As CILT is set to celebrate excellence with another year of its annual awards, we caught up with Harald Hamley, Annual Awards Committee Chair, to find out more about this year’s event, what to expect and his tips for submitting a winning entry.
How long have you been chair of the judging panel and what do you like about it?
I have chaired it for about 12 years. That’s a long time, but it’s my way of giving something back to the Institute. I like the interaction with other judges, leading practitioners in their own right; I like the fact that every year the entry throws up something new and interesting. Judging really does let you see the way that new trends are developing and how the sector is changing to meet the times.
How have the awards developed over the years?
We have done a really good job of the celebrating and rewarding achievement side of our mission. As the Institute has changed – for example, with Women in Logistics and operations management – and we’ve reflected that in our changing award categories and in our judging panels. However, I want us to do more about the other part of our mission: helping to spread best practice. I felt the videos made for this year’s celebration in March were a real step forward. It was great to hear the winners talking about their achievements and their teams and showcasing their own workplaces. Our finalists represent a resource of ideas and experience that we should engage more across the board in our Institute.
What advice do you have for those looking to submit an entry?
First, read the guidelines. The judges mark to a standard template, so if you don’t provide those basics, such as ‘Describe the business benefits’, you won’t score highly. Second, make it an interesting and inspiring story. Judges are human and have to read through a lot of entries.
Why would you encourage an individual or organisation to submit an entry?
We are the chartered awards with decades of experience; we are independent, without an agenda; and your project will be judged by experts in your field or sector. That’s a genuine mark of approval that no other award scheme can offer and achieving it can do wonders for your profile and brand.
Why is it important to celebrate success in transport and logistics?
I’ve always answered this before by saying ‘because logistics is the invisible profession’. With the pandemic, we suddenly got a level of visibility and coverage that I could never imagine, but I still think that logisticians can be taken for granted and we need to do more to blow our own trumpet.
Last year was a challenging year, but one that saw a lot of change and innovation.
What are you hoping to see in this year’s entries?
Not the least was the innovation in the awards. The team in Corby did a fabulous job to create a digital celebration at such short notice and, as I said, to create the videos that provided such an intimate insight into our winners. I think that were major achievements in logistics in coping with the pandemic and Brexit; but as most entries were in by May 2020, we didn’t see much of those. I’d like to see those organisations that have taken those fire-fighting innovations and built them into something that is sustainable for the future. That includes sustainable in the sense of caring for society and the environment, as well as their people and business.
This year’s award categories are:
- Environmental Improvement
- Freight Transport
- Health, Safety & Wellbeing
- Operations Management
- Passenger Transport
- People Development
- Supply Chain Innovation
- Technology Innovation
- Transport Policy and Planning
- Warehouse Operations
- Rising Star
- Diversity Champion
To find out more and to enter this year’s awards: www.ciltuk.org.uk/Events/National-Events/CILT-Awards-for-Excellence