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[this is a icon-] A slice from a data cube dataset

Social Security Scotland Feedback: Complaints: a data cube slice

Feedback statistics covering complaints received by Social Security Scotland.

View as a spreadsheet
Benefit Type
  1. All
  2. Best Start Grant
  3. Carer's Allowance Supplement
  4. Funeral Support Payment
  5. Job Start Payment
  6. Not benefit specific
  7. Young Carer Grant
Measure Type
  1. Count
  1. All
  2. Disagreement with a decision
  3. Dissatisfaction with Scottish Government policy
  4. Failure to follow the appropriate process
  5. Failure to provide a service
  6. Inadequate standard of service
  7. Treatment by or attitude of a member of staff
Reference Period
  1. 2018/2019
  2. 2019/2020
  3. 2020-09
Stage Of Complaints Process
  1. All
  2. Stage 1 - Frontline Resolution
  3. Stage 2 - Investigation
Reference Area
(showing types of area available in these data)
  1. Countries
Entire dataset
Note: These may be large files.
About the Dataset
Not supplied
Not supplied
In dataset
Next update due
July 2021

Feedback statistics covering the number of complaints received by Social Security Scotland from 4 September 2018 to 30 September 2020. Figures are broken down by financial year, however only six months of the latest financial year are currently available (April to September 2020).

Carer’s Allowance Supplement (CAS) was launched in September 2018, followed by Best Start Grant (BSG) Pregnancy and Baby Payment (December 2018), Best Start Grant Early Learning Payment (April 2019), Best Start Grant School Age Payment (June 2019), Best Start Foods (August 2019), Funeral Support Payment (September 2019), Young Carer Grant (October 2019) and Job Start Payment (August 2020).

Data on complaint outcomes, compliments and suggestions are also available in separate datasets.

The full publication and tables covering complaints, compliments and suggestions are available on the Scottish Government website.

Confidentiality Policy

This data contains no sensitive, personal information.

Quality Management

The data used to produce the official statistics are the same as the data extracted from the case management system on a monthly basis that is used for internal reporting within Social Security Scotland. As such, the data is checked monthly for consistency with previous extracts (for example, do numbers of complaints, compliments and suggestions received increase as expected over time). Summary figures for number of complaints have been compared to equivalent summary figures produced from clerical records, and discrepancies investigated.

Additional quality assurance and cleaning has been carried out on specific variables:

• The dataset has been checked for duplicate records based on Case ID number.

• Variables have been checked for missing information.

• Feedback received dates and decisions dates have been checked to see whether they fall within expected ranges (e.g. after September 2018) and are consistent with those produced by clerical records.

• For complaints, the benefit that a complaint refers to and reason for the complaint have been checked for consistency between stage 1 and stage 2.

Once the data is aggregated for publication, the final statistics are quality assured by a different member of the statistics team. The final data tables are checked by the lead statistician.

Accuracy and Reliability

• Rounding and disclosure control

Feedback numbers have been rounded to the nearest five for disclosure control. Figures may not sum due to rounding.

• Stage 1 and Stage 2 complaints

For complaint benefit and reason, we have used the first recorded benefit or reason with a complaint. For complaint outcomes, if an application had both a stage 1 and stage 2 complaint outcome, we have counted this as two separate outcomes – a complaint that progressed from stage 1 to stage 2 will have two outcomes.

Complaints that went straight to stage 2 are included in total complaints and stage 2 complaints figures, and used to calculate the percentage of complaints reaching stage 2.

• Comparison to clerical data

Comparison of data from the case management system to clerical records showed several discrepancies. These discrepancies have been investigated with the Client Experience team, and errors in case management system data have been manually fixed to match the clerical record.

Coherence and Comparability

• Comparisons with DWP complaints statistics

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has a different complaints process to Social Security Scotland, and as such, DWP complaints statistics are not directly comparable to these statistics. Further information about complaints at DWP and links to their latest statistics are available on the DWP website.

Accessibility and Clarity

Complaints fall under the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO) and their complaints handling procedure. This sets out a 2 stage internal complaints process. Frontline resolution – stage 1, allows 5 working days to respond to the client’s complaint. Where a client remains unhappy with this response they can proceed to investigation – stage 2, which allows 20 working days to investigate and provide a response. If the client still remains unhappy then they can choose to take their complaint to the SPSO.

A small number of complaints went straight to investigation – stage 2. Not all complaints are suitable for frontline resolution and not all complaints will be satisfactorily resolved at that stage. Complaints handled at the investigation stage of the complaints handling procedure are typically complex or require a detailed examination. Examples of this include:

• the client/appointee refuses to take part in frontline resolution

• the issues raised are complex and require detailed investigation

• the complaint relates to serious, high-risk or high-profile issues

The majority of Stage 2 complaints were initially received at stage 1 and later progressed to stage 2.

Not supplied
Timeliness and Punctuality

Datasets will be updated on within one month of the date of the publication.

The publications are available on the Scottish Government website.


Revisions and corrections to previously published statistics are dealt with in accordance with the Scottish Government Statistician Group corporate policy statement on revisions and corrections - a copy of which is available on the Scottish Government website.


This slice of multidimensional data is not a Linked Data resource in the database: it's a virtual resource (i.e. you can't query it by SPARQL). But does have a permanent unique URL which can be bookmarked.
Dimensions Linked Data

A linked data-orientated view of dimensions and values

Dimension Locked Value
Stage Of Complaints Process
Stage 2 - Investigation
Benefit Type
(not locked to a value)
(not locked to a value)
Reference Area
(not locked to a value)
Reference Period
(not locked to a value)
Measure Type
(not locked to a value)