Entry Tips

How to win a Utility Week Stars Award – tips from our judges

We know how important wining a Utility Week Stars Award is to you and your business – so to give you the best chance, we’ve asked our judges for their top tips.
What the judges say:

“Entering awards is rarely written in anyone’s job description, it’s an ‘extra’, which gets passed around the office like a scalding baked potato because of the workload involved. Don’t let that put you off; it’s totally worth it.“In a world where competition gets hotter by the minute, awards are PR gold – just look how they are used. My best advice – is take the time to make your entry as detailed and thorough as possible.” Mike Foster, chief executive, Energy and Utilities Alliance

“Competition is tough for these awards and the calibre of finalists for each category is high. Submissions should be specific about how they have made a difference.“They need to be backed up with evidence such as case studies or figures and ideally include some third-party verification from those who worked with you or benefitted from your success. Most of all, choose something that really stands out and be competitive in how you show it.” David Smith, chief executive, Energy Networks Association

“Make sure you know what the award is for and that your entry is appropriate.“Find out what criteria will be used to judge your entry; this may be clear if you are asked to complete a structured, pro-forma document to make your entry.“Think about what will convince the judges that your entry is worthy and better than others.“Remember that judging panels often have very limited time to assess each entry. You will not be rewarded for the number of words you write but vital information can be lost in a sea of words.“If there are published guidelines for your entry, stick to them. If there are section headings, ensure the information you put down is relevant and complete. If there are specific questions, make sure you answer each one accurately.“Make sure your entry clearly shows how it meets all the criteria the judges are looking for – keep it clear and concise.”
Paul Mullord, UK director, British Water

“Keep it brief and make sure the aims and results are clear and impressive. Remember you are competing with others who want to win.” Audrey Gallacher, head of energy team, Consumer Focus

“Keep it concise, show the evaluation and impact of projects or initiatives. Demonstrate how things are embedded in the culture of the organisation, where there’s senior management buy-in, etc.” Tony Smith, chief executive, CCWater