10 reasons why you should apply for a Queen’s Award for Enterprise

Louise Rushworth, Cambridge Network's Events ManagerWinning one of the prestigious annual Queen’s Awards could make all the difference to your business.(Picture: Martin Hoather, Global Inkjet Systems)

Queens Award Certificate on a wall next to trophy cabinet. Image courtesy of Global Inkjet Systems

Here are 10 good reasons why winners report benefiting from worldwide recognition, increased commercial value, wider exposure and a boost to staff morale:

  1. Your company will be recognised around the world as an outstanding British brand.  You can use the Queen’s Award emblem on your website and all corporate communications, earning credibility at home and overseas, particularly in the US.


  1. It’s great for press coverage. Julie Spence, OBE QPM, The Lord-Lieutenant for Cambridgeshire, Her Majesty the Queen’s representative in the region, conducts an awards ceremony at your offices for you, your supply chain, stakeholders, customers and staff., with the event covered by local media.  You receive a certificate, signed by the Queen.


  1. You are likely to increase sales.  Winning an award is good for business: ‘73% of winners in the International Trade category directly attributed increased sales to winning a Queen’s Award’**


  1. It highlights the credibility of the region.  While flooding, Brexit and Covid-19 have impacted the region, this year the awards will allow businesses to input financial results to 2019 instead of 2020. It could still be worth considering an application even if this year has seen a dip in the economy.


  1. It’s not just for big businesses. Companies of all sizes can apply, from two employees upwards, if you file your tax returns and can demonstrate strong corporate social responsibility. Winners are judged on quality, with 31 winners having 10 employees or less.


  1. The categories are possibly wider than you initially thought. Awards are for Innovation, International Trade and a newly expanded Sustainable Development award.  The latter is now aligned to 17 UN sustainable development goals, meaning you could focus on a range of relevant areas.

There is also a Promoting Opportunity (through social mobility) award, which has different deadlines and is being reinvigorated this year. If you have helped socially disadvantaged individuals to progress, perhaps via an apprenticeship scheme, this could be for you.


  1. It’s easy to apply. Download the forms as soon as you can and ask relevant people in your organisation to complete ‘their’ sections. Ideally you need people with a strategic view and at least one person with good writing skills.  


  1. There’s help available from real people, and useful feedback if you don’t win.

You can contact the small team at the Queen’s Awards directly. Their contact details are on Julie Spence’s last slide here (link goes to a 30 minute youtube presentation, given by Julie to a Cambridge Network audience on 15th July 2020.

If you’re not successful this time, the feedback is also a very useful document.


  1. It’s good for employee morale and can boost your recruitment. Winning is a celebration of all you’ve achieved so far and enhances your reputation as an employer.


  1. Lastly, two employees get to visit Buckingham Palace.  What’s not to like about that?


** Research of international trade winners 2012-15 conducted by University of Strathclyde.


Useful resources:

  • The competition for the 2020 awards is open now, the closing date is 9 September.  More information, and how to apply, can be found on the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise information pages. Winners are announced on 21st April.
  • This blog heavily relies on Julie Spence’s presentation to Cambridge Network about the Queen’s Award on 15th July 2020, which you can watch on our YouTube channel


Recent winners in our region include: 

Official site is: www.gov.uk/queens-awards-for-enterprise

LinkedIn: linkedin/company/the-queens-award-for-enterprise

Twitter: @TheQueensAwards