As good-quality fieldwork is the pivot around which good-quality data collection revolves, it is important that adequate controls be imposed to maintain high-quality fieldwork.
As part of its concern about instituting and maintaining good-quality fieldwork, the Market Research Society (MRS) operates an IQCS and in 2002, 84 companies were members of the scheme.
The scheme covers the following types of fieldwork: consumer, social and qualitative research, consumer and retail panels and audits, hall tests and telephone research. In each case the scheme lays down minimum standards for recruitment, office procedures, supervision, training, quality control (IQCS standards are in line with BS 5750) and survey administration. Each member company is visited annually by an independent inspector and required to produce documentation and other evidence that it conforms to or exceeds the minimum standards. Inspection can be made with a minimum of 24 hours' notice. If accepted as a member of the scheme, the company is shown in the MRS listing of organizations, and if providing market research services, in the Research Buyer's Guide. Members of the IQCS are also listed in its own annual handbook, IQCS Minimum Service Standards for Market Research Data Collection. That booklet and full details of the IQCS standards will be sent on request, by IQCS, 6 Walkfield Drive, Epsom Downs, Surrey KT18 5UF (Tel: 01737 379 261, Fax: 01737 351 171, E-mail: [email protected])._
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