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FAQ - Company Awards


Q. Can we (the UK company) submit a joint entry with our global colleagues?


No. If two organisations have distinct BHBIA memberships (which would normally be the case for the UK and global organisations) they would need to enter separately. A similar situation applies to agencies that have distinct divisions with separate BHBIA memberships.

In addition, companies entering these awards must be UK based and/or have a significant focus in the UK, so not all organisations would be eligible to enter, even if they are BHBIA members.

Q. I understand that Personal Members can enter. How does this work?


Personal Members can enter the Agency of the Year Award. Although we recognise that Personal Members are individuals, and are not considered to be ‘companies’ in terms of their BHBIA membership, we want to give you an opportunity to gain recognition too. You need to follow exactly the same entry process as for agencies, tailoring your responses to each section of the template as is appropriate for your circumstances.

Q. Is the competition open to fieldwork providers?


Yes. All types of agencies and consultancies are invited to enter for the Agency of the Year award.

Completing your submission & the judging stage

Q. What will make my entry stand out and what pitfalls should I avoid?


Make sure you communicate what is different about your company. You should ensure in particular that your Executive Summary is a powerful statement that captures the key points of your submission and will make your company stand out.

Our experience from the Panel-Judged Awards is that it’s important to write in a very clear, concise style and avoid jargon. Entries are often criticised for lack of clarity, so we suggest that you get someone from outside your department/organisation to read through your entry and provide you with objective feedback. Check for spelling and grammar – errors create an impression that a lack of care has been taken and can detract from your entry’s strengths. 

Pharma companies can download a document giving you some ideas about what to include in your entry - click here

Q. How will my entry be judged?


Judges will be asked to rate each entry using a scoring system based on evaluating each section of the entry template. This is designed to be as objective as possible - you can see the criteria at the end of the entry template.

The same scoring system will be used at both the shortlisting and final judging stages. At both stages judges will confer to ensure that a consensus decision is reached, and they will be required to justify their decisions.


Q. What about confidentiality – who is going to be looking at my entry and who will know that I have entered?


At both the shortlisting and final judging stages, your entry will be seen by a small, specially selected panel, carefully chosen to avoid any bias/conflict of interest. All judges will have signed a confidentiality undertaking, and are bound by this undertaking not to use or discuss any information contained in the entries outside of the process.

The panel may include judges from outside business intelligence as well as senior business intelligence professionals (for Pharma Company of the Year these will be drawn from the agency membership and for Agency of the Year from the pharma membership).

Please bear this in mind when deciding what content to include (e.g. if you are a pharma company you should not include specific details about work you have commissioned from one of your agencies, as it would not be appropriate for other agencies to view this).

You also have an opportunity (on the entry template) to specify any other organisations whose employees you do not wish to view your entry, and judges from those companies will be excluded from your category.

Only those companies that are shortlisted will be identified to the wider BHBIA membership, and only your Executive Summary will be published.

Q. My executive summary exceeds the word-count – if my overall submission is within the word count does this matter?


Yes. Please stick to the 300 words and please do not include any visuals within this section. We need texts to be within this limit for use in publicity. If your executive summary is longer, we will cut it down for publication and important content could be lost.

Q. How important is the word count guide for each section of the entry template?


Although there is flexibility in how you split the word count across the sections, you need have a good balance of information in each. But if you can sum up a particular section clearly in less than the guideline on number of words that is absolutely fine.

Q. If I inadvertently stray slightly from the specified format, will I be disqualified?


Not if you use the official Entry Template and stick to the overall word count. We do reserve the right to disqualify entries that exceed the word-count.
If we need you to amend anything we will contact you. We are keen to make it straightforward to enter and the specified framework is intended to help, not hinder this.

Q. Can I include additional information as an appendix?


No, you need to stick to the word limit. You can include up to 3 visuals/charts in addition to that, as specified in the entry template, but these should be used where a visual representation will add value to the entry, rather than as a way to increase the written content.

You can reference your sources if applicable, but please do not include hyperlinks - you should assume your entry will be assessed in hard copy format, so any information that is not part of the entry itself will not be read.

Entrants are assessed on their ability to get across the key messages in a concise way and this also ensures that submissions are manageable for the judges to review.

Further information

Q. How will I know my entry has been received?


You will receive an automated notification email when you submit your entry form (if this does not arrive, or if you have any concerns over whether your entry has been uploaded, please contact us immediately – please do not wait until the deadline has passed). You will find out if you have been short-listed by early March.

Q. Will I get feedback on my submission?


Yes. If your entry is not short-listed you will get constructive feedback on the reasons (and if you are shortlisted the judges will provide a short statement on what impressed them about your company).

Q. Who do I contact with any outstanding questions or queries?


Please email us: and the admin team will either answer your query directly, or refer you to someone who can help.

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