We are often asked by shoppers if and when it’s appropriate to bring their children to their mystery shops. We understand that many shops occur during the day and that shoppers aren’t eager to upend their entire schedule and involve childcare if they are able to conduct their shops with their children in tow.
The answer is entirely dependent on the specific shop and scenario. For some shops, children are definitely not allowed, while some you could bring them along if you chose, and some shops actually encourage or even require shoppers to bring their kids.
Shops NOT to Involve a Child
Any shops that have an older age demographic, will require you to conduct the shop in a bar or fine dining establishment, or come with a longer visit or more detailed instructions and requirements would NOT be suitable to bring a child. In other words, avoid bringing your child along to any secret shop where a child would stand out. There are some blatant situations where involving children would be not only a violation of the shop conditions but also against the law.
If you find yourself with a not-so-obvious scenario, consider how a child would affect the visit. Children can impact the service you receive and pull your attention away from the job at hand. Mystery shoppers have a code of ethics and conduct they are prompted to follow, and children can be a wild card in terms of behavior and actions.
When It MAY Be Ok to Bring a Child Along
For some quick-serve and drive-thru shops, retail store audits, or movie theater shops, there is always a chance that children may be welcome on the shop. These types of shops don’t always permit children, but there is a chance that you may be able to bring them depending on the specific scenario involved. For shops requiring less time commitment or where the shop requirements aren’t very involved, you could likely bring a child along, and it wouldn’t detract from the overall visit.
Shops Where Children Are Encouraged
There are specific shops such as retail, education, amusement park, play facilities, etc., where you may be required to have a child in order to conduct these types of shops. Some clients are interested in how their staff treat and engage with children. You can search the job board for these specific types of shops by filtering by category. You will also want to make sure your shopper profile demographics are properly set up to reflect the number of children you have and their ages so that you are notified when these shops become available.
One of the greatest benefits of being a national mystery shopper is that you fit your shops into your schedule and do them when it’s convenient for you. As each shop is different, remember that you must always review the requirements and instructions. When in doubt, confirm with your scheduler regarding the question of children or any other inquiries you may have about a shop so that you can prepare accordingly.
If you’re looking for mystery shopping opportunities nationwide, get in touch with 360 Relay today!