Please note- This is a preview of the ‘Conditions of Engagement' document you will be asked to agree to at the end of the registration as an ESA Mystery Shopper.
AGREEMENT FOR INDEPENDENT FIELD RESEARCHERS TO CONDUCT
RESEARCH ASSIGNMENTS WITHIN THE UNITED KINGDOM
ESA Market Research Limited (“the Company”) has a requirement for field researchers to undertake a variety of market research assignments including mystery shopping and in-store observations (“Assignments”).
For the avoidance of any doubt, the Company is under no obligation to offer you an Assignment and you are under no obligation to accept an Assignment. If you do accept an Assignment, the following terms and conditions apply:
You will be offered work on an ‘assignment only’ basis and your acceptance of these terms does not form a contract of employment between yourself and the Company. Your relationship to the Company will be that of self-employed field researcher and nothing in this Agreement shall render you an employee, worker, agent or partner of the Company and you shall not hold yourself out as such.
Save for those terms that apply after completion of the Assignment, the remaining terms only apply for the duration of the Assignment.
When an Assignment is posted on the Company’s website, you have the right to declare your interest. If you are offered an Assignment, you have the right to accept or reject the offer.
When offered an Assignment, and you confirm acceptance, the details of the Assignment will be provided to you. This will include timescales for completion although there are no set hours.
Your role is to complete the Assignment in accordance with the specification and the Market Research Society Code of Conduct. The Company reserves the right to revise the specification of the Assignment during the course of the fieldwork, if the client requirements change.
If you are unable to complete an Assignment for whatever reason, you must immediately inform the person who allocated the Assignment to you (or if they are not available, a Project Manager at Head Office). You may allocate the Assignment to a suitably qualified substitute provided that the substitute is registered on the Company’s online database of field researchers and you receive prior approval from the Company. The substitute will also be subject to these terms and conditions.
The nature of the Assignments that may be offered to you may require you to operate from your home address and / or may involve visiting clients’ premises.
Assignments are not guaranteed and there is no obligation on the Company to offer Assignments to you, or any obligation on you to accept such Assignments as may be offered. Any offer of an Assignment is not indicative of an obligation on the Company to offer future Assignments.
If you are offered an Assignment and for whatever reason the Company has to withdraw such offer, the Company will give you as much advanced notice as possible.
When returning data for an assignment you have completed, please note if this is done via our Contact Centre that calls may be recorded for training purposes.
Fees and Expenses
The fee is a fixed sum payable upon completion of the Assignment and production of an invoice. The fee will vary according to the length and complexity of the Assignment being undertaken. You will be advised of the fee relating to the Assignment, when the Assignment is allocated to you. By accepting the Assignment you agree to undertake the work at the advertised fee.
A purchase order will be sent to you for each Assignment. The purchase order will set out the fee. If assignments are validated and approved by the 20th of the month in which the Assignment was completed, you will be paid directly into your bank account on or around the 10th of the following month.
You must not alter the purchase order unless you have prior agreement from a Project Manager in Head Office. If you do alter the purchase order, it may be necessary to refer this to the Operations Manager and this will delay your payment.
The completion date or time of the Assignment must be strictly adhered to and the Assignment requirements fulfilled in order for fee claims to be authorised. Fees will only be paid on receipt of a satisfactorily completed Assignment questionnaire. The Company reserves the right to withhold payment in respect of incomplete or late completion of Assignments where it is not possible to use the data provided.
You have sole responsibility for the payment of all tax and national insurance contributions together with any interest, penalties and/or costs related to any demand for tax or national insurance (‘Taxes’) arising in relation to any fees or other payments payable under this Agreement. You will indemnify the Company in respect of all and any Taxes on a grossed up basis which may be found due from the Company on any payments made to you under this Agreement
For the avoidance of any doubt, the Company shall not be liable for any statutory employment rights or benefits including but not limited to liability for holiday pay, statutory sick pay, maternity pay, pension or any other statutory employment rights.
The Company has the right to deduct from your fee any sum which you owe to the Company including, without limitation, any overpayment or any other item identified as being repayable by you to the Company.
Hire of Equipment
You may be required to use certain equipment in order to carry out an Assignment. The Company can provide you with certain items of equipment on a hire basis. The nature of the equipment required and the cost of the hire will be set out in the Assignment specification. The Company will recover the hire cost via an appropriate deduction from your fee and by signifying your acceptance of this Agreement you agree to such deductions.
You will be responsible for the equipment hired to you and hire costs will include an element to cover the insurance of the equipment. However, should you not return the equipment to the Company, or should the equipment be returned in an unsatisfactory condition (other than normal wear and tear), and where the condition is as a result of gross negligence on your part, the cost of a replacement or a proportionate amount of this, as decided by the Company, will be deducted from any fee owing to you, or you will otherwise reimburse the Company.
Liability and Insurance
You will take all steps necessary to protect your own health and safety and that of others. The Company has no liability in relation to any third parties for any claims arising out of your conduct on an Assignment.
You shall indemnify and keep indemnified the Company against all liability, action, claims and/or demands arising from your negligence, dishonesty, misconduct or breach of this Agreement, including but not limited to personal injuries or death of any person or any loss or damage to property (including property of the Company), without limitation.
You shall maintain adequate and appropriate insurance to cover your liabilities under this Agreement. In addition, if you choose to use your vehicle to carry out an Assignment, it is your responsibility to ensure that your vehicle is adequately insured for business use.
Code of Conduct and Right to Work
All field researchers are bound to comply with the Market Research Society Code of Conduct, which is available to view on the researcher area of the Company Website; http://www.esa.co.uk or from the website of the Market Research Society: http://www.mrs.org.uk . It is your responsibility to familiarise yourself with this Code. Failure to comply with the Code of Conduct will result in immediate termination of this Agreement and immediate removal from the Company Database. If you have any queries relating to the MRS Code of Conduct or the Company Procedures, please discuss these with a Supervisor or a Project Manager within Head Office
A list of Frequently Asked Questions is available on the researcher area of the Company website http://www.mrs.org.uk These cover a variety of topics including the Company rules and procedures and you should familiarise yourself with these prior to undertaking an Assignment for the Company.
You agree that in accordance with accepted market research principles, you will not accept an Assignment if you, a member of your family or a close friend / associate either work for, or is connected with the client of the Company who has commissioned the Assignment.
You acknowledge that the Company reserves the right to remove you from its database at any time and without prior notice to you. You equally may request at any time that the Company remove you from the database.
In the normal course of an Assignment with the Company, you will have access to and be entrusted with Confidential Information. To protect the confidentiality of this information you agree:
(a) not at any time, whether during or following this Assignment with the Company (unless expressly so authorised by the Company in writing or as a necessary part of the performance of the Assignment), to disclose to any person or to make use of any such confidential information;
(b) to deliver to the Company, before the end of the Assignment all documents and records belonging to the Company which are in your possession or under your control, including all documents and records made by you in the course of the Assignment and relating to the affairs of the Company, such as computer disks and other storage media, tapes, diaries, telephone lists and other tangible items belonging to the Company;
(c) not at any time to make any copy, abstract, summary or précis of the whole or any part of any document, computer program, tape or other tangible items belonging to the Company, except when required to do so in the course of an Assignment, in which event the disk, C.D., tape, program, copy, abstract, summary or précis shall belong to the Company and shall likewise be delivered up immediately upon termination of this Agreement; and
(d) that you will, if at any time requested by the Company, delete all confidential information from any computer disks, tapes or other re-usable material in your possession or under your control and destroy all other documents and tangible items in your possession or under your control which refer to or contain any confidential information.
For the purposes of this clause Confidential Information shall be deemed to include: information relating to the business methods, corporate plans, management systems, finances, maturing new business opportunities, or research and development projects; marketing information relating to the marketing or sales of any past, present or future product or service including without limitation sales targets and statistics, market share and pricing statistics, marketing surveys and plans, market research reports, sales techniques, price lists, discount structures, the names, addresses, telephone numbers, contact names and identities of customers and potential customers of, and suppliers and potential suppliers to, the Company and all confidential aspects of their business relationship with the Company; technical information consisting of all and any trade secrets, secret formulae, processes, inventions, designs, know-how, discoveries, technical specifications and other technical information relating to the creation, production or supply of any past, present or future product or service of the Company; information relating to the trade secrets or other information of a confidential nature belonging to the customers of the Company or in respect of which the Company owes an obligation of confidence.
Inventions, Improvements and Patents
You shall disclose to the Company any discovery, invention or improvement to an existing invention or process.
Any and all improvements, designs or inventions, whether capable of registration or not made by you during the course of the Assignment with the Company, shall be the property of the Company and you will sign all documents and do all necessary acts required to transfer title in such improvements or inventions to the Company without any additional compensation or payment, save for any expenses or disbursements incurred for the purposes of transferring title to the Company. Nothing in this clause shall affect any rights conferred by the Patents Act 1977, the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 or any statutory modification or re-enactment thereof.
You are required to devote the whole of your time, attention and abilities in order to complete any Assignment allocated to you by the Company. However, you are permitted to engage in other activities, including market research projects with other organisations, provided this does not have a detrimental impact on your ability to satisfactorily complete an Assignment allocated to you.
You must not engage in any conduct or activity that is detrimental to the interests of the Company or to any client of the Company.
Without prejudice to those terms that continue to bind you and the Company after termination, either you or the Company can terminate this Agreement by giving one days’ written notice.
This Agreement is governed by and to be construed in accordance with English law and the parties submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts.