Insights Association > Resources > ISO Certification.2.1 > ISO 20252 Standard (Market Research)


The ISO Research Standard (ISO 20252 - Market, Opinion and Social Research, including Insights and Data Analytics) can provide tangible benefits to marketing research and analytics companies, to the clients of research companies, and to the general public.

For questions, program support and invoicing options, contact Juliana Wood, CIRQ's Managing Director at or 202-370-6318.

To learn more about how ISO 20252 can increase data quality across our industry, visit

WEBINAR: Getting to Know the ISO 20252 Standard

Learn about the preparation, process, and many benefits of certification from those who have done it.
Featuring Jessica Santos, Global Compliance and Quality Director, Kantar, Health Division & 
Eric Thomas, Senior Group Operations Director, Naxion. 


CIRQ’s ISO 20252:2019 program is accredited by the ANSI National Accreditation Board to ISO 17065:2012, the ISO standard for certification bodies that provide auditing and certification services.


International Recognition
ISO certification is recognized in over 160 countries around the world, making it the most widely accepted quality management standard. This global recognition means that ISO certified companies can compete on a level playing field with businesses across borders and continents. Furthermore, many international organizations and governments require suppliers and service providers to be ISO certified as a condition of doing business with them.

Global Management
Global organizations with offices in different locations, project teams working across borders, and outsourced suppliers face multiple challenges related to managing their operations effectively. ISO certification can help address these challenges by providing a systematic approach to managing quality across the enterprise.

Risk Mitigation
A documented ISO quality system manages variables and delivers “proof” of adequate controls including data protection and security addressing EU-US Privacy Shield, and other requirements and client concerns.

Increased Revenue
Studies have shown that ISO 20252-certified companies experience increased productivity and improved financial performance, compared to non-certified companies. This is due to less re-work, improved employee production, and greater client satisfaction.

Increased Efficiency
Companies that go through implementation create a Research Process (Quality) Management System which maximizes quality and efficiency. Once certified, the processes are established and guidelines in place for anyone to follow easily, making training, transitions, and trouble-shooting easier.

Employee Morale and Training
Defined roles and responsibilities, accountability of management, established training systems and a clear picture of how their roles affect quality and the overall success of the company, all contribute to more satisfied and motivated staff and ease of training new recruits.

Supplier Relationships and Control
As more processes are outsourced for efficiency and to access data in global markets, supplier relationships and quality control are increasingly critical to producing accurate and actionable data. ISO quality certification requires a company to have procedures in place to ensure that a supplier understands the requirements of the ISO research standard.

Easier Route to ISO 27001 (Information Security) Certification
Being certified to the ISO research standard enables a company to more easily certify to ISO 27001 since both require a management system with similar components.

The ISO Research Standard requires documentation of all processes and any changes, errors and discrepancies. This ensures consistency throughout production and accountability of all staff.

All processes, from cost quotation to client deliverables, are defined, outlined and documented, minimizing error. Change management is also documented, ensuring that efficiency is maximized.

Marketing Credibility & Differentiation
Credential Certification to the ISO standard provides third-party proof of your quality commitment and a respected point of differentiation in the marketplace.


Research Process Management System Quality Manual
IA and CIRQ have eliminate one of the biggest hurdles to initiating ISO 20252 implementation. The Research Process Management System Quality Manual demystifies the ISO implementation process, helping organizations understand how their current processes, procedures, management, personnel and business services align with those required for compliance to the standard. The manual’s template provides everything needed to customize the document to establish a system that provides consistent and reproduceable results.

The template offers step-by-step guidance on how to implement the standard with pro tips from the CIRQ auditor team. This includes embedded templates regarding processes and procedures, in language that maps directly to the standard and ensures a high likelihood of a successful external review. The template is delivered as a Word document, with no extraneous graphics to edit. It is intended to be individualized!

Internal Auditor Training Program
The Internal Auditor Training Program helps companies fulfill the requirement for internal compliance personnel, a key component to ISO 20252 conformity and organizational success. Developing personnel as internal auditors ensures companies identify and remediate deviations from the standard’s requirements before a formal external review. Additionally, internal auditors achieve a deeper subject matter expertise of the standard, increasing responsibilities and value as quality and compliance managers.

The program’s modular on-demand training includes short assessments that test the user’s knowledge about the requirements of ISO 20252 and ISO 27001. It also includes a deep review of auditor theories and competencies, and includes Risk Rating Matrix and Internal Audit Report templates, customizable to your company’s compliance needs. 

Upon successful completion of the program, users are issued certificates that document their grasp of audit techniques. They are now ready to conduct the required internal audits for compliance and certification.