Outstanding Businesses called on to enter Queen’s Awards

Businesses which can demonstrate outstanding commercial success have the chance to boost their profile by entering the prestigious Queen’s Awards for Enterprise.

Described as a “knighthood for business”, the awards are open to UK-based businesses which have at least two full-time employees or part-time equivalent, and can demonstrate commercial success in one of the three categories ? international trade, innovation and sustainable development.

Businesses must have been running for at least two years to be eligible for the innovation or sustainable development categories, and at least three to enter the international trade category.

Winners are entitled to display the Queen’s Award emblem on their stationery, advertising, marketing material and packaging for a period of five years. They will also be offered guidance on how to use their award to market their firm.

In addition, successful applicants will also be invited to a garden party reception at Buckingham Palace and be visited by a royal representative.

Nicki Gilbert, spokesperson for the 2010 international trade award winner, shipping firm Kestrel Liner, said that the award had benefited them in many different ways.

“It has boosted staff morale, but it has also helped Kestrel Liner in a more tangible way,” she said. “In the two and a half months since we received our award, we have won two big new contracts that we were hoping to win, and a lot of other new business. It also means that high-quality staff now approach us wanting to work here.

“In addition, it has made it easier to finalise contracts with new clients, as instead of having to check us out to see if we’re a good firm to do business with, the Queen’s Award shows them that we are an ethical company and we are robust financially,” added Gilbert. “The most important aspects of the awards application are emphasising how the firm is different to other businesses, and using your figures to show the judges what you have achieved.”

The deadline for entries to the awards is 29 October 2011.

For more information about the awards and to download an application form, visit the Business Link website for the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise.

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