Categories

In this category, we will be looking to recognise high-quality apprenticeship programmes that demonstrate clear alignment with the organisation's business and people strategies. Successful programmes will be integrated into organisations' wider workforce planning, provide great opportunities for learners to progress, and support efforts to increase diversity and inclusion. 

The judges will be looking for: 

• examples of higher-level apprenticeships that provide viable alternatives to university for young people. Entries highlighting partnerships between employers and education institutions will be welcomed 

• evidence of good-quality mentoring, line management and on-the-job learning are crucial, as is high-quality training in the classroom

• evidence of learner engagement and satisfaction

• value to the business in terms of retention, innovation, employee engagement and customer satisfaction.

 

This award recognises employers that have successfully delivered a major organisational change programme. As well as making demonstrable contributions to organisational performance, effective change programmes bring positive impacts to employees and/or clearly minimise the potential negative impacts.

The judges will be looking for evidence of:

• how the initiative aligned with operational strategy and the desired organisational culture

• how you diagnosed the problem and developed your understanding of the necessary change 

• how you ensured employees were properly informed and consulted, and their interests were taken on board

• how you balanced continuing day-to-day operations with the delivery of change

• the demonstrable impact on organisational performance and quality of working life

• HR’s contribution through all stages of the programme, from informing the business case to measuring the impact. 

 

While new talent-development methods are always emerging, coaching remains one of the top three approaches that deliver tangible improvement and noticeable results in organisations. And the use of coaching and mentoring programmes is growing, as, alongside established initiatives for senior staff, there is notable growth in their use by line mangers, peers, with younger employees and within communities of practices – both face-to-face, and digitally. This award recognises excellence in establishing coaching and mentoring initiatives that support business performance and success.

The judges will be looking for:

• a clear link between the coaching or mentoring strategy, business goals and development needs 

• a rationale for how coaches and mentors have been selected, supported and integrated into the programme

• creativity in using coaching approaches, such as one to one, groups, action learning sets, peers and communities of practice, developing in-house capability and in using technology

• evidence of the effectiveness in programme design, resourcing, delivery, supervision and outcomes. 

 

 

Technology has become a huge driving force and enabler of successful HR and L&D practice. In this category, we’re looking for submissions from organisations that have gained business benefits and achieved strategic objectives through the innovative use of technology or digital solutions.

The judges will be looking for:

• the achievement of strategic objectives through the innovative and appropriate use of technology/digital solutions

• what makes your initiative stand out, including what you’ve done that’s innovative

• evidence of engagement and collaboration with stakeholders and intended users

• evidence of the impact of the changes made on the business and individuals, and how this initiative facilitated these changes.

 

 

 

This award recognises employers who are genuinely dedicated to creating a diverse and inclusive workplace. The employment and development of people demands that all policies, practices and procedures are based on being inclusive and open to diversity, and regularly checked to tackle and remove unfair bias. Becoming a truly inclusive workplace requires openness, transparency and authentic behaviour, driven by a core belief in equality of opportunity. 

The judges will be looking for:

• details of the initiative your organisation has undertaken to create a diverse and inclusive workplace

• information about why action in this area is so important for your organisation

• evidence of how you are breaking ground and overcoming challenges and resistance

• proof of what makes your initiative stand out, including what you’ve done that’s innovative 

• evidence that the changes you have made have brought benefits to your people and the business.

 

Best employee engagement initiative

An employee engagement programme can deliver a win-win outcome for the business and its people. Employees who are engaged are more likely to be more fulfilled and benefit from improved wellbeing, which can result in higher levels of employee loyalty, performance and retention. This category looks for entries where employee engagement initiatives are having a clear and positive impact on organisational performance. 

The judges will be looking for employee engagement programmes that:

• foster an employee relations culture that enhances engagement, wellbeing and the contribution of employees in working towards the success of the business

• show evidence of strong working relationships and opportunities for dialogue across the organisation

• are business-focused and aligned to strategic objectives 

• demonstrate a clear understanding of data and evaluation (eg through survey results, absence levels and staff turnover rates)

• generate insight into the value of engagement in driving broad business outcomes, such as leadership and culture, and its relationship with overall performance.

 

This award recognises employers that offer innovative, outstanding and mutually beneficial volunteering opportunities to their employees. The emphasis is on the double benefit for communities and organisations by supporting employee development and engagement as well as helping charities to better achieve their strategic objectives. 

The judges will be looking for evidence of:

• how well opportunities are integrated into the organisation’s HR and L&D practices

• the level of take up, and how engaged staff are in the opportunities

• whether the volunteering opportunity makes the best use of the employees’ skills to add real value to charities and/or local communities

• the outcome for employees' skills and personal development

• how well opportunities are aligned to the needs of the local community and/or charity. 

 

This award recognises employers which place employee well-being centre stage within the organisation and have embedded a strong culture of workplace well-being. Investing in people’s health and well-being is good for business but it’s also the right thing to do. Successful programmes will be preventative and proactive in promoting people’s well-being, as well as demonstrating effective rehabilitation and return to work.

The judges will be looking for:

• a holistic approach that focuses on people’s physical and mental well-being

• how your programme is rooted in effective leadership, culture and people management capability

• how health and well-being activities are integrated across the organisation’s day-to-day operations

• value to the business in terms of reduced stress and sickness absence levels and/or improvements in staff engagement and performance.

 

In this category we’ll be looking for entries from an individual consultant/consultancy who has worked with a client on a specific people-related project to address a strategic issue. The consultancy must include written permission from the client on the entry form and we strongly recommend the client attends the presentation to the panel of judges if you get through to the second stage.

The judges will be looking for evidence of: 

• how you worked collaboratively with the HR/L&D team and wider organisation to undertake a specific people-related project

• the clear objectives of the initiative and how this links to the broader people strategy, and the business/organisational strategy

• how the project has delivered tangible business benefits to the organisation 

• evidence of impact on key business metrics or clear verifiable examples of how it has positively impacted the overall employee experience.

 

In this category we’ll be looking for entries from an individual supplier who has worked with a client on a specific people-related project to address a strategic issue. The supplier must include written permission from the client on the entry form and we strongly recommend the client attends the presentation to the panel of judges if you get through to the second stage.

The judges will be looking for evidence of: 

• how you have worked collaboratively with the HR/L&D team and wider organisation to undertake a specific people-related project

• the clear objectives of the initiative and how this links to the broader people strategy and the business/organisational strategy

• how the project has delivered tangible business benefits to the organisation 

• the impact on key business metrics, or clear verifiable examples of how it has positively impacted the overall employee experience.

 

More and more organisations are operating across geographical boundaries as they look to establish themselves in new markets. This new award will recognise effective HR in a multinational organisation.  

The judges will be looking for:

• strong evidence of a strategic approach to managing HR across boundaries that is relevant and effective across the various locations

• details of how values and employer brand are applied to various regions 

• information about communicating and sharing knowledge across country HR teams (if any), and the role of technology in this

• evidence that shows the benefits of a joined-up approach to HR delivery across boundaries.

 

This award recognises how a creative and effective L&D initiative has contributed to the success of the organisation and its people. While face-to-face learning is most useful in some contexts, effective organisational learning now embraces a range of approaches such as mobile, socially collaborative, in-the-flow of work, and through communities of practice and peer support. We therefore welcome entries that embrace creative approaches to staff development and learning.

The judges will be looking for:

• a clear link between the L&D initiative and business goals and development needs. You should also indicate the context for your activities, such as a change management programme

• evidence of an organisational culture that promotes learning, and focuses on talent and performance 

• what makes your initiative stand out, including what you have done that’s innovative 

• evidence of the initiative's effectiveness, and the benefits it has brought to the organisation and its people.  

 

This award recognises how a creative and effective L&D initiative has contributed to the success of the organisation and its people. While face-to-face learning is most useful in some contexts, effective organisational learning now embraces a range of approaches such as, mobile, socially collaborative, in-the-flow of work, and through communities of practice and peer support. We therefore welcome entries that embrace creative approaches to staff development and learning.

The judges will be looking for:

• a clear link between the L&D initiative and business goals and development needs. You should also indicate the context for your activities, such as a change management programme

• evidence of an organisational culture that promotes learning, and focuses on talent and performance

• what makes your initiative stand out, including what you have done that’s innovative 

• evidence of effectiveness of the initiative, and the benefits it has brought to the organisation and its people.

 

Best recruitment and talent management initiative

This award recognises employers who are implementing a creative and effective talent management strategy that takes into account current and future needs of the organisation. Skills shortages and mismatches have been identified as a concern at the highest level of government, and the impending exit from the EU and apprenticeship levy mean both strategic and operational excellence in recruitment have never been more important. Identifying, developing and retaining the right people are crucial concerns for HR and L&D teams in every sector.

The judges will be looking for: 

• clear objectives for the initiative, and how these link to the broader business/organisation strategy, both now and into the future 

• what makes your initiative stand out, including what you’ve done that’s innovative 

• the extent to which you have collaborated widely on your talent attraction and management strategy, and its ownership by the business

• the impact this initiative has had on both the organisation’s performance and its people

• evidence of diversity and inclusion considerations.

 

Reward holds a central place in any people management strategy. It can be a major lever, not just in recruitment and retention, but also in improving performance, shaping behaviours and supporting constructive employment relations. This category looks for entries that create value for your organisation by designing and implementing programmes that reward and recognise employee skills, behaviours and performances at an individual, team or organisational level. Examples of such initiatives could include: sharing business success, recognising individual achievement, and helping employees save for their future. 

The judges will be looking for:

• the clear objectives the initiative is trying to meet, and how these link to the broader business/organisation strategy

• how this initiative has had a direct impact on the organisation's performance

• if this initiative has had a direct impact on employee performance

• how the organisation tried to make reward decisions and outcomes fair and transparent

• if the initiative meets the diverse needs and preferences of staff.

 

This award recognises small or medium-sized businesses (fewer than 250 employees) that have transformed the way they manage and develop their people in support of business objectives. The judges will be looking for evidence of the impact of the new approach for people and the business. 

Judges will be looking for: 

• how your people management approach has changed, including details of your activity

• the reasons for this transformation, including how this initiative fits with your overall people management approach and business objectives

• how any barriers or challenges were overcome

• what makes your initiative stand out, including what you’ve done that’s innovative 

• evidence that the changes you have made have brought benefits to your people and the business.

 

Best HR/L&D team of the year

This award recognises HR/L&D teams that have demonstrated excellence across the organisation to meet both the needs of the business and its people. 

Judges will be looking for:

• an HR/L&D team that can demonstrate innovative and unique approaches to addressing either one key business issue across the year or multiple projects

• a strategic approach to all aspects of HR/L&D management

• exceptional teamwork and leadership including working across boundaries in a timely and effective way 

• a quantifiable contribution to commercial or organisational achievements because of exceptional team working 

• operational excellence in execution.

 

Studying is not just about acquiring relevant knowledge: successful students apply what they have learned to bring about real benefits to the business and its people. We’re looking for an exceptional individual who is currently studying or has recently completed a recognised CIPD postgraduate level qualification.  Successful applications will demonstrate how their studies have enabled them to initiate and implement business improvements in their own organisation. This category is open to students who are currently studying or have successfully completed (since 1 January 2016) a recognised CIPD qualification at postgraduate advanced level.

 

Studying is not just about acquiring relevant knowledge: successful students apply what they have learned to bring about real benefits to the business and its people. We’re looking for an exceptional individual who is currently studying or has recently completed a recognised CIPD intermediate and foundation level qualification. Successful applications will demonstrate how their studies have enabled them to initiate and implement business improvements in their own organisation. This category is open to students who are currently studying or have successfully completed (since 1 January 2016) a recognised CIPD qualification at intermediate/foundation level.

 

Website Menu