MSPA Membership Criteria
- Company has been in business, conducting mystery shopping for client companies, for at least two years OR
- Company has been in business for less than two years BUT a company principal was employed by another MSPA member company for at least two years OR
- Company has been in business for less than two years or for at least two years but does not meet the full membership criteria listed below, is willing to join as a Candidate Member and accept the membership restrictions and additional criteria of: 1) no voting rights; 2) will only use the Candidate MSPA member logo; 3) willing to commit to attend a MSPA Annual Conference or workshop event within the first year of membership; 4) will not have a listing on the MSPA website until full regular membership is reached; and 5) agreeing that MSPA may revoke its membership if, in MSPA's sole discretion, the company's actions are contrary to the tenets upon which MSPA is based AND;
- Company has a reputation among its clients for conducting itself in a professional manner. Reputation shall be subject to verification through checking up 1) for Full Members up to six client references 2) for Candidate and Associate Members up to three client references, who have done business with the company during the past years, the names and contact details for which shall be supplied by applicant to MSPA at MSPA's request, AND;
- Company attests that it has not, for at least the last two years, conducted itself in a manner contrary to the MSPA Code of Professional Ethics, AND;
- Company agrees to adhere to the Mystery Shopping Professionals Association's Code of Professional Standards as follows:
Commit to the purposes of the association:
- Improving service and promoting excellence in the mystery shopping industry; Conduct mystery shopping services in an honest and ethical manner;
- Conduct mystery shopping services according to industry procedures and regulations set forth and agreed to by MSPA members;
- Instill confidence in mystery shopping and encourage public cooperation;
- Instill confidence in the business community that mystery shopping is performed in a professional and fair manner;
Respect our clients, their employees, our employees, fellow MSPA members, and the general public, AND;
- Company agrees to abide by the Rules of Ethical Conduct, wherein it agrees that it will not
- Falsify or misrepresent reports;
- Mislead shopper applicants about actual job opportunities regarding mystery shopping;
- Ask or encourage anyone to break confidentiality agreements with other firms for whom they conduct mystery shopping assignments;
- Use any MSPA media to publish complaints against shoppers, vendors, clients, or other mystery shopper providers;
- Refuse to pay, or make a deduction from a shopper's pay, for failure to perform any function which was not explicitly described in written instructions;
- Refuse to pay, or make a deduction from a shopper's pay, for failure to receive payment from a client for which a shopper has conducted one or more shops.
The name of the Company and the Company's promotional materials do not reflect negatively on the reputation and image of the industry as an open and legitimate forum for measuring customer service against established standards of service as set forth by companies that engage mystery shopping companies. If the company is notified that MSPA believes the company name and/or the company's promotional materials would reflect negatively on the reputation and image of the industry, MSPA will inform the company; if the company opts to change its name and/or marketing materials to something that is not offensive to the industry, MSPA membership will be granted, provided all other criteria are met. MSPA reserves the right to refuse membership to any applicant that does not meet this criterion and that refuses to correct the issue to MSPA's satisfaction.
- Company will not charge individuals to become shoppers or to gain access to shopping opportunities.
- The company agrees to provide, and actually does provide, the name of all of its owners on its application for membership.
- The company acknowledges that MSPA will share the fact that the company has made application for membership with its members and will invite members to comment on the company's reputation and business practices.
- The company accepts the MSPA membership application process and waives any claims against MSPA, its officers, its directors, staff, and contractors in connection with a denial of membership, including for defamation, unless such defamation was knowingly and willfully dishonest.
Candidate Membership Criteria in addition to those listed above:
- Ability to provide 3 client references
- Must attend an MSPA Annual Conference within the first year of membership
- Must agree that it will not have access to membership profile nor to banner ads until it has achieved the Full Membership criteria & status
- Must not use the regular MSPA logo but is allowed to use the Candidate Member logo to communicate that the company has Candidate Status with MSPA
- Must agree that MSPA may revoke its membership if, in MSPA's sole discretion, the company's actions are contrary to the tenets upon which MSPA is based.
- No Member Voting Rights
Associate Membership Criteria:
Membership for companies or individuals who are not providers but are professionals involved in business as a subcontractor, consultancy, technology vendor, training company, HR provider, or other supporting trade company. Typically vendors who cooperate with or sell products/services to MSPA Mystery Shopping Company members. Associate members receive many of the benefits as Regular members, however do not have a voting right within the association or can obtain a function within the MSPA Board of Directors.
- Ability to provide 3 trading references
- A reputation for excellence in operational delivery
- Agreement to abide by and to apply the MSPA Code of Professional Ethics
- Agreement to abide by and to apply the MSPA Code of Professional Standards
- Ability to present a official proof of business existence (i.e. articles of incorporation, insurance records, or business license)
- No Member Voting Rights
Each member company will be asked to sign an ethics and standards agreement each year. This ethics and standards agreement will be developed by the Professional Ethics and Standards Committee. If you wish to have a second location or individual receive MSPA mailings and have a listing in the resource directory, please photocopy this application and complete it with the primary company's application. Primary application must be submitted with the additional application.