Our privacy policy:

This policy (together with our Terms of use and Cookie policy) and any other documents we refer to in this policy or our Terms of use, including the Market Research Society Code of Conduct, set out how we will use your personal information and who it will be shared with. Please read the following carefully. Any changes we may make to our privacy policy in the future will be posted on this page.

Who we are and how you can contact us

Research by Design Limited (RbD) is an independent market research company. Our registered office is at Suite 2a, Blackthorn House, St. Paul's Square, Birmingham, B3 1RL. 

RbD is registered in England and Wales under registration number 03073350. We are registered with the ICO under registration Z5405593.

You can contact us about issues relating to personal data, including the contents of this policy, by any of the following methods:

Post: Suite 2a, Blackthorn House, St. Paul's Square, Birmingham, B3 1RL

Email: info@researchbydesign.co.uk

Telephone: 0121 643 9090

Your privacy is important to us. We take great care to preserve your privacy and and protect the personal data used in our processing activities. This Privacy Policy describes how we collect, use and share information, and what choices you have with respect to any information we may hold about you.

We are committed to meeting the requirements of the following laws and codes:

  • The EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
  • Data Protection Act 1998 and the new Data Protection Bill 2017
  • Market Research Society’s (MRS) Code of Conduct
  • ICC/ESOMAR (European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research) International Code on Market and Social Research.

Any information supplied to RbD for market research or statistical purposes is used solely for that purpose; it is not used for sales purposes.

What personal data we process in market research activities

During the course of a market research study we may process the following information about you:

  • Name and contact details, e.g. telephone number, email address, postal address
  • Other demographic information such as age, gender, ethnicity, job title
  • Membership of professional bodies, trade associations, trade unions, etc
  • Usage of products and services
  • Your opinions
  • Bank details (if your incentive is paid with BACS)
  • Audio and video recordings of the interview or discussion
  • We may also collect your IP address and which type of web browser you are using if you participate in an online market research survey.

How personal data is collected

RbD may collect Personal Data in a number of ways, including from:

  • One of our clients, with whom you are a member or customer, or have had contact with in the past. In this case, you will either have agreed to this when you gave them your contact details or they should have informed you and sought your consent that your information may be passed to a third-party research company. Information is provided to us under our client’s legitimate interests to conduct the research. RbD acts as a Data Processor and the client retains all rights as the Data Controller. RbD only processes personal data following instructions from the client, which is typically to conduct research, though this may also include updating their records, with your expressed consent.
  • A research panel that you have signed up to and consented for your personal information to be used for invitations to future market research studies.
  • One of our third-party partners who has invited you to participate in market research.
  • Information that is publicly available.
  • A direct approach from a member of RbD staff.
  • A direct approach by yourself to RbD.

Non-personal information we collect

The only information we may collect that is non-personal information is through the use of Cookies, web beacons or similar analytics-driven technologies.

As is true of most digital services, we gather certain information automatically and store it in log files. This information includes internet protocol (IP) addresses, browser type, internet service provider (ISP), referring/exit pages, operating system, date/time stamp, and clickstream data. We also collect usage data about you whenever you interact with our services. This may include which webpages you visit, what you click on, when you performed those actions, and so on. Additionally, like most digital services today, we keep digital log files that record data each time a device accesses our servers. The log files contain data about the nature of each access. We collect data from the device and application you use to access our services, such as your IP address, browser type, internet service provider (ISP), referring/exit pages, operating system, date/time stamp, and clickstream data. We may also infer your geographic location based on your IP address. If you arrive at a Research by Design service from an external source (such as a link on another website or contained in an email), we may use this information, which does not identify individual users, to analyse trends, administer the site, track users, and gather demographic information about our user base as a whole.

We may use "cookies" to collect the information referred to and track your use of our site. A cookie is a text file containing a small amount of information that is sent to your browser when you visit a website. The cookie is then sent back to the originating website on each subsequent visit, or to another website that recognises it. Cookies are an extremely useful technology and do lots of different jobs. We use various types of cookies (including some that we place and others which we permit third parties to place on our site) for a number of purposes. The information collected by Cookies allows us to monitor how many people are using our services and their interactions with other services, how many people open our e-mails, and determine for what purposes these actions are being taken. Cookies are also used to facilitate a user's log-in, as navigation aids, and as session timers, and to restrict underage use of Research by Design tools and services. We also use Cookies to match non-personally identifiable information to third-party databases to create anonymized marketing profiles that could result in you seeing customized advertising or content when browsing the internet. We do not link non-personal information from Cookies to personally identifiable information without permission, and we do not use Cookies to collect or store personally identifiable information. If for any reason you do not want us to track your use of our site using cookies, you can opt out of this using your browser settings (for more information please refer to your browser). Most browsers offer instructions on how to reset the browser to reject Cookies in the "Help" section of the toolbar. For more information about "cookies", why we use them and how to refuse cookies, please see our Cookie Policy.

We also may use web beacons to collect non-personal information about the use of our services. The information collected by web beacons allows us to monitor how many people are using our services, how many people open our e-mails, and determine for what purposes these actions are being taken. Our web beacons are not used to track activity outside of our services. We do not link non-personal information from web beacons to personally identifiable information without permission and do not use web beacons to collect or store personally identifiable Information.

How personal data is used

Your personal data is used by us to support our market research activities, including:

  • Contacting you to invite you to participate in a market research survey or consultation and, where appropriate, provide attendance details
  • Undertaking quality assurance checks on the professionalism of our staff and partners and to verify the accuracy of our data collection
  • Analysing your research responses, which may be recorded as either audio, video or text files. Where audio or video recordings are made, you will be asked for your explicit consent. The purpose of the recording is to aid analysis of the findings of the interview. 
  • Providing incentive payments or prize draw winnings as a consequence of participating in research
  • Reporting back to our clients; data is aggregated and anonymised. Personally identifiable data is not disclosed unless prior permission has been expressly given.

We may use the personal information of potential, existing and past clients to enable us to supply services and information that they may have a legitimate interest in, such as a newsletter, or other similar information. We will also use personal information to administer, support and improve the services we offer, predict what might be of interest, and contact you for your views on our services and for any other purposes consistent with the proper performance of our operations and business.

We may monitor your use of our site and record your email address and/or IP address, operating system and browser type, for system administration. This is statistical information about our users’ browsing actions and patterns and does not identify any individual.

We only keep your information for as long as is necessary.

Who has access to personal data

We may share your information with any companies in our group and other branches of Research by Design for internal reporting purposes.

RbD typically processes data internally. However, it is possible that during the course of a research programme your personal information may be shared with the following types of partners:

  • Fieldwork recruiters (who will invite you to participate in research on our behalf)
  • Fieldwork agencies (who may conduct interviews on our behalf)
  • Research viewing facilities (who provide rooms, recording facilities and coordination services for our interviews)
  • Online platforms (which we use to host online research activities)
  • Video streaming partners (if we conduct any live streaming of any face-to-face interviews)
  • Our clients (only if you are aware of this and have provided explicit consent)
  • Transcribers (who may transcribe recordings)
  • Email broadcasting service (which we may use to distribute research invites or send service and marketing emails)
  • Printing companies (where we want to send personalised direct mail or surveys)
  • Cameramen and video editors (who may perform editing activities on our behalf)
  • Law enforcement (only if required to do so) if we have to share your information to comply with legal or regulatory requirements (or we reasonably believe that we need to disclose your information for such purposes), or if we have to enforce or apply our Terms and Conditions of Use or any other terms and conditions or agreements or to protect our rights, property or our customers etc.
  • If we sell or buy any business or assets, (as we may share your data with the prospective seller or buyer);
  • If we or substantially all of our company assets are acquired by another party, in which case your information will be one of the transferred assets.

Other than as listed above, we will not rent, sell or otherwise disclose your information without your consent.

Please bear in mind that whenever you voluntarily disclose personal data online - for example on message boards, on a blog or chat area - that information will be viewed by others.

All third-party partners are contractually obliged to use personal data for research and statistical purposes only and to safeguard them from unauthorised disclosure or modification. They are also contractually obliged to delete your information in line with an agreed retention period.

How long personal data is kept

Unless a longer retention period is required by our client, or by law, we will only hold your personal information on our systems for the period necessary to fulfil the purposes outlined in this Privacy Policy or until you request it is deleted.

Most personal information held about you by us in order to conduct our market research activities will be retained for 3 months after the completion of the work. This is to ensure we can respond to any validation requests from our clients or otherwise complete the provision of our services to our clients.

How personal data is secured

If you have completed an online survey, your information will initially be stored on the online platform’s encrypted server. At the point of analysis it will be downloaded onto our encrypted server at our Birmingham offices, along with personal data collected from other sources. All data on our server is backed-up onto an encrypted cloud-based server; the backup software runs automatically three times daily, capturing incremental file changes. 

We keep your information secure by taking appropriate technical and organisational measures against its unauthorised or unlawful processing and against its accidental loss, alteration, destruction, disclosure or damage.

Any payment transactions will be made via BACS or PayPal or other secure payment method.

If you have a username, password or other login details which enable you to access certain parts of our site, you must not allow any other person to use them and must treat them as confidential. If you believe or suspect that someone else knows your login details you must contact us at info@researchbydesign.co.uk as soon as possible. Please also see our Terms of Use.

Unfortunately, the transmission of information via the internet is not completely secure. Although we will apply our normal procedures and comply with legal requirements to protect your information, we cannot guarantee the security of your information transmitted to our site and any transmission is at your own risk. Once we have received your information, we will use strict procedures and security features to try to prevent unauthorised access.

Our site may from time to time contain links to and from other websites. If you follow a link to any of those sites, please note that those sites ought to have their own privacy policies and that we do not accept any responsibility or liability for those sites or for their privacy policies. Please check those privacy policies before you submit your information to those sites. Please also see our Terms and Conditions of Use for further provisions relating to other websites.

We do not store or transfer any personal information outside the European Economic Area. Your personal information is stored and processed on secure servers hosted inside the United Kingdom.

Other, non-personal information may be stored, processed and transferred anywhere in the world.

Your rights

At any point while we are in possession of or processing your personal data, you have the following rights:

  • Right to be informed: you have the right to be informed about the collection and use of your personal data
  • Right of access: you have the right to request a copy of the information that we hold about you.
  • Right of rectification: you have the right to correct data that we hold about you that is inaccurate or incomplete.
  • Right to erasure: in certain circumstances you have the right to be forgotten and to have the data we hold about you erased from our records.
  • Right to restrict processing: you have the right to restrict or suppress the processing of your personal data in certain circumstances.
  • Right to data portability: you have the right to obtain and reuse your personal data for your own purposes, and therefore to receive it in a portable format
  • Right to object: you have the right to object to the processing of your personal data in certain circumstances.
  • Rights in relation to automated decision making and profiling 
  • Right to judicial review: in the event that we refuse your request under rights of access, we will provide you with a reason as to why. You have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO). Information on your rights can be found on the ICO’s website.

You have the right to access, amend or have your personal information destroyed, and you should direct any request for your information to us at info@researchbydesign.co.uk with details of your request and sufficient information to help us identify any records we may hold about you.

Use of RbD’s website - www.researchbydesign.co.uk

If you visit our website then we may collect and process your personal data if you decide to actively communicate with us and if you subscribe to our newsletters or other services. For statistical analysis and website operational requirements, we may also collect and process technical data when you visit and navigate our website. This may include log files, IP address details, Internet browser and operating system, web tracking data (such as referral URLs), time and date stamps and data for Google Analytics. This helps us understand who has visited which pages to determine the most popular areas of the website.

Cookie policy

A cookie is a small data file that is placed on your computer or other device to allow a website to recognise you as a user when you return to the website using the same computer and web browser, either for the duration of your visit (using a ‘session cookie’) or for repeat visits (a ‘persistent cookie’). Other similar files work in the same way and we use the word ‘cookie’ in this policy to refer to all files that collect information in this way.

We will not use cookies to collect personally identifiable information about you.

Cookies are an extremely common technology for remembering certain information about a visitor to a website. The vast majority of websites currently make use of cookies and they are commonly used for a wide range of tasks. We use cookies for the following purposes:

  • as necessary for website operation, for example to enable you to login to your account or place an order;
  • to analyse the use of the Site by, for example, recognising and counting the number of visitors and how they move around the Site. This helps us to see what parts of the site are popular and which sections need improving to make the experience better for users;
  • to recognise you when you return to the Site so that content can be personalised for you, for example, by remembering your country and site preferences;
  • to record your visit to the Site and the pages you have visited and links you have followed. We will use this to make the Site more relevant to your interests;
  • to monitor, and permit third parties to monitor the effectiveness of advertising campaigns; and
  • to enable us, and third parties, to create target segments for advertising purposes.

If you wish to restrict or block the cookies which are set by this Site (or, indeed, on any other site) you can do this through your browser settings. The ‘Help’ function within your browser should tell you how.

Alternatively, you may wish to visit http://www.allaboutcookies.org/ which contains comprehensive information on how to do this on a wide variety of browsers. You will also find details on how to delete cookies from your computer, as well as more general information about cookies. Please note that, as these websites are not owned or operated by Research by Design, we are not responsible for any of the content on them.

Please be aware that restricting cookies may mean that you will not be able to take full advantage of all the features or services available on this Site.

We also use and work with a number of third-party suppliers and partners who set cookies on this Site in order to deliver certain services and features. For example, we sometimes embed video content from websites such as YouTube, which set cookies on your device when you visit a page on this Site containing embedded content. We do not control the dissemination of these cookies.

Some of the emails we send to you may contain a ‘web beacon pixel’ or tracked links which allows us to identify when you have opened the email and to verify which links contained in the email you have accessed. We use this information to determine which parts of our emails are of most interest to you.

You can delete the pixel by deleting the email. If you do not wish to download the pixel to your computer or other device, you can ensure this by selecting to receive emails from us in plain text rather than HTML.

Alternatively, you can unsubscribe from our mailing list by using the unsubscribe links present in all our emails.

Policy reviews

We keep this Policy under regular review. This Policy was last updated on 3rd August 2020.

Questions, comments or requests concerning this privacy policy or data protection matters are welcomed and should be addressed to us at info@researchbydesign.co.uk or at Research by Design, Suite 2a, Blackthorn House, St. Paul's Square, Birmingham, B3 1RL