Award Categories

Charity of the Year

This award is open to all registered charities who have achieved business success but whose primary aims are non-profit making. Judges will want to see clear evidence of commercial awareness and innovative strategies that complement the altruistic aims of the organisation. Profitability will be a factor, as will measurable success in achieving its goals and in building strong links to businesses and the local community.  
  1. Outline the development and growth of your business, briefly detailing its products/services, its markets/customers.
  2. Give evidence to show the success of the business, including details of financial growth and stability
  3. Demonstrate how strategies have identified opportunities for growth and how innovations have accessed new markets, developed new products or services or increased profitability.

Professional Services Award

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This award will look at businesses that demonstrate excellence in the professional services sector, that can show evidence of strong financial performance, excellent customer services and can identify what sets them apart from their competitors.Open to organisations of any size, entries are encouraged from those that can demonstrate their accomplishments are creating value in any aspect of their practice matters. There is no definitive list of occupations, but examples include accountants, architect,dentists, engineering, healthcare, law, IT, investment and finance and training
  1. Describe your business and how it stands out from others in the sector.
  2. Give details of your growth and stability to date since your business started
  3. Professional services rise or fall on the people their recruit and retain. Provide details of how you ensure you get - and hang onto - the right staff and their effectiveness.
  4. Outline your plans for future sustainability, innovation and growth
We will also need figures for your revenue growth, turnover and profit for 2017/2018

Leisure & Lifestyle Award

Open to any restaurant, hotel, café, pub, leisure facility, visitor attraction or similar business. We are looking for an organisation in this sector that excels in their field.
  1.       Show evidence of how the business provides excellent customer engagement (this can be supported by testimonials)
  2.       Explain the effective ways you promote your business to your target audience
  3.       Detail how your business has created employment in the area

Community Contribution

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Businesses form a crucial part of our communities and many are helping to put something back into society. This award calls for businesses that show commitment to corporate social responsibility by improving the lives of local people. This could be through new practices developed as part of the every day running of the business, or activities that support the community outside work. Judges will look at businesses who can demonstrate that they have contributed substantially to the community, including through society-led projects, volunteering or fund-raising.
  1.       Show details of your policies or specific activities that have benefited the community.
  2.       Explain what impact they have had on the community and provide examples
  3.       Explain the benefits these policies/activities have brought to the business and/or employees.

Small Business of the Year

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Open to organisations with 15 or less staff. Judges will be interested in the ethos and background to the business, its profitability and the unique selling points, which make it a success. as well as what difference it has made in its sector since it started trading and how it has overcome any challenges it has encountered. They will also be looking at future projections and plans for the company. Please provide the date that the business was established.  
  1.       Describe the vision for your business and what differentiates you from your competitors
  2.       Give evidence of your stable financial position
  3.       Demonstrate how the effectively meet the needs of customers
  4.    What plans do you have for the business in both the long and the short term and how do you see your business developing?

New Business of the Year

Open to all businesses that have been operational for less than 3 years* and have been successful in identifying a market gap to launch a new business. Nominees should showcase how innovation, product development, market knowledge and effective leadership have played a part in their growth to date and plans for future expansion.
  1.       Describe how your business start-up was achieved
  2.       Give details of your growth and stability to date since your business started
  3.       Show that you have a sound understanding of the market and your competitors
  4.       Explain about your sustainable vision for the future
We will also need figures for your revenue growth, turnover and profit for 2017/2018 *At the time of the award ceremony  

Business Person of the Year

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Open to any individual that has affected the business in a positive way.
  1.       Explain how this person has the company’s ethos at heart
  2.       Show how this person has exceptional drive to succeed and the ability to overcome obstacles
  3.       Tell us about how this person has been key to the success of the business

Customer Service Award

This award will go to the organisation that can best demonstrate that it has the customer at the heart of the business.
  1.       Show evidence of how your business effectively meets customer’s needs in order to stay ahead of the competition.
  2.       Explain how you measure your customer service
  3.       Demonstrate how you feel your business provides exceptional customer service

People Development Award

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The judges are looking for businesses who invest in their employees providing them with training and development initiatives to benefit their overall performance.
  1.       Detail the training strategies in place to support the learning and development of staff
  2.       Explain the benefits that this training offers to the workforce
  3.       Describe how investing in learning and development for your staff contributes to the success of the business, either financially or through improved customer service

Apprentice of the Year

With close to a million active Apprenticeships across England alone, apprenticeship schemes have fast become a preferred route to employment for thousands of school leavers. This award recognises an apprentice who has excelled in their training and goes above and beyond for the benefit of both their business and their future career. The apprentice of the year award should be completed by either the apprentice or their employer.  Apprentices will be enrolled on an apprenticeship scheme within the districts of Derbyshire as of March 2018
  1.       Judges will be looking for the contribution that the individual has made throughout their apprenticeship showing their commitment and attitude to the role.
  2.       Entries should show evidence of outstanding achievement through the quality of work carried out and the value they have added to the company through use of initiative.
  3.       We would also like to hear about the personal development since taking on their new role and how the scheme has benefited the individual.

Independent Retailer of the Year

Focuses on independent retailers both online and shop facing retailers, that excel in their field.
  1.       Describe the products that you offer and your general customer base
  2.       How have you embraced technology and social media within your business?
  3.       Give evidence of growth and financial stability
  4.       Explain how you maintain and build a loyal customer base and stay ahead of competition to keep customers coming back
  We will also need figures for your revenue growth, turnover and profit for 2017/2018

Excellence in Manufacturing Award

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This award will be presented to the company that demonstrates a modern, efficient and innovative approach to manufacturing.
  1.       Explain your business’s commitment to the excellence and development of your products
  2.       Tell us about your track record for training and passing on skills to future generations in the industry
  3.       How does your business promote the region as a centre for manufacturing excellence?
  4.       Provide details of the impact on your business if you trade and/or export internationally, how you have adapted to tackle new markets overseas.

Innovation Award

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The winning business will have created a new product, process or service
  1.       Give a brief description of your innovative product or service (up to 100 words).
  2.       Explain how your business identified a need for this new product/service. Show how you carried out your research and development of the idea.
  3.       Provide evidence of how your new innovative idea has benefitted your business to create competitive advantage. This can be through increased productivity, cost saving or development of the brand etc.

Lifetime Achievement Award

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The judges are looking for an individual who has had a major impact on their business and the area over a number of years. If there is someone we should consider for this award, please provide a name and brief overview of their achievements for them to be a contender.

2019 Business of the Year

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This award is the ultimate accolade for all our entrants and the winner will be chosen from each of the category winners. The judges will be looking for the company/person who has shown the most enterprise, passion and drive in taking their business forward. Dedication and innovation will be key to the winner of this most prestigious award.