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NEWS19 May 2010

Casro’s ISO push begins with launch of certification body

US— The Council of American Survey Research Organisations (Casro) has formed an independent subsidiary to audit and certify US research companies wishing to comply with the international market research standards ISO 20252 and 26362.

The ISOs set minimum quality standards for the most common survey processes, with ISO 26362 relating specifically to online and offline access panel research.

Neither standard has yet gained a strong foothold in the US, though uptake has been noticable among international research groups and in certain countries in Europe and Asia.

Casro president Diane Bowers told Research in an interview last year that “for companies involved in international research [the ISO] is a very important credential to consider, particularly when working with international clients”.

As well as launching the Casro Institute for Research Quality as an ISO certification body, Casro said it had also developed a number of educational and informational services to help companies prepare for certification.

Bowers said: “These new services are in line with our mission to help member companies improve their businesses and expand their presence internationally.”

@RESEARCH LIVE

7 Comments

9 years ago

Wondering what in the heck CASRO is trying to do to the MR industry?!?! Reminiscent of the “Great Leap Forward”, lets eliminate everything artistic and intelligent about our industry. They don't seem to understand that the beauty of good MR is the complexity and the fact that it is half art and half science. Not a bunch of simple business processes like measuring the diameter of nuts and bolts so that it can be duplicated by any unskilled worker anywhere. This Next Gen Market Researcher SAYS NO THANKS to useless certifications! I choose intelligent and creative work and simple honest transparency about who does it where and how. http://www.offshoringtransparency.org/index.php?page=directory

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9 years ago

The difference is that CASRO is truly on the side of the entire MR industry, Tom, including yourself, while YOUR efforts and the efforts of the FTO seem to be much more self-serving rather than industry serving, since they stem from personal bias rather than generally accetped and industry wide issues.

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9 years ago

CASRO agreeing on ISO is a good move and thier services would be valauable. Many may think otherwise but ISO is institution based and not created by an individual who is there today and gone tomorrow. I also checked FTO which I think is an impractical step in today's research world. I think the founder there lives in an assumption where he assumes that all agencies in the world are irresponsible when they outsource (as if they do not know what they are doing). How does it matter if the stuff is off-shored or on-shored - all that the clients today are concerned about are meaningful insights to their problems which that website does not talk about. So I am leaving FTO option aside and am hoping that the founder makes note of my comments. I welcome CASRO and hope that we have standardized processes.

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9 years ago

There are circumstances when it makes sense to allow people to express their views anonymously. This practice is usually justified when someone could suffer significant retribution by losing one's job or in the extreme case possibly one's life. I fail to see such threat in either of the two anonymous comments above. These are not whistle-blowers. Here we have two rather nasty posts from apparently petty individuals who are defending the authority establishment and the status quo. What have they to fear? It's pretty cowardly to post such strong comments anonymously – especially since both of them personally attack someone who at least has the guts to stake his name and reputation on his beliefs. I'm disappointed that a reputable industry news and discussion forum like Research-Live would permit the abuse of such a policy. But if that's how we're going to operate, so be it. I'll add my own anonymous two bits: the two individuals who posted above are stifling progress with your vicious, childish antics. Your behavior is an embarrassment to this industry. Grow up. If you have something to say, put your name to it. BTW, given the nature of the people I am criticizing here, I trust that Research-Live will respect my confidentiality, since I might actually be putting myself at risk by stating the obvious. Thank you.

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9 years ago

Thank you Anonymous #3! ;) What I am wondering is why there seem to be so many urls leading to basically the same material? For instance this one where Jeff Henning and someone else posted their views opposing ISO seems to have been replaced by the current one: http://www.research-live.com/news/news-headlines/casro-readies-us-push-for-iso-quality-standard/4001364.article This one above seems to have replaced the one which I believe your publication posted on the debate taking place in the NGMR group on LinkedIn now seems to have been totally deleted: http://www.research-live.com/news/oz-trumps-iso-with-%18best-practice-for-online/3005001.article

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9 years ago

Thanks for the clarification The error link was the one you posted in the Next Gen Market Research debate. But there is more than one link there so NP

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9 years ago

Seeing the comments from CASRO about the benefits of ISO reminded me very much of a mayor in my city who in 1991 promised to "thrust us towards the space age!" It was just a shame that he missed the rocket by approximately 30 years. But i feel the same way about ISO. It is a perfectly excellent management device for manufacturing, and for process-driven organisations where repetition and commodification have taken place: for example the factory where they make lightbulbs. But the rise of ISO, which traced the panicky response by American companies in the 1980s to the fact that Japanese quality was caning them in the marketplace, turned I feel into a somewhat one-eyed approach to business. TQM or ISO or 6 Sigma became interchangeable panaceas. The problem is, the underlying approach may suit repetitive processes (and in fieldwork we have some of these) but it is a drag factor on professionalism: that is - on roles where people must exercise creativity and judgement in equal measure. Show me an ISO company, and you're showing me a company where, by and alrge, the spark has gone out and the acocuntants have moved in. Heaven help us if people honestly think this will lead to better, more innovative, more insightful research. It will please public sector clients who employ us merely to measure - but it will be the bane of clients who employ research to help visualise the future, clarify difficult decisions and develop tough, adventurous business strategies. CASRO seems to have got itself very upset by the nature of the debate. Just put that to one side. What is at issue is the subject itself: the role of something process driven such as ISO, in a profession where - I hope - skilled individuals are given the room to make judgements.

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