Improving access to accountability of public services - engagement: final report

Final report and recommendations from commitment 4 of the Open Government National Action Plan: improving peoples’ access to accountability of public services. This work identified common journeys and barriers to accessing accountability in Scotland.

Appendix 1: Defining Accountability

'Good Job' Cards

During the initial interviews, residents expressed examples of 'good jobs' being achieved by public services and accountability processes.

The qualities of these 'good jobs' were translated into decks of 'good job' cards, which represented examples of good practice in relation to accountability. These were used during the national events to discuss definitions of accountability, and standards of best practice across journey stages of public service use and accountability. Each card has been outlined below:

The process: Before I started, it was clear what the process would involve and this was followed.

Dialogue: I was able to have a conversation about the issue; it wasn't one-sided.

Clear and upfront information: The information was where I expected to find it. The information was easy to access and to understand.

No prior knowledge: I didn't need to be an expert to make an enquiry. It was intuitive and straightforward.

Who to contact: It was clear who I should contact for help.

Expectations: When I first got in touch, you clearly explained the process and the expected timescales.

Acknowledgement: You let me know that you had received my enquiry promptly.

Single-channel: From start to finish, everything was handled in the same way (e.g. online, on the phone etc.)

One point of contact: The same person worked with me from start to finish and was my contact point throughout.

Kept in the loop: I knew what was happening with my enquiry at all times and I was reassured that I hadn't been forgotten about.

Telling my story: I only had to tell my story once.

Encouragement: I was supported and encouraged to make my enquiry by the service or others.

Knowing my rights: I was reminded of my right to make an enquiry by the service.

Legal clarity: I had relevant laws or rules explained to me so that I could make my case.

Empathy: My complaint was handled with empathy and understanding. I knew I was being taken seriously.

Equality: I knew that I was treated the same as everyone else.

Safety: I felt safe; I wasn't afraid of consequences or repercussions.

Impact: I was informed of how my experience was used to make things better for others.

Work with me: You involved me in finding a solution.

Follow-up: You followed up with me afterwards to make sure that everything was ok.



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