Our complaints procedure

There are two procedures which you can use to raise a formal compliant:

1. With our customer services team:

We can be contacted on 0800 038 2177 or by completing a webform here.

The customer service team are best placed to assist you and will make every effort to resolve your complaint at first contact. Where further investigation is required they will keep you fully informed throughout the investigation process.

If your concerns are not fully addressed and your complaint has not been resolved to your satisfaction, you may wish to formalise your complaint in one of the following ways:

- By completing a complaints webform here.

- Telephoning us on 0800 038 2177.

- Or by writing to:

Tracey Bayliss

Customer Services Manager

Vision Express

Ruddington Fields Business Park

Mere Way, Ruddington,

Nottinghamshire NG11 6NZ

2. With the NHS Complaints Service:

Any complaint relating to an NHS Sight Test could alternatively be lodged with the NHS via the below link:

Contact the NHS

What is a complaint?

A complaint is when someone expresses dissatisfaction and provides evidence of:

1. A deficient service received from us,

2. An action we have taken, or a failure to take action, when made aware, which has had a negative impact on the customer.

The complaint can also be about any person or organisation acting on behalf of Vision Express. 

To be dealt with under the complaints procedure, your complaint must be about something that has happened or has come to your attention within the last twelve months.

There are some instances when we will not be able to deal with your issue via the complaints process. These are: - If your complaint relates to a legal matter which is already being dealt with by a solicitor. - If the complaint is in regard to any agent acting on behalf of Vision Express, customers may be advised to proceed through the agent’s complaint handling process first before we will consider the matter.

What happens next?

We promise to contact you within two working days (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm) to acknowledge your complaint. The Customer Service team will work to resolve your complaint as quickly as possible. 

 Initial complaint

Our Customer Services team will work with you to resolve your complaint to your satisfaction.

Stage 1

If you are unhappy with how your complaint has been resolved, you can ask for the complaint to be escalated. We would ask that you demonstrate that your complaint has not been dealt with fairly or satisfactorily. Your complaint will be investigated by a senior member of the Customer Service team and you will receive a personal response from them.

What if you’re still not happy?

If your complaint is related to your NHS sight test and you are not happy with how your complaint has been handled either by us or the NHS, you have the right to take your complaint to the Health Service Commissioner (Ombudsman). If your complaint relates to your spectacles or contact lenses you can contact the Optical Consumer Complaints service (OCCS).

For complaint disputes:

The OCCS is an independent organisation which provides a free and fair way of dealing with complaints about Optical Care Professionals.

The Optical Consumer Complaints Service can be contacted via: Telephone: 0844 800 5071 Email: enquiries@opticalcomplaints.co.uk Website: http://www.opticalcomplaints.co.uk/

We will comply with any recommendations made by the Optical Consumer Complaints Service.

For Fitness to Practice or Illegal Practice in the Optical Sector: The General Optical Council (GOC) regulate the individual professionals with the Optical Profession within the UK.

They have four core functions:

  • Setting standards for optical education and training, performance and conduct. ï‚· Approving qualifications leading to registration.
  • Maintaining a register of individuals who are qualified and fit to practise, train or carry on business as optometrists and dispensing opticians.
  • Investigating and acting where registrants’ fitness to practise, train or carry on business is impaired.  
  • The General Optical Council (GOC) can also be contacted via - Telephone: 020 7580 3898 option 2 - Website: https://www.optical.org/  

Learning from complaints

At Vision Express we consider customer complaints to be a fantastic opportunity to learn about what or how we can improve our service. We therefore want to learn from every complaint, in order to do this we monitor every complaint with the aim to implement working practices to prevent similar incidents happening again.  

What we ask from you

If a complaint is pursued unreasonably or where a customer’s actions or behaviours are deemed to be unreasonable, we reserve the right to close the complaint. You will be informed the reasons for our decision. We further reserve the right to deal with a complaint differently than is outlined in our complaints policy, if deemed necessary. Evidence and reasoning will be provided should we follow this route. Additionally, a complaint will not be reopened unless new evidence has been provided that was not available or presented when the complaint was first heard.  Our staff our entitled to work in a safe environment; they should be able to undertake their duties without facing threatening behaviour or offensive language.  

 Your safety

Our stores and its practitioners and staff are committed to operating and maintaining effective systems for infection control to protect both customers and staff. We comply with all relevant Health and Safety Executive legislation and Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency requirements.

 Customer choice

NHS patients have the right to a choice of optometrist where there is more than one available in our store. If you have any preference, please inform a member of the team prior to your examination and we will be able to advise if your choice is available.