Privacy Information Notice: IfATE ‘The Big Conversation’

How We Protect Your Data

This Privacy Information Notice tells you more about how your data will be used and stored.

Data protection legislation and personal data

Data protection legislation determines how, when, and why any organisation can process personal data. ‘Personal data’ means any information which can identify someone. ‘Processing’ means any actions performed on personal data, including: collection, storage, alteration or deletion. These laws exist to ensure that your data are managed safely and used responsibly. They also provide you with certain rights in respect of your data and creates a responsibility on the Institute for Employment Studies (IES) as data controller to provide you with certain information.

This privacy notice sets out the legal basis for processing data in relation to this research project, which has been commissioned by the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IfATE) and is being conducted on their behalf by IES. This includes who will have access to your personal data, how your data will be used, stored and deleted, your legal rights and who you can contact with a query or a complaint.

The legal basis for processing personal data

This legal justification applies to this research project is public task, as it will support IfATE’s development of the national skills system. The study will involve research involving interviews and focus groups with employers engaged and not yet engaged with IfATE to collect views on what is working well in the skills system and if there is anything that needs to change in the skills system.

To arrange these interviews, your name and contact details (phone number, address, and email address) have been shared with the IES research teams by IfATE and Qa research. This personal information will only be processed for the purposes of completing this research, under the direction of IES.

Participation in the research is completely voluntary – just because you are contacted, does not mean that you have to take part and you can decline the invitation without having to give a reason.

Your personal data collected in this research project will only be used for research. IES will treat the data they hold with respect, keeping them secure and confidential. In conducting this research on behalf of IES, IES are required to comply with Data Protection legislation and may only process your personal information under the direction of IES and for the purposes set out in this research only.

Who will have access to my personal data?

Your contact details will be stored on an encrypted server, with access restricted solely to members of IES’ research teams. Even after these contact details have been shared with the research team, you are still free to withdraw from the research and can decline to take part in an interview without having to give a reason.

If you agree to take part in a research interview, any information you provide will be summarised in an anonymised format – this means we will remove any information that could be used to identify you.

How will my data be treated?

If you are invited and choose to take part in an interview, the information you give will only be used for the purposes of this study. The research findings will be shared with IfATE. It will directly inform a report that IES will produce for IfATE.

Individuals will not be named in the findings IES will share with IfATE, or will any information be included that could reveal their identity.

We may ask if yourself or you organisation would consider being named if the research team identifies a good practice example that could be shared within the final report as a case study. This will require special consent and you will be free to decline this invitation as outlined in the Information Sheet.

The period for which personal data will be stored

Data protection law requires that personal data are kept for no longer than is necessary. We only continue to hold personal data where they are still used to carry out research in the public interest.  We will anonymise the information you provide as soon as we practically can (i.e. within 2 weeks of the focus group date). The personal data we may have used to contact you, as well as the audio files from interview recordings, will be securely deleted from the IES systems after this study is complete (currently estimated to be March 2023. All transcripts, handwritten notes taken during the focus group, and anonymised notes in relation to this work will be securely deleted from the IES systems by June 2023 or three months after the report is finalised.

Your rights

You have rights under data protection law to make the following requests for the personal data held about you that is being processed for this research, including:

■    To request access to this data

■    To amend any incorrect or inaccurate information

■    To restrict or object to your data being processed

■    To destroy this data

■    To move, copy or transfer your data.

You have the right to withdraw the information you have provided as part of the interviews or focus groups up to 14 days after the interview date. After this point the information will have been anonymised and will no longer be treated as personal data.

If you wish to discuss these rights, have any concerns, or want to make any requests about your personal data please contact the IES research team: Alexandra Nancarrow ( or Joy Williams (

Who can I contact if I would like to withdraw my interview data?

If you have taken part in the interview or focus group but would like your data withdrawn, please contact: Alexandra Nancarrow ( or Joy Williams (

Who can I contact with a query about how my data will be used?

If you have any questions about how your data will be used, please contact Alexandra Nancarrow (, Joy Williams (, or Kat Wingfield (

Further information on the rights available to you is also available from the Information Commissioner’s Office – the independent body responsible for regulating data protection within the UK. They can also deal with any complaints you may have regarding our use of your data:

■    Tel: 0303 123 1113

■    Email:

■    Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AF