IQCS Awards 2020

The IQCS Quality Awards celebrate the unsung Heroes of Quality in research operations…those individuals and member companies who go the extra mile in making quality an integral part of the entire data-collection process.

The awards were judged by current IQCS Chair, Penny Steele and former IQCS Chair, Claire Harris and the awards winners will be announced at the IQCS AGM in December.

2020 has been a challenging year for most market research firms and everyone working in market research. We conducted the 2020 AGM and Awards ceremony using Zoom for the first time. This was very successful and enabled members who live far outside of London to join us and celebrate everyone’s achievements.

And the winners are…

IQCS Interviewer Excellence – Telephone

This award celebrates an individual or team in telephone operations who have demonstrated that they go the extra mile in consistently delivering interviewing excellence.

What the judges were looking for:

  • Dedication to quality
  • Consistently high standard of interviewing
  • Robust data-collection
  • Going the extra mile to complete a challenging project or projects
  • Delivering excellence to your internal/external client

The winner is Guillaume at RONIN International

Described as a consummate interviewer, who has mastered a range of methodologies, Guillame consistently achieves interviews with the most challenging of audiences, including C-suite executives, academics and politicians.

Ronin say that he has re-defined what they expect from their best interviewers, and has been instrumental in the development of the guidance given to new and seasoned interviewers in their training and development.

A Lead Quality Controller describes the “uncompromising quality in his output”.

While a Ronin Research Director says “I have never seen someone of his skill and commitment.  He’s simply superb”

IQCS Data Collection Excellence – Face to Face or Telephone

This award celebrates the best in Face to Face or Telephone data-collection. We are looking for a case study of a recent project which you were particularly proud of, which demonstrates how your organisation achieved fieldwork excellence in completing a particularly challenging project.

What the judges were looking for:

  • Robust data-collection
  • High quality interviewing
  • Going the extra mile to complete a challenging project
  • Delivering excellence to your internal/external client
  • Demonstration the importance of great quality assurance processes underpinning the data-collection process

The winner is Walnut Unlimited 

Walnut Unlimited describe a project that would have been challenging at any time, but with hall test fieldwork taking place in March of this year, when the pandemic had already taken hold, a new level of complexity was added.

In one testimonial, a client talks about the “meticulous care” taken, adding ….”I would highly recommend them for their skill, understanding of client and consumer needs and overall attention to detail”

While another says “We were in field as the coronavirus pandemic spread, but Walnut responded with speed and agility to adapt the operation, getting robust results in a way that was safe for staff and participants, which was a great achievement in itself!   The team did great and the output was truly insightful, enabling us to make informed business decisions.”

IQCS Quality Ambassador

The award celebrates an individual or team who consistently champion and promote quality standards for data-collection within their organisation.

What the judges were looking for:

  • Details of how the particular individual or team have been pro-active quality ambassadors for their organisation
  • Evidence of how they promote and encourage high quality standards across their business
  • Details of how the overall quality of data-collection processes or deliverables has been positively affected by the efforts of the quality ambassador/s
  • Feedback from users of the data-collection on the positive impact the quality ambassador/s has played in ensuring quality underpins all aspects of the data-collection process

This award went to B2B International‘s Quality Manager Simon Brett, who is described as “An ambassador for hope”

Simon was key to the implementation and continued running of B2B International’s response to the pandemic.

While taking on additional duties from furloughed colleagues, he continued to ensure quality standards were as high as ever, and no corners were cut.

But it’s his personal qualities that make him a stand-out candidate for this award.  Having developed tools that allowed now home-based interviewers to communicate with the office and each other, his motivational skills, and more than a touch of humour, ensured interviewers had speedy support and guidance when needed, while continuing to feel part of a team, and striving to achieve whilst being reminded that the “quality has to be great ”

In the words of one interviewer “Simon really put the effort into chatting with me and making sure I was ok on a daily basis and making me laugh through lockdown.   He really did brighten up my mornings”

At a time when his colleagues could have been feeling isolated and alone, Simon ensured the team felt supported and engaged, while reminding them that quality could not be compromised.

Best IQCS Interviewing Training and Development

The award celebrates an organisation demonstrating wholehearted commitment to interviewer-centric training and development with IQCS quality standards and the MRS Code of Conduct underpinning the whole process.

What the judges were looking for:

  • Great feedback from Interviewer attendees on both the content and administration of the training (could be examples of post-training feedback forms).
  • Promotion of the core IQCS values throughout the training
  • Inclusion of relevant information on the MRS Code of Conduct and the GDPR
  • Innovation and creativity in delivering the training – could be multi-media, PowerPoint, or through inter-activity
  • Development of existing skills through targeted follow on training in response to monitoring feedback or the unique requirements of a specific type of work (e.g. probing skills, handling B2B Gatekeepers, qual interviewing)
  • Strong focus on improving interviewer competence, confidence, engagement and morale, investing in the continual improvement of skills to ensure quality and aid interviewer retention

The award went to Perspective Research Services, and the training and on-going development of their mystery shopping team

Their submission describes an annual global mystery shopping programme, comprising 22,000 audits across 82 countries and spanning 20 languages.

Their training and development programme is underpinned by the MRS Code of Conduct, with bespoke training and on-going feedback and development.

The result is best summed up by a client, who says:

“We place our most demanding B2B mystery shopping assignments with Perspective…. Far from being “cookie cutter” in approach, our projects require mystery shoppers who are totally credible in their persona, able to master a brief and think on their feet.  This requires good recruitment in the first place, but also complete dedication to ongoing training, feedback and development”

Operational Excellence in the face of Covid-19. Your story!

The award celebrates the organisation who demonstrates operational excellence in the face of the global pandemic.

What the judges were looking for:

  • Going the extra mile to maintain great team collaboration / morale
  • Delivering excellence to your internal/external client
  • Going the extra mile to complete a challenging project
  • Showing initiatives to keep internal/external clients happy, with feedback from users

This award went to Kudos Research, who have demonstrated operational excellence in the face of the global pandemic

This award goes to Kudos Research, who have demonstrated operational excellence in the face of the global pandemic.

They had just started fieldwork on an annual study of 27,000 B2B interviews across 55 countries, “and all was going swimmingly” until the pandemic descended.

Technical expertise, inventiveness, collaborative working with two sets of clients, and sheer hard work meant a project that would be extraordinarily challenging in any normal year was successfully completed and delivered robust data to delighted clients.

When people were able to move back to the office, providing a Covid-secure environment was clearly paramount, with one interviewer saying “Times are difficult, but it helps to feel safe at work.  Being looked after by everyone at Kudos is making a real difference”

While their client says “This sort of agility is an excellent example of Kudos Research’s commitment to high quality work and solution-orientated attitude”

The IQCS Quality Awards celebrate the unsung Heroes of Quality in research operations…those individuals and member companies who go the extra mile in making quality an integral part of the entire data-collection process.

The awards are judged by current IQCS Chair, Penny Steele and former IQCS Chair, Claire Harris and the awards winners will be announced at the IQCS AGM in December.

Sponsor the IQCS Quality Awards

We are offering IQCS member companies the opportunity to support IQCS events as sponsors. Sponsors are still invited to apply for an IQCS awards. There are two tiers of sponsorship.

Silver sponsorship: £150 As a thank you, your company will be mentioned on the IQCS website, will be provided with the silver sponsorship logo and your company logo will be used on all IQCS award advertising

Gold sponsorship: £300 As a thank you, your company will get a free featured page for two months, will be provided with the gold sponsorship logo and your company logo will be used on all IQCS award advertising.

Contact Gill Wareing ([email protected]) for more information on how you can become a sponsor

Download Application Form
The awards categories for 2020 were as follows:
  • IQCS Interviewer Excellence – Telephone
  • IQCS Fieldwork Excellence – Face to Face or Telephone
  • IQCS Quality Ambassador
  • Best IQCS Interviewing Training and Development
  • Operational Excellence in the face of Covid-19. Your story!
Download Application Form