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Become a Shopper

Why shop for Insula Research?
Because you want to shop for the best! Insula Research is a BBB and MSPA member with a proven record of building long-term working relationships with those contractors who demonstrate they are the best mystery shoppers and auditors in the business.

- Never a registration fee
- Project specific training provided
- Opportunities for growth through inclusion in more challenging assignments
- Shopper Support via e-mail and phone
At Insula Research our goal is to develop a relationship with a nationwide network of the very best mystery shoppers and auditors in the industry. As such, we take pride in being selective about the shoppers and auditors we work with. We provide superior guidance to our clients through sophisticated research analysis with the reliable and accurate field data we rely on you to collect. In order to sustain our standards, we are dedicated to ensuring that we only contract with those who are prepared to meet our expectations for quality and timeliness. All work that is submitted is reviewed and graded by our staff, from quality of data entry to accuracy of the information contained within the report. Continued timeliness and high quality can result in ‘preferred shopper’ status, which can lead to even more benefits to being a shopper for Insula Research.”

When you mystery shop and/or audit for Insula Research, you are part of an entire team responsible for delivering the highest quality results to our clients. The process to deliver superior quality starts with using only the best shoppers and auditors in the business. We blend your skills with expert methodology; internal QA processes, analysis and interpretation of results to help our clients gain the competitive advantage they need to maximize the value of their mystery shop or audit program investment.

"What is the difference between a shopper and an auditor?"
Shoppers: A mystery shop can be phone-based, Internet-based, or an on-site anonymous evaluation of service and conditions, typically within a retail environment. Mystery shop programs often require a large number of 'shoppers' who perform a relatively limited number of store visits per program. This system helps the shoppers maintain anonymity and allows the client to gain a broader range of perceptions regarding different service levels. A mystery shop form generally includes several customer service and cleanliness-based questions regarding your experience as 'the customer'. To be a successful shopper you must have strong organizational skills, a keen eye for observation, and the ability to accurately communicate your experience through your responses.

Auditors: An audit also involves on-site data collection, but the auditor is often revealed during the store visit. As an auditor you must dress professionally, be comfortable interacting on a professional level with managers, district managers or business owners, and have the ability to comprehend and execute complex data collection processes. Audits may require some specialized skills. Some audits may require special licenses (such as a Private Investigator's license). Most audits will require you to use equipment such as digital scales, thermometers and digital cameras. Audits often require you to collect information behind the scenes, such as in the backroom or in the production areas not typically accessible to customers. For several reasons auditors generally handle a larger geographic territory than a typical mystery shopper. Audit programs often involve a significant amount of expertise, so auditors may be asked to travel outside of their immediate area. Many auditors also continue to mystery shop as well.

As an auditor for Insula Research, you will be expected to conduct yourself in a professional manner at all times. The importance of your job as an auditor is apparent with the first audit you do. Many auditors express how rewarding it is to be involved in high profile projects, some of which have media coverage associated with them. Audit work is not necessarily for everyone - it is demanding and you are held to a very high standard. If you desire more intellectual challenges and personal rewards out of your business than you may get as an exclusive mystery shopper, auditing may be right for you. On your application, be sure to express your desire to be considered for audit projects and communicate why you believe you would make a great auditor. As we work with you, let your project manager know that you would like to be considered for audit work, so he/she can be sure that you are considered as openings become available in your area.

Reliability: Many programs have incentives and bonus implications for our clients. 100% on time completion is vital to the ongoing success of the program. As such, you must only accept shops or audits that you know you can complete within the time allowed. We have to uphold a zero tolerance policy for shoppers who do not complete assignments. When you accept a shop, do not procrastinate - it is imperative to get it done in a timely manner. In the rare instance that a legitimate emergency occurs that will prohibit you from fulfilling your commitment to Insula, you must notify your scheduler, field operations manager, or project manager immediately. If you can call us being prepared with solutions, that is even better (e.g. "We had an auto accident last night so I may not be able to complete this shop I accepted for next Saturday, but my mother also shops and said that she could do it...").

Timeliness: Unless otherwise directed, all shops must be accurately and completely submitted to Insula within 24 hours of when it was shopped or audited. Most shops will be submitted via an on-line data entry website. The specific instructions on how to submit a report will be included on the specifications for that particular project. It is your responsibility to ensure that you can access the site and can input the data at the end of each workday.

Integrity: Falsifying reports is not tolerated and is cause for immediate termination of our business relationship. Similarly, any and all client equipment and/or incentive items that you have been entrusted with must be returned promptly upon completion of your assignment, or at our request. If you have unreturned incentive items in your possession we cannot release your paycheck until those incentive items are returned to our office.

NDA: "Why am I required to sign a non-disclosure agreement to shop for Insula?"
We work hard to help our clients become more successful in their industry. As a shopper or auditor you are an important component to our client's operational strategy. In many cases, to complete your assignments you will be provided with sensitive and confidential client information regarding policies and procedures. It is imperative to our client's ability to maintain a competitive advantage in their market for this information to remain confidential. Client forms, processes, shop or audit programs, and contact information are not to be discussed with anyone outside of this organization or the client company as directed. This confidentiality requirement includes all aspects of your relationship with us, and is not negotiable.

Pay policy: Insula Research pays shoppers and auditors via PayPal on the 15th of each month for all work submitted during the prior month.
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