Categories and criteria

1. Best Use of Technology

The winner of this award will have used technology to create real competitive or operational improvement, as demonstrated by improved quality, customer satisfaction and revenue. The judges will be looking for a business that has used technology to drive sales, streamlined processes and demonstrated creative thinking in re-engineering its operations.

2. Best Adoption of Sustainability

The winner of this award will have embedded as many aspects of sustainability and environmental-awareness as practicable into its business. The judges will be looking for a company that has demonstrated a genuine and passionate belief in the importance of sustainable sourcing, local provenance, health and nutrition, elimination of waste, renewability, recycling and ethical behaviour towards staff, the community and global issues.

3. Social Media Campaign of the Year/Best Use of Social Media

The winner of this award will have demonstrated how social media – in all its aspects – can drive the business and deliver footfall, media presence and sales. The judges will be looking for evidence of imagination, flair, technical knowhow and conceptual expertise in putting together social media strategies and campaigns that achieve the very best results.

4. New Concept of the Year

The winner of this award will have created a new reastaurant idea/style of eating/style of presentation that has captured the imagination of its customers, and has demonstrated strong roll-out potential. The judges will be looking for innovation, a strong business model and scalability of operation.

5. Team of the Year

This award winner will be a team that has broken internal records consistently throughout the year – in terms of sales, customer satisfaction surveys, and quality of serve. Teams can be from head office or from individual venues. The judges will be looking for evidence of successful upselling techniques, customer email sign-up rates, staff retention, bonuses achieved, customer approval, training records and commitment to the working venue and the company – and, of course, exceptional results.

6. Pub Company of the Year (shortlist of 10)

This award winner will be the pub company that has achieved the most impressive annual increase, in terms of sales and bottom-line results, while also delivering on its growth targets and business improvement promises. The judges will be looking for evidence of transformation, and possibly turnaround, as well as new operational efficiencies, higher staff retention and engagement, internal promotions, successful investments in the business, venue upgrades and considerably improved future prospects.  

7. Restaurant Company of the Year (shortlist of 10)

This award winner will be the restaurant company that has achieved the most impressive growth, in terms of sales and bottom-line results, while also delivering on its growth targets and business improvement promises. The judges will be looking for evidence of transformation, and possibly turnaround, as well as new operational efficiencies, higher staff retention and engagement, internal promotions, successful investments in the business, venue upgrades and considerably improved future prospects.  

8. Healthy Eating Award of the Year

This award winner will have demonstrated a major commitment to helping improve the health of its customers by providing healthier menu options. This includes initiatives such as keeping levels of fats, oils, salt and sugar to a minimum, using fresh fruit and vegetables, providing clear and obvious labelling of healthier food options, allergen advice and providing healthy, nutritional meals for children as well as adults. The judges will be looking for evidence of senior leadership on the importance of healthy eating, plus in-depth staff knowledge of the issues and a passion to communicate this to guests.

9. Personality of the Year (nominated shortlist)

This award winner will be an individual who has made the greatest contribution either to their company or to the eating-out sector in the past year. The judges will be looking for any/either of: major step-change they have personally driven in their organisation; substantial financial benefits delivered to shareholders; successful involvement in industry campaigns or highlighting issues of industry concern; and raising the image of the hospitality sector in some exceptional way.   

10. Favourite Pub Company of the Year (plus 4 Regional Winners – (“The pub chain I most like to eat at”)

“The pub chain I most like to eat at”): The winner will be voted on by customers, with companies encouraging as many of their customers to vote for them as the pub restaurant they most enjoy dining at.

11. Favourite Restaurant Company of the Year (plus 4 Regional Winners – “The restaurant chain I most like to eat at”)

The winner will be voted on by customers, with companies encouraging as many of their customers to vote for them as the restaurant company they most enjoy dining at.

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