To hear tips from past judges, watch the Tips for your AHRI Awards Application Webinar. Watch the recording here (45 min).
Remember, many applications are received for each award so ensure you are clear and concise in your submission so panels can easily identify your key points. Use dot points and sub-headings where relevant.
Ensure that you address ALL of the criteria for the award – not just those you feel are most applicable to you or that you are able to demonstrate more easily. Failure to address criteria will, in most cases, result in not being selected as a finalist as the submission is rated and assessed against the criteria.
Have someone else in your team or outside of your team (eg marketing) read through your submission prior to submitting to check for errors, omissions and presentation. If they have issues with the submission or it is not clear to them what the initiative is, chances are it will not be clear to the judging panel members.
Try not to use industry specific ‘language’ that the judging panel may not necessarily understand.
Don’t exceed the word limit. The judging members have many submissions to read through and it will increase the risk of your submission not being read in its entirety.
Your submission should clearly define the challenge, the initiative and the outcomes – focus where possible on a single initiative or a consolidated strategy, rather than drawing from a variety of different initiatives.
Examples should flow through the application and clearly address the challenge/s and contribute to the outcomes.
The submission should also include clear time frames for the initiative – include when the initiative was developed and implemented and how many cycles or reporting periods it has been in place. Ensure you include impact and outcomes across these time periods to show improvements generated by the initiative.
Statistics and data – inserting small graphs or snippets of data into the submission will not be included in the word count of your submission and is a great way to show the judges the impact that your initiative has made. Measurable data is encouraged wherever possible.
Consider what makes your initiative unique or stand out from the pack. What is innovative and unique about the challenge and the way you have addressed it?
Your initiative/program does not necessarily need to be complete and may be in fairly early stages of its progress. But, you do need to identify the initial issue being addressed and be able to show/demonstrate deliverables to date. Do not apply to early for an award if you do not have ‘runs on the board’ as yet.
Concentrate on the individual. The judging panel are assessing the individual and their own achievements. Please ensure that you remember to focus on the individual applicant and the impact that this person has made.
Provide examples. The judging panel need written examples of how each of the criteria has been demonstrated. For example, if the criteria is about leadership, simply stating that you are a leader of the organisation is not sufficient. How are you a leader of the organisation? Provide an example of how you demonstrates this.
Consider what makes you unique or stand out from the crowd. Ensure you highlight these traits in the submission.