The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise

About the awards

1. About the awards

The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are for outstanding achievement by UK businesses in the categories of:

  • innovation
  • international trade
  • sustainable development
  • promoting opportunity through social mobility

Find out if your business is eligible.

What happens if your company wins

If you win you’ll be:

  • invited to a Royal reception at Buckingham Palace, hosted by Her Majesty The Queen
  • presented the award at your company by one of The Queen’s representatives, a Lord-Lieutenant
  • able to fly The Queen’s Award flag at your main office, and use the emblem on your marketing materials (for example, on your packaging, advertisements, stationery and website)
  • given a Grant of Appointment and a commemorative crystal bowl

The awards are valid for 5 years.

Winners have reported benefiting from worldwide recognition, increased commercial value, greater press coverage and a boost to staff morale.

Find out when winners are announced.

Previous winners

View details of previous Queen’s Awards winners.

Eligibility

2. Eligibility

To apply for the Queen’s Award for Enterprise your organisation must:

  • be based in the UK (including the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man)
  • file its Company Tax Returns with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC)
  • be a self-contained enterprise that markets its own products or services and is under its own management
  • have at least 2 full-time UK employees or part-time equivalents
  • demonstrate strong corporate social responsibility

Your organisation can be business or non-profit.

Each of the award categories has additional entry criteria.

International Trade

To apply for the International Trade award, you must also:

  • have made a minimum of £100,000 in overseas sales in the first year of your entry and show year-on-year growth
  • prove that your organisation has achieved outstanding growth in overseas earnings relative to your business size and sector
  • prove steep year-on-year growth (without dips) in overseas sales over 3 years – or substantial year-on-year growth (without dips) over 6 years

Innovation

To apply for the Innovation award, you must also:

  • have an innovation that hasn’t been sold before
  • have had your innovation available on the market for at least 2 years
  • have recovered all the investments made in your innovation or show that the innovation will recover its full costs in future
  • show outstanding commercial success as a result of innovation over 2 years – or continuous commercial success over 5 years

Your innovation should be in one of the following categories:

  • invention, design or production of goods
  • performance of services
  • marketing and distribution
  • after-sale support of goods or services

Sustainable Development

To apply for the Sustainable Development award you must either:

  • show how your outstanding sustainable development practices have helped to improve your commercial performance over 2 years
  • show how your continuous sustainable development practices have helped to improve your commercial performance over 5 years

Your achievements should be in one of the following categories:

  • invention, design or production of goods
  • performance of services
  • marketing and distribution
  • after-sale support of goods or services
  • management of resources or relationships with people and other organisations

Promoting Opportunity through social mobility

To apply for the Promoting Opportunity award, you must also:

  • have had a social mobility programme running for more than 2 years
  • prove that the programme has had a positive impact on your commercial success over 2 or 5 years (for example, it has improved your reputation or led to savings in the business)

Your improvements should be in one of the following areas:

  • work experience, careers advice or mentoring for young people
  • offering non-graduate routes such as traineeships or changing recruitment practices
  • giving equal support and progression opportunities to all employees

Apply

3. Apply

The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are free to enter. You can apply for more than one award.

You’ll need to:

  • create an account and register your details
  • answer questions about your eligibility – this should take less than 15 minutes
  • submit your application between 21 April and 1 September 2017 (midday)

Contact the Queen’s Awards Helpline if you need help.

Queen’s Awards Helpline
Telephone: 020 7215 6880
Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
Find out about call charges
queensawards@beis.gov.uk

What happens next

Find out what happens after you apply, including when organisations are shortlisted and have to provide verified commercial figures.

After you've applied

4. After you’ve applied

If you submitted an application in 2016

Time Step
November 2016 Shortlisted organisations must provide verified commercial figures.
March 2017 Winning organisations are told.
April 2017 Unsuccessful organisations receive feedback on their applications.
21 April 2017 Winners are officially announced in the London Gazette and on GOV.UK. They receive a Grant of Appointment, a presentational item and the Queen’s Awards emblem.
July 2017 Representatives from the winning organisations attend a Buckingham Palace reception hosted by Her Majesty The Queen.

If you submit an application in 2017

Time Step
21 April 2017 New application period opens for 2017 awards.
1 September 2017 (midday) Application period closes.
October 2017 Shortlisted organisations are told.
November 2017 Shortlisted organisations must provide verified commercial figures.
March 2018 Winning organisations are told.

Last updated: 10 January 2017

Was this article helpful?

Related Articles