Interviewer Quality Control Scheme

The Interviewer Quality Control Scheme (IQCS) is an independently run scheme, which requires members to adhere to a set of benchmark market research industry standards. These cover the recruitment, training and appraisal of fieldwork staff, and the implementation of various administrative and validation procedures to maintain the quality and accuracy of data collected.

The IQCS standards have been serving the demands of the market research industry since 1978, and are held in high regard by both clients and the research industry, globally. The IQCS Council comprises elected members working in the industry and representing not only the various types of market research fieldwork undertaken, but also clients and various other industry bodies, including the MRS, MRQSAB and AURA.

Further information on IQCS can be obtained from their website at or by telephoning IQCS Administrator, Gill Wareing on 07935 057275, or emailing

Market, opinion and social research – Vocabulary and service requirements

BS ISO 20252:2019 establishes the terms and definitions as well as the service requirements for organizations and professionals conducting market,opinion and social research.

The standard sets out requirements for a quality management system. The standard requires senior management to be responsible for quality of client service, and the development, interpretation and continual improvement of the system. It also requires the appointment of a quality manager with sufficient authority to be responsible for and have control over the entire system.

The standard also sets out requirements for the confidentiality of research, project documentation, training, outsourcing, and reviewing the effectiveness of the quality system as a whole.

Ordering copies

MRS has arranged for members to receive a 25% discount on copies of BS ISO 20252. To order please contact tel: 020 7566 1853.

In addition to MRS standards, researchers should also be aware of other legal, ethical, professional and regulatory rules.

Other Professional and Regulatory Bodies

Advertising Standards Authority (ASA)

Association for Qualitative Research (AQR)

Association of Users of Research Agencies (AURA)

Council of American Survey Research Organizations (CASRO) 

Children’s Ethical Communications Kit (CHECK)

Data & Marketing Association (DMA)


Social Research Association (SRA)

Government standards

Government Social Research - Ethical Assurance for Social Research in Government

The guidance sets out the key principles which should be upheld in the conduct of social research for government. The document was written in consultation with MRS and has been aligned with the MRS Code of Conduct.

Audit Commission

Directgov Government website, portal to all public services

Equality and Human Rights Commission Amongst other information it provides insight into categories for ethnic monitoring

Food Standards Agency covers research and labelling legislation, food handling advice

INVOLVE promotes public involvement in NHS, public health and social care research

Local Authorities Research & Intelligence Association (LARIA)

Local Government Association (LGA)

Local Government Improvement and Development  

Trading Standards Institute (TSI)

Public standards


Citizens Advice Bureau

Consumers Association (Which?)

Office for National Statistics (ONS)

Academic Standards

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)

Research Councils UK

Sociological Research Online

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