The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise recognises companies for outstanding achievement in international trade, innovation, sustainability and promoting opportunity through social mobility.
The firms who receive the award can use the emblem on their marketing and sales material for five years, fly The Queen’s Flag and receive an invitation to a royal reception.
Many winners announce their achievement in the business and trade media as well as raising their reputation further with clients and associates through social media, newsletters and their websites.
You might think the Queen’s Award is not for smaller businesses, but this year 151 of the 200 winners were SMEs (250 staff or less), with 30 having fewer than ten employees.
Completing your Queen’s Awards for Enterprise application
Keep these nuggets of advice in mind when applying for the Queen’s Awards.
There are around 200 winners each year and a few of those businesses win more than one award in any given year. If you shine in one of the four categories listed above go into it with energy and optimism.
The Queen’s Awards advises at least 50 hours being spent on applications. An entry that does your business justice needs lots of planning, time, discussion and writing.
‘The Queen’s Awards advises at least 50 hours being spent on applications’
Remember the deadline is strictly enforced to the minute and you don’t want to make a hash of your entry with a last-minute rush.
Assign communication and responsibility
The Queen’s Awards entries take a team effort. Even if you have a PR agency to help, in-house staff will still have a part to play and that all takes good team skills.
Strong award entries need evidence, indisputable facts, figures and achievements. Include vital information like turnover, partnerships and expansion plans.
It all adds up
You will need financial figures for the past three years and if these are unaudited, you’ll need them to be verified by your accountant should you get nominated. Your finance director will have a role to play.
Proofread your application
Why put in all the hard work of collecting the information and writing the entry and not check for spelling, grammar and financial accuracy?
It’s easy to make mistakes as it’s quite a lengthy entry form and you don’t want to detract from an otherwise strong entry with a few glaring and clumsy errors.
It doesn’t need to be perfect
There are some sections of the awards which will ask for info on subjects which you might have never considered or which will be of little relevance to your business such as Declaration of Corporate Responsibility or the environmental impact of your work.
The judges don’t expect smaller business to have comprehensive answers to every question for it to be a potential winner.
There is an opportunity to provide links to videos and other materials and documents of up to 5mb can be uploaded. If you have something which can add weight to your entry – especially if it is visual – use it.
If you get nominated but fall short of winning, there is nothing to stop you applying for it the following year.
The questions will remain largely the same, so they might need only a little more work. The intervening year might give you stronger material, including financial figures, to support your case.
Nominate yourself for other awards
The more awards your business enters, the more good material you will have to support your applications and the easier you will find award entries.
Nominations for the Queen’s Awards 2020 open on 1st May 2020.
Rob Baker is a PR specialist for B2B PR agency, Turquoise PR.
How entering awards can help your business grow