2024 Optus Albury Wodonga Business Awards

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How to enter

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Key dates

Why enter in 2024?

 

The 2024 Optus Albury Wodonga Business Awards provide a unique opportunity to

 

  • Compare and benchmark your business to your industry peers
  • Gain valuable insights about where to develop and improve
  • Reflect consciously on what you’ve achieved and where you want to go next
  • Network with like-minded business people who want to thrive
  • Celebrate the outstanding contributions of businesses and individuals in our region
  • Set yourself apart from the competition and elevate your brand

Entry is free and you don’t need to be an Albury Business Connect or Business Wodonga member to enter.

Jo and Andrew from Formulae

2023 Most Outstanding Business: Formulae Albury

Categories

Excellence in Digital Online Business
MicrotechDPS
Sponsored by: MicrotechDPS

This award will recognise and celebrate an established business or organisation (profit or not for profit, online or bricks and mortar) in the provision of Online-Digital Services that is commercially sustainable and can demonstrate excellence and improvement in the previous 12 months.

A business or organisation that is primarily engaged in providing products, services, bookings or other as a digital service. Applicants must demonstrate the use, uptake and functionality of their APP or Website or platform and how this enhances the user experience. For Example:

  • Product Sales 
  • Digital Marketplace
  • Services
  • Information Sharing
  • Resource or production planning
  • Asset Management
  • Other related services.
Eligibility

The business:

Excellence in Manufacturing, Construction and Logistics
Sponsored by:

 

This award will recognise and celebrate an established business or organisation (profit or not for profit, online or bricks and mortar) in the Manufacturing, Construction and Logistics industry that is commercially sustainable and can demonstrate excellent development in the previous 12 months.

Encompassing both the creation of new products through material transformation, construction of buildings and related trades and transport logistics and warehousing. This business or organization operates across the spectrum of manufacturing, construction and logistics. For example:

  • Textile, leather, clothing & footwear
  • Wood products
  • Pulp, paper and converted paper
  • Printing products
  • Polymer/Rubber products
  • Metal/ Fabricated Metal
  • Transport including local, interstate, linehaul
  • Warehousing & 3PL
  • Importing, exporting including customs clearance
  • Machinery & equipment
  • Furniture & other
  • Residential & Non-Residential
  • Heavy & Civil
  • Construction/ Building Services
  • Engineering
  • Suppliers & Contractors
  • Town Planning & Surveying
Eligibility

The business:

Excellence in Healthcare, Disability and Social Assistance
Sponsored by: Gateway Health

This award will recognise and celebrate an established business or organisation (profit or not for profit, online or bricks and mortar) in the Healthcare, Disability and Social Assistance sector that is commercially sustainable and can demonstrate excellent development in the previous 12 months.

A business or organisation that is primarily engaged in providing health, disability and social assistance services to individuals and organisations. Includes but not limited to products and services designed to support wellbeing. For Example:

  • Hospitals
  • Medical services e.g., GP’s, Specialists
  • Pathology & diagnostics
  • Allied Health e.g., Dental & Physio
  • Other health care services e.g., Ambulance, Childcare, Referral services
  • Residential and aged care
  • Social assistance – child care, disability, welfare, counselling
  • Fitness and dietary
  • Disability services
  • Suppliers & Contractors
  • Town Planning & Surveying
Eligibility

The business:

Excellence in Education and Training
Sponsored by: Wodonga TAFE

Description: This award will recognise and celebrate an established business or
organisation (profit or not for profit, online or bricks and mortar) in the Education & Training sector that is commercially sustainable and can demonstrate excellent development in the previous 12 months.

A business or organisation that is primarily engaged in providing education and training. Includes but not limited to providing courses, programs, education, learning, training and development products and services but excludes primary and secondary schools.

For Example:
● Tertiary institutions
● Adult, community & other
● Educational support services
● RTO’s
● Training providers
● Skills based programs
● Coaching and Mentoring
● Online courses

Eligibility:
The business:
● Must have been trading continuously for 24 months and over.
● Must meet the general eligibility criteria outlined in the Albury Wodonga Business Awards Terms & Conditions.

Excellence in Retail and Personal Services
Sponsored by: Regent Cinemas Albury Wodonga

This award will recognise and celebrate an established business or organisation (profit or not for profit, online or bricks and mortar) in the Retail & Personal Services sector that is commercially sustainable and can demonstrate excellent development in the previous 12 months.

A business or organisation that is primarily engaged in selling goods and services to consumers (business to consumer or business to business) for use, consumption, or resale through multiple distribution channels both online and bricks and mortar.

For Example:

  • Motor vehicles, parts & tyres
  • Fuel
  • Food
  • Apparel
  • Other store-based retailing
  • Auto repair & maintenance
  • Machinery & equipment
  • Personal services e.g., hairdressing, wellness, funeral services, laundry/dry cleaning, photographic, parking, religious, civic
Eligibility

The business:

Excellence in Commercial, Professional and Business Services
Sponsored by: The Jacob Group of Companies

This award will recognise and celebrate an established business or organisation (profit or not for profit, online or bricks and mortar) in the Commercial, Professional and Business Services sector that is commercially sustainable and can demonstrate excellent development in the previous 12 months.

A business or organisation that is primarily engaged in the Commercial, Professional and Business Services sector. Includes but not limited to real estate agencies, accounting and law firms and other business-related services.

For Example:

  • Scientific research
  • Architectural
  • Legal & Accounting
  • Advertising
  • Market Research
  • Management & consulting
  • Veterinary
  • Computer system design
  • Administration services
  • Travel & tour services
  • Cleaning, pest & gardening
  • Finance & insurance
  • Rental & hiring
  • Real estate services
  • Information media & telecommunications
Eligibility

The business:

Excellence in Hospitality, Leisure and Tourism
Sponsored by: Visit Albury Wodonga

 

This award will recognise and celebrate an established business or organisation (profit or not for profit, online or bricks and mortar) in the Hospitality, Leisure and Tourism industry that is commercially sustainable and can demonstrate excellent development in the previous 12 months.

A business or organisation that is primarily engaged in providing short term accommodation, hospitality, and associated products, services, events, and experiences.

For Example:

  • Hotels, motels, resorts, bed & breakfast, self-contained short stays, caravan & camping
  • Food & beverage, cafes, restaurants, take-away, home delivery & catering
  • Pubs, taverns, bars & clubs
  • Museums, galleries
  • Parks & gardens
  • Creative & performing arts
  • Sports & recreation
  • Amusements & experiences
Eligibility

The business:

Excellence in Agriculture and Agricultural Services
Sponsored by: FarmTech

This award will recognise and celebrate an established business or organisation (profit or not for profit, online or bricks and mortar) in the Agriculture & Agricultural Services industry that is commercially sustainable and can demonstrate excellent development in the previous 12 months.

A business or organisation that is primarily engaged in agriculture & agricultural Services includes but not limited to farming, processing, manufacturing, and distributing products and services.

For Example:

  • Food & beverage products
  • Agricultural equipment and products.
  • Regionally grown produce
  • Bakery, confectionery makers
  • Dairy & livestock producers
  • Agriculture – nursery, floriculture, fruit & vegetable, trees, crops, dairy, poultry, deer, other livestock
  • Aquaculture
  • Forestry & logging
  • Fishing, hunting 
  • Related support services
Eligibility

The business:

Excellence in Innovation*
Sponsored by: Bank WAW

The Excellence in Innovation Award recognises a business that has implemented innovative solutions for new and existing needs through the introduction or improvement of a product, technology, or application that impacts the wider community. 

Entry criteria
  • Entrants are required to demonstrate their achievements over the past 12 months at the time of entry across the key area of innovation.
  • Must meet the general eligibility criteria outlined in the Albury Wodonga Business Awards Terms & Conditions.

This category aligns with the BusinessNSW regional and state-level awards. For your entry to be considered for the BusinessNSW awards, the following additional eligibility criteria apply:

  • The business has been trading for a continuous period of two or more years and is not bankrupt or trading insolvent at the time of entry. 
  • A representative of this business has not been a judge in this category in 2023. 
  • A representative of this business is not a judge in the 2024 Business Awards program. 
Excellence in New Business*
Sponsored by: Innovate Health

The Excellence in New Business Award recognises a start-up business that has effectively driven growth and  is able to demonstrate the potential to achieve future success. 

Entry criteria
  • This category is open to new businesses trading for a period of greater than 12 months and less than 36 months at the close of the entry window.  
  • Must meet the general eligibility criteria outlined in the Albury Wodonga Business Awards Terms & Conditions.

This category aligns with the BusinessNSW regional and state-level awards. For your entry to be considered for the BusinessNSW awards, the following additional eligibility criteria apply:

  • This business has been trading for a period of less than two years and is not bankrupt or trading insolvent at the time of entry. 
  • This business has not been purchased or acquired and is not part of a franchise. 
  • The business has not entered the categories of Outstanding Community Organisation, Excellence in Micro Business, Excellence in Small Business or Excellence in Business. 
  • A representative of this business has not been a judge in this category in 2023. 
  • A representative of this business is not a judge in the 2024 Business Awards program.
Excellence in Small Business*
Baker Motors
Sponsored by: Baker Motors

The Excellence in Small Business Award recognises a business that has effectively driven growth and is able to demonstrate the specific strategies implemented to achieve business success and/or resilience. 

Entry criteria
  • Entrants are required to demonstrate their achievements over the past 12 months at the time of entry across the key area of business excellence. This category is open to businesses with 1 to 20 employees (including sole traders) and that have been trading for a period of over 36 months at the close of the entry window.
  • Must meet the general eligibility criteria outlined in the Albury Wodonga Business Awards Terms & Conditions.

This category aligns with the BusinessNSW regional and state-level awards. For your entry to be considered for the BusinessNSW awards, the following additional eligibility criteria apply:

  • This business has been trading for a continuous period of two years or more and is not bankrupt or trading insolvent at the time of entry. 
  • This business has 5 to 20 employees on the payroll in Australia at the time of entry. If the business has less than 5 employees you will need to submit a separate entry with BusinessNSW for Excellence in Micro Business.
  • This business has not entered the categories of Outstanding Community Organisation, Outstanding  New Business, Excellence in Micro Business or Excellence in Business.  
  • A representative of this business has not been a judge in this category in 2023. 
  • A representative of this business is not a judge in the 2024 Business Awards program.
Excellence in Medium / Large Business*
Sponsored by: Triple M The Border

The Excellence in Medium / Large Business Award recognises a business that has effectively driven growth and is able to demonstrate the specific strategies implemented to achieve business success and/or resilience. 

Entry criteria
  • Entrants are required to demonstrate their achievements over the past 12 months across the key area of business excellence. This category is open to businesses with 21 or more employees and that have been trading for a period of over 36 months at the close of the entry window.

This category aligns with the BusinessNSW regional and state-level awards. For your entry to be considered for the BusinessNSW awards, the following additional eligibility criteria apply:

    • This business has been trading for a continuous period of two years or more and is not bankrupt or trading insolvent at the time of entry. 
    • This business has 21 or more employees on the payroll in Australia at the time of entry. 
    • This business has not entered the categories of Outstanding Community Organisation, Outstanding  New Business, Excellence in Micro Business or Excellence in Small Business.  
    • A representative of this business has not been a judge in this category in 2023. 
    • A representative of this business is not a judge in the 2024 Business Awards program.
    Employer of Choice*
    Sponsored by: Total HRM

    The Employer of Choice Award recognises a business that has implemented strategies and initiatives to create a stimulating and supportive workplace environment.  

    Entry criteria
    • Entrants are required to demonstrate their achievements over the past 12 months across the key areas of employee recruitment, engagement and retention. Category criteria are based on initiatives that have had a positive impact on both employees and the business. 
    • Must meet the general eligibility criteria outlined in the Albury Wodonga Business Awards Terms & Conditions.

    This category aligns with the BusinessNSW regional and state-level awards. For your entry to be considered for the BusinessNSW awards, the following additional eligibility criteria apply:

    • The business has been trading for a continuous period of two years or more and is not bankrupt or trading insolvent at the time of entry. 
    • A representative of this business has not been a judge in this category in 2023.  
    • A representative of this business is not a judge in the 2024 Business Awards program.
    • Must meet the general eligibility criteria outlined in the Albury Wodonga Business Awards Terms & Conditions.
    Outstanding Young Business Leader*
    Sponsored by: Innovate Health

    The Outstanding Young Business Leader Award recognises an inspirational business leader aged 35 or under at the time of entry who has demonstrated a commitment to their workplace, industry, and the community through leadership. 

    Entry criteria 
    • Entrants are required to demonstrate their commitment over the past 12 months to creating a smarter and more inclusive future and to being an outstanding business leader.
    • To be eligible to enter this category, the individual must be aged 35 years or under and have held a management position within their organisation for a minimum of 18 months at the time of entry. 
    • Must meet the general eligibility criteria outlined in the Albury Wodonga Business Awards Terms & Conditions.

    This category aligns with the BusinessNSW regional and state-level awards. For your entry to be considered for the BusinessNSW awards, the following additional eligibility criteria apply:

    • I am aged 35 years or under at the time of entry.  
    • I am not an employee, Regional President, State Councillor or Board Member of NSW Business  Chamber Limited.  
    • I have not been a judge in this category in 2023. 
    •  I am not a judge in the 2024 Business Awards program.
    • Must meet the general eligibility criteria outlined in the Albury Wodonga Business Awards Terms & Conditions.
    Outstanding Business Leader*
    Sponsored by: Gawk Outdoor

    The Outstanding Business Leader Award recognises an inspirational business leader aged 36 years or over at the time of entry who has demonstrated a commitment to their workplace, industry, and the community through leadership, whilst providing mentorship to others. 

    Entry criteria 

    • Entrants are required to demonstrate their commitment over the past 12 months to creating a smarter and more inclusive future and to being an outstanding mentor and business leader.
    • To be eligible to enter this category, the individual must aged 36 years or over and have held a senior management or executive level position within their organisation for a minimum of 18 months at the time of entry. 
    • Must meet the general eligibility criteria outlined in the Albury Wodonga Business Awards Terms & Conditions.

    This category aligns with the BusinessNSW regional and state-level awards. For your entry to be considered for the BusinessNSW awards, the following additional eligibility criteria apply:

    •  I am aged 36 or over years at the time of entry.  
    • I am not an employee, Regional President, State Councillor or Board Member of NSW Business  Chamber Limited.  
    • I have not been a judge in this category in 2023. 
    •  I am not a judge in the 2024 Business Awards program. 
    • This business has 20 employees or under on the payroll in Australia at the time of entry.
    Most Outstanding Business
    Sponsored by: Optus

     

    One business will be named the 2024 Most Outstanding Business. This award is awarded to a Business that has been judged to be an outstanding business, that has provided an entry that demonstrates achievements and excellence over and above all other entrants. This award will be judged by the chief judge, with recommendations from each of the category judges.

    2023 recipient: Formulae

    Hall of Fame
    Sponsored by: The Border Mail

    Every year, a new Hall of Fame inductee is chosen. The Albury Wodonga Business Awards Hall of Fame recognises and celebrates outstanding individual achievements and contributions to our community.

    2023 recipient: Neville Jacobs

    Categories marked with an asterisk (*) align with the BusinessNSW regional and state awards. See Step 2 in the How to Enter section below for more information.

    how to enter

    Step 1 – Select the award/s you wish to enter

    Established businesses 

    (Trading continuously for more than 36 months.)

    • You can enter to win Outstanding Business in one of the 15 industry-based awards. This award will be presented to one outstanding business in each of our eight industry sectors. 
    • You can also enter to win the award for Outstanding Employer (Employer of Choice) by completing an additional set of questions. This award will be presented to one outstanding business.


    New businesses

    (New businesses trading for a period of greater than 12 months and less than 36 months at the close of the entry window.)

    • You can enter to win Outstanding New Business. This award will be presented to one outstanding new business in any industry. 


    Individuals

    • Emerging young leaders (35 years and under) can enter to win Outstanding Young Business Leader. This award will be presented to one Outstanding Young Business Leader from any industry.
    • Established leaders (36 years and over) can enter to win Outstanding Business Leader. This award will be presented to one Outstanding Business Leader from any industry.
    Step 2 – Complete your entry
    1. Read through our terms and conditions and privacy policy.
    2. Attend the Entrants’ Workshop for tips, tricks and information on creating a winning awards entry. Register here.
    3. Once you have decided which award/s you will enter, you will be required to create an account in Award Force – this is the digital platform you will use to complete and submit your entry. If you created an account for the 2023 Albury Wodonga Business Awards, you will need to use that same account.
    4. Address the written assessment criteria. You can stop and save your progress at any time.
    Optional BusinessNSW Business Awards category entries

    This year seven of our categories are aligned with the Business NSW Awards categories. These categories are marked with an asterix above.

    If the winner from one of the aligned categories would like to progress to the Business NSW Regional Awards as a Regional Finalist in their category, they must:

    • comply with the BNSW Awards Terms and Conditions
    • complete the online entry system for the purpose of judging
    • category winners at a Local Business Chamber level must satisfy a gateway score that BusinessNSW will set at the start of every awards program

    Regardless of where you end up placing in the Awards, you will receive a short summary report that you can use post-awards to continue to pursue an improvement journey, should you choose to do so.

    Step 3 – Finalists interviews

    Finalists will be announced on Wednesday, 3 July 2024. Finalists may be contacted by the judges to organise a site visit or face-to-face interview in July.

    Tips and tricks for a winning entry

    1. Keep your sentences to 14 words or less.
    2. Include one idea per sentence.
    3. Avoid using the word “and” to make complex ideas fit into one sentence.
    4. Incorporate personality in your entry.
    5. If you are a sole trader, consider your key suppliers, contractors, and customers when discussing people.
    6. Link your overall story to the dialogue you have used in other questions. For example, when talking about difficulties, show your plan to overcome them in “planning for the future.”
    7. Get everything on paper – many drafts will help create a great submission.
    8. Reinforce the question you are answering.
    9. Think like a customer (or a judge)! Make it compelling. The judges will love what your customers love.
    10. Your performance may not be simply about dollars and profit. Link to your overall objectives and focus on those.
    11. If you’re uncomfortable sharing dollar figures, use percentages -“Profit grew by 5% year on year.”
    12. If appropriate, use a customer testimonial.
    13. Bring your workplace to life – make the judges feel as if they really see into your business.
    14. Consult the people around you – they will see your business successes differently from you.
    15. Your submission may be humorous or formal (or anything in between). But ensure you are direct with information.
    16. Ensure consistency with the language and tone of your entry. You may use many people to create your entry but have one person write the final submission.
    17. Check your final submission for spelling and grammar so the judges don’t get distracted by errors.

     

    key dates

    Applications open: Monday, 15 April 2024

    Entrants’ workshop: Wednesday, 15 May 2024

    Applications close: Friday, 31 May 2024

    Finalists announced: Wednesday, 3 July 2024

    Awards Gala: Friday, 23 August 2024