Time is running out for firms large and small to sign up for this year’s prestigious Doncaster Chamber Business Awards.
Bosses will have to get their skates on - for the closing date for this year’s ceremony, run in conjunction with the Doncaster Free Press, is on Monday.
Entries for the 2014 ceremony, hosted by BBC Breakfast host Louise Minchin, close at 5pm - and firms are being urged to make sure they get their entry in on time.
The awards have been the highlight of the Doncaster business calendar for the last 16 years, and the 14 categories are open to businesses of all sizes and sectors.
Phil Harris, CEO of Doncaster Chamber, said: “The Doncaster Business Awards provide a great opportunity to recognise business excellence, to inspire others and to gain recognition publically for the work achieved by businesses and their employees.
“Doncaster is home to outstanding businesses and I strongly urge companies to not be modest about their achievements, but use the awards as an opportunity to gain the recognition that they – and their employees – deserve.”
The 14 categories are free to enter and open to all Doncaster Chamber members and businesses with a DN postcode.
Businesses may enter as many of the awards categories that they wish to.
There are also several sponsorship opportunities for businesses available, from sponsorship of an award category, to entertainment or drinks packages.
This year’s sponsors include Doncaster College, Keepmoat Limited, Polypipe, Utilitywise and Urban Bar and Lounge.
Call 01302 640132 or email email@example.com for more information.
The awards event take place on Thursday 11 December at The Doncaster Racecourse.
Tickets are priced at £55+VAT per ticket or £500+VAT for a table of ten and includes a four course meal, drinks and canapés on arrival, entertainment throughout the evening including a live band and DJ, as well as the awards ceremony itself.
Tickets are available online at www.doncaster-chamber.co.uk or by calling 01302 640100 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org
The full list of categories is as follows:
EXCELLENCE IN CUSTOMER SERVICE
Presented to a business that demonstrates they truly have the customer at the very heart of their business. Judging criteria includes customer service standards and strategy, business performance, customer care, and how customer service has driven business growth.
EXCELLENCE IN MARKETING and COMMUNICATIONS
This award will be presented to the company that demonstrates innovative communications and marketing campaigns to reach its target customer base with demonstrable results for its business.
Criteria includes evidence of clear objectives and how they are measured; evidence of how brand awareness has increased; mechanisms to convert activities into commercial sales; and how communications have contributed to business success.
EXCELLENCE IN CORPORATE, SOCIAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL RESPONSIBILITY
Presented to the organisation which has a clear and demonstrable strategy for their efforts and achievements in corporate, social and environmental responsibility.
Criteria and judging will be based on the benefits received by the company, customers, communities and the environment, and the on-going sustainability of the business’ efforts.
EXCELLENCE IN OVERSEAS TRADE
This award will go to a company who has expanded into new geographic markets outside the UK in the past two years.
The award will take into consideration the company’s strategy behind moving into new international markets, sales achieved, any new product development, and innovative approaches to international sales.
EXCELLENCE IN PEOPLE DEVELOPMENT AND TRAINING
This award will be presented to the company which demonstrates efforts and results from investing in their staff development to support the business and its growth.
Judging criteria will include evidence of access to development opportunities, including apprenticeships, offered to staff and how staff are able to progress.
SUCCESS THROUGH PARTNERSHIP WORKING - SPONSORED BY KEEPMOAT LIMITED
Recognises the combined ability of partner organisations to seek out and develop partnerships that move beyond normal commercial relationships to deliver real added value to all partners, customers and other stakeholders.
SUCCESS THROUGH INNOVATION AND DIVERSIFICATION
Recognises firms that have identified new ways to stay ahead of the competition.
This award will go to a company that has been innovative in its approach to business in these challenging times and that has achieved success through diversification into new products or markets.
BUSINESS PERSON OF THE YEAR - 35 AND UNDER/36 AND OVER
These awards are for outstanding individuals who have been instrumental in the success of a business through exceptional vision and effective leadership.
It will take into consideration market awareness, business growth, vision for the future of the business, strong commercial performance and financial results.
BUSINESS START UP OF THE YEAR (UNDER TWO YEARS TRADING BY DECEMBER 2014) - SPONSORED BY DONCASTER COLLEGE
This award will go to an organisation that is based in Doncaster and has received support via the Business Doncaster programme.
The organisation must be able to demonstrate continued growth since start-up whilst meeting and overcoming challenges.
It will take into consideration market awareness, vision for the future of the business, strong commercial performance and financial results.
THIRD SECTOR BUSINESS OR ORGANISATION OF THE YEAR
This award will go to a third sector business or organisation that the judges believe has been clear in its goals and strategy, effectively promoted its cause and beneficiaries and demonstrated excellent customer service whilst simultaneously showing growth and sustainability as an organisation since inception.
SMALL, MEDIUM AND LARGE BUSINESS OF THE YEAR (Small - 1-10 employees or turnover £1 million or less); Medium - 11-50 employees or turnover £5 million or less; large 51+ employees.
The Business of the Year Awards will be given to the companies that demonstrate all-round excellence in business.
The judging will focus on financial performance and future objectives, the competitive advantage of the business, a commitment to customer service, and will look at examples of specific strategies which have driven business growth.
LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
The deadline for nominations for the Lifetime Achievement Award has already passed.
Enter via the Doncaster Chamber website: www.doncaster-chamber.co.uk by completing an entry form which follows a question and answer format for each award (maximum 1,800 words).
Only when entrants reach the second stage will the questioning become more thorough, with an interview with the judging panel.
Entrants exceeding the word limit will be disqualified.
Entrants may not, at the initial stages, provide any supplementary information.
Initial sifting and scoring of the awards entries will be undertaken by an expert Business Awards Panel.
The panel will have responsibility for finalising up to six finalists per award category.
This will ensure parity across the awards categories.
The Business Awards Panel will be responsible for 25 per cent of the overall score with the remainder coming from the interview stage.
Entries will be judged secondly in an interview with the award sponsor as the primary judge alongside a Doncaster Chamber representative.
Awards entrants will be asked to present for five to 10 minutes at the start of the interview to allow judges to understand the business.
Final scores from both the panel and interviews will be added together to determine the winner and runner-up in each of the categories.
The finalists will be announced on October 2.