Industry awards help spread best practice, provide good publicity for the winning organisations, a boost to team morale and a useful addition to the CV.
Not surprising then that there were 787 entries to last year's National Training Awards (see News Roundup below). The satisfaction felt by each winner can only have been slightly tempered by the fact that there were 57 other winners.
The National Training Awards have been useful in raising the profile of training and development, but the DfEE-funded initiative often seems to recognise organisations using NVQs or working towards IIP recognition, and this year that tendency will become explicit. Instead of entering the competition as individuals, employers or providers, the categories will be based around the use of areas such as IIP, ILAs, New Deal and Union Learning Funds as frameworks for learning.
If this approach reveals new, successful ways of using these initiatives, it will be a useful change of direction, but it is all the more reason why broader, more open awards, such as those run by Personnel Today, have an important part to play in recognising innovation.
Training and our partner in the TD2000 campaign The Industrial Society believe there is room for a further award which will highlight effective ways of integrating T&D into the fabric of the business and raising its status - hence the launch of the TD2000 Award, kindly sponsored by Raytheon Training. You can read all about it on pages 9, 10 and 20.
Many T&D people tell us their greatest challenges are evaluation, senior-level influence and integration into the rest of the business, so these are the focus of the award. If you believe your T&D team is successful in at least two of these three areas, we urge you to enter; best practice is sorely needed in these areas and you will be doing a great service to the profession.