minimum we ask for at least 5 years experience in handling student complaints investigations, and thanks to our internal quality assurance process, all of their work is subject to review against our own Best Practice Standards for investigation. We offer the very best in client case management software, to ensure for transparent communication of progress throughout your student complaints investigation.

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One-off Investigations into Student Complaints at College/ University

We are experienced in conducting student complaints investigations for a wide range of higher and further education establishments, across the UK. The investigator whom we assign to your case will have the knowledge and experience needed to conform to the OIA framework, in addition to your specific internal policies and procedures.

Outsourcing an investigation may seem like an unnecessary, additional cost to your organisation. However, it is very often the case that financial savings can be made when a comparison is made to the time and disruption involved to all involved parties, when a case is handled internally. You’ll also ensure that you receive the highest quality standards, reducing the likelihood of failures at subsequent appeals/ tribunals.

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Call-off Contracts to handle all of your Student complaints investigations

For universities, colleges and other educational establishments, a consistent approach to handling student complaints is an obligation. Making the decision to set up a contractual arrangement with us to carry out many (or all) of your student complaints investigations is an excellent way of achieving this.

For all of our contracted clients, we negotiate a favourable cost, with a number of flexible options dependent on your caseload. You’ll then have the privilege of being able to simply pick up the phone, or send an email to have your investigation carried out, as a priority and in the most thorough manner.

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Resources & Further Reading

When Employees Speak Up

The CMP guide to establishing the best grievance, disciplinary and whistleblowing systems.


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