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The BQF Academy Continuous Improvement Award 2020


The BQF Academy Continuous Improvement Award

040 BQF UK Excellence Awards 2020 - The BQF Academy Continuous Improvement Award.

Continuous improvement is the never-ending drive for excellence which simply becomes what we all do every day… but probably no surprise to anyone it isn’t as simple as it sounds.  In reality it takes everyone, yes everyone to play their role in creating this cultural way or working.

This award seeks to recognise organisations or teams who are striving to create a working environment where everyone is equipped, skilled and empowered to identify and deliver improvements every day.

Why apply?

A continuous improvement journey can have a number of bumps along the way as organisations transform and cultures may need to change. Why not use the opportunity of this new award for 2020 to recognise your organisation or your team for what has been achieved so far? It will help to reinforce the positive behaviours and good practices leading to improved commitment. Is it time for recognition on a bigger stage for what has been achieved?

Who should apply?

This award welcomes entries from organisations and teams that are proud of their Continuous Improvement journey.

How to apply?

Entry is simple – by completion of an online application form and submission of supporting evidence.

Application Criteria

The judges would like to hear from those who are making strides on this journey and proud of what has been achieved so far.  Whether that’s creating and demonstrating new Leadership behaviours to encourage and reinforce this way of working or a team who are working together to deliver valuable improvements for their customers by being empowered to make a difference.  The judges will be looking for what the aims are, how people have been engaged and an insight into the processes, tools, techniques and reinforcement strategies being used to deliver successful outcomes.


PLEASE NOTE: Gold and Gold Plus members are entitled to 1 free entry to either Excellence in Awards or the Lean Six Sigma Academy Award. Silver members are entitled to a half price entry to either Excellence in Awards or the Lean Six Sigma Academy Award.

£300 + VAT

per entry

£500 + VAT

per entry

£150 + VAT

per entry

Dates for your diary

Entries close

7 February 2020

Judging begins

February 2020

Shortlist will be announced

23 March 2020

Ceremony night

Autumn 2020 – date to be confirmed

Award Judges

James Aherne

Director at PA Consulting

James Aherne

“I am the Director at PA Consulting, the global innovation and transformation consultancy headquartered in London.  For over 20 years I have worked with many organisations, across most sectors, to support and drive their transformations towards operational excellence.

Planning and achieving excellence comes down to doing three things very well. These are: creating a clear vision underpinned by strategic objectives; planning for engagement and sponsorship at all levels but most importantly at operational management (“middle management”) levels; and, not overplaying the reliance on ‘tools’ to achieve and sustain the results.  Individually these things are not difficult to achieve but I would estimate over 75% of organisations fail in one of more of these areas and subsequently do not achieve meaningful and sustained value from their transformation programmes.

I have had the pleasure and honour of serving on the prestigious UK Excellence Award panel for many years and I’m now delighted to be part of the new Continuous Improvement Excellence Award.  Achieving a culture of CI is an easy thing to say but a difficult thing to achieve and I’m very much looking forward to reviewing the submissions and helping excellent organisations be widely recognised for success in this area!”

Mandy Urwin

Change Maker at Boomster Consulting

Mandy Urwin

“Change Maker – Transforming Businesses by building their change capability.

I am experienced in designing, developing, teaching/coaching method agnostic principles and practical approaches to Change, Programme/Project Management, Business Improvement and Transformation. Bringing passion and energy into the workplace; helping people and organisations to leverage practical change tools & techniques to achieve change with sustainable results. Passionate about making change less impactful and stressful, while achievable – benefiting customers, business and people.

I have 25+ years’ experience of deploying all levels of Change – cultural and strategic to continuous improvement. Certified Change Management Master Practitioner and Programme and Project Management Master Practitioner, with a strong reputation for quickly assessing needs and proposing solutions that fit the priorities. Quickly building trusted relationships through honesty, integrity and authenticity.

Inaugural chair of Business Improvement apprenticeship trailblazer EDG, led the development of all Business Improvement and transformation apprenticeships across over 100 leading UK Employers of all industries/public sectors.

I’m passionate about the potential of continuous improvement in business not just to achieve great outcomes for the customer and business but as a way to really engage an organisations people in making change a positive experience for all.”

Carrie Parker

Continuous Improvement at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer

“As a Senior Leader within the Firm, I am responsible for the end to end delivery of Continuous improvement transformational activity within Freshfields, with activity currently focused around significant change initiatives designed to re-imagine the way support services are provided to the firm.

Over the past 20 years, I have held several senior roles within logistics, customer service, business services and supply chain functions, delivering operational and customer excellence, within the telecoms and legal sectors, at Domestic and international levels.

At the heart of my success, a mantra of supporting individuals and teams to build increasing capability to implement a maturity in using CI methodology and toolsets, at all levels. I am passionate about recognising success in others and have previously been a Judge and strategic board member for Contact Centre Management Awards (CCMA, ECCCA), judging many categories such Business improvement Manager and Quality Manager of the year awards as examples.

My motivation is being able to recognise and reinforce individuals as well as a team’s confidence, to make improvements daily, and in doing so improving the customers’ experience. Especially where there is a culture of bottom-up continuous improvement, and a contribution to the to all the communities in which we work.

I enjoy judging, it provides exposure to see the fantastic achievements from fellow professionals.  Its now in my ability to give something back to the BQF, for all the help, and support, that the organisation has provided me, and my teams with, ever since I first entered the continuous improvement realm. The BQF have been invaluable to me, and it is a personal honour to support the BQF in such a positive way.”

Awards FAQs

Can I nominate more than one person for this award?

Yes, you can enter as many individuals as you like for this Leadership Award.

Can I nominate myself for this award?

Individuals cannot apply themselves but should be nominated by a reporting line manager/Head of/Director or previous employer.  The nomination should be endorsed by an additional peer, stakeholder or client.

When is entry deadline?

Entry deadlines for the Innovation, Lean Six Sigma and Leadership awards are all on the 31st of October.

Awards Ceremony

The 2020 awards ceremony is taking place at 8 Northumberland Avenue in the city of London.

2019 Winners

Find out more about the 2019 winners from the UK Excellence Awards ceremony.