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High Sheriff's Award for Inclusive Business Practice

This prize will be awarded to an organisation that can demonstrate through action that they make a difference to equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI).  This difference may be within the workplace itself (e.g. through recruitment practices, through development and training for career progression and advancement); and/ or externally with stakeholders (e.g. product design to meet particularly hard to reach market segments or developing services to meet the needs of disadvantaged or under-represented societal groups within a customer/client base). 

The submission should describe the activities undertaken and their impact to date. 

High Sheriff’s Award for Outstanding Community, Education and Business Engagement

This prize will be awarded to the charity or business that has made a significant difference to the community they serve. This could relate to the development or utilisation of new products or technology in order to reach the most vulnerable in our communities. It could also relate to new and innovative ways of developing strong relationships and a sense of community with stakeholders. 

The submission should describe the community(ies) impacted and the ways in which the charity or business has engaged with them. There should be least one strong example of how the engagement has made a real tangible difference to said community.  

High Sheriff’s Award for Environmental Innovation and Impact

This prize will be awarded to an organisation whose purpose is to deliver a lasting environmental benefit, demonstrating a measurable impact that has the potential to be grown at scale. This can be in any service, manufacturing or product enterprise and includes both novel initiatives as well as those which are established and are now delivering environmental gains.

Your submission should demonstrate clearly how innovation has been achieved and how it will be sustained.

High Sheriff’s Award for Business Health and Wellbeing


This award seeks to recognise and champion the incredible steps taken by those businesses or charities that are creating an environment for their employees to succeed. These businesses or charities will be able to demonstrate their commitment to the health and wellbeing of their workforce.

Judges will be looking for those organisations that have developed and implemented an effective, holistic strategy which has had a proven and significant positive impact on the health and wellbeing of its workforce.​

Please summarise and provide examples of how current workplace culture and practices support employee health and wellbeing and have led to employee satisfaction, retention, and increased productivity, creating a healthier and happier workforce (see examples below). Plus, any additional practices and initiatives developed to support the health and wellbeing of others across the system e.g., consumers. Case studies welcome where possible.

Your application could focus on the following examples:

  • Health and wellbeing as an organisation priority e.g. through relevant policies/strategies, employee health champions
  • Health and wellbeing within management processes e.g. being included in skills/knowledge requirements of managers
  • Promoting and supporting both physical health and mental health
  • Enabling all employees to participate in decisions around practices that impact upon them e.g. contribute to plans/policies
  • Providing initiatives to reduce waste and carbon emissions e.g. active travel schemes, reusable drinking cups/bottles
  • Promoting health and wellbeing to both staff and consumers

High Sheriff’s Award for Digital Innovation

This prize will be awarded for the most innovative use of technology in business transformation.

The submission should outline the specific technology, how it has been used and the business improvements that have been observed as a result. Please provide at least one strong example that illustrates the improvements observed.

High Sheriff's Award for Exceptional Start-Up

This prize will be awarded to an exceptional business or charity that has been operational for less than two years. The submission should provide an overview of why and how the business or charity was established. Please identify performance to date and describe any challenges faced in setting up the business or charity. Please provide a clear description of the aspirations for the business moving forwards. 

High Sheriff’s Award for Outstanding Family Business

This prize recognises outstanding entrepreneurial families and / or the achievements of specific family organisations.

The submission should describe what is particularly innovative or distinctive about the entrepreneurial family or business. Please include at least one clear example of how the concept of ‘family’ is important to the organisation.

Apprentice of the Year

This prize will recognise the development, improvement, contribution, and commitment of the selected apprentice.  Your submission should explain what contribution and commitment the apprentice (who may be the entrant themselves) has made, using at least one example of the types of projects they have been involved in. You should also describe the development and improvement the apprentice has made over the time they have been with an organisation. Nominations for the Apprentice Award are welcomed from businesses of any size.

Young Business Person of the Year


This prize will recognise a young person under 30 who has shown entrepreneurial spirit and endeavour within their role. This ‘business sense’ may be connected to a workplace or to the development of a business. Entrants may also consider any challenges that the young person (who may be the entrant themselves) has had to overcome to be successful.

Your submission will provide detail about how the young person has shown their business potential. You should provide at least one strong example of the way in which the young person has shown resilience or commitment to their employment pathway.

High Sheriff’s Award for Excellence in Enterprise


This prize will be awarded to the business that has achieved outstanding commercial success and sustainable growth over the past two years.

Submissions should describe innovative practice or a specific initiative and should also demonstrate a willingness to undertake bold new ventures.

The submission should demonstrate evidence of sustainable growth and commercial success across the business, to levels that are outstanding for the size of the operation.