Market research helps reduce risk. Good quality research provides information and understanding, which allow users to more effectively value alternatives and make better decisions. Market research analyses are the go-to solution for many professionals embarking on a new business venture as they save time, provide new insights on the business market you are working on, and help to refine and polish up your strategy. So, when firms report market research results that aren’t based on sound research principles, they are not reducing risk; in fact, they may be inadvertently increasing it.

International Standard ISO 20252:2019, Market, opinion and social research, including insights and data analytics – Vocabulary and service requirements, sets out guidance and requirements relating to the way in which market research studies are planned, carried out, supervised, and reported to clients commissioning such projects. It will encourage consistency and transparency in the way surveys are carried out, and confidence in their results and in their providers.

The global research quality standard provides a framework to:

  • Ensure timely delivery of quality services
  • Improve operational management and control of research processes
  • Reduce errors and rework
  • Enhance user reputation and provide a competitive advantage 

Don Ambrose, Chair of the ISO technical committee that updated the standard, explains: “ISO 20252 is a must-have for the market research industry. Users the world over – companies, governments, research institutes, consumer associations, universities, and marketing and advertising agencies – will benefit by having global compatibility, traceability and continual improvement. In addition, it will enable clients to obtain globally compatible, comparable and homogeneous feedback and make better-informed choices of service providers.”

ISO 20252:2019 covers all the stages of a research study: from the initial contact between the client and service provider, to presentations of results to the client. This third edition has been updated to reflect new or modified research practices and new content has been added, including the complete ISO 26362:2009, covering the management and use of access panels.

ISO 20252:2019 was developed by technical committee ISO/TC 225, Market, opinion and social research, whose secretariat is held by UNE, ISO’s member for Spain. It can be purchased from your national ISO member or through the ISO Store.