How our awards work - judging

Our judging process

Integrity, equality and inclusivity are the guiding principles which underpin the Telstra Best of Business Awards judging process.

What our judges look for

Our diverse panel of judges work diligently to ensure the winners in each category are contributing to Australia’s economic, social and cultural prosperity.

Economic sustainability

  • Makes sound financial decisions and manages cash flow effectively
  • Is profitable over a period and can articulate potential profits
  • Sustains goals and purpose over a period and can outline potential future impact
  • Has proven examples of achieving mission-critical goals and objectives
  • Considers competitor behaviours and how to counteract them
  • Has examples of how they’ve found better ways to reach new markets
  • Exceeds customer expectations and delivers brilliant experiences

Operational effectiveness and technology adoption

  • Harnesses technology in innovative ways to move the business forward
  • Pivots to adapt to market changes
  • Has developed new internal processes, production or services to operate more effectively
  • Takes a creative approach to solving customer problems
  • Tenaciously pushes the boundaries to maintain success

Progressive leadership and culture

  • Has a visionary, future-facing business strategy
  • Takes a courageous approach to risk, and adapts when necessary
  • Fosters internal team culture by celebrating innovation, collaboration and diversity
  • Invests in employee development and growth
  • Is committed to reducing bias of any kind at any level and approaches hiring accordingly
  • Proactively engages with diverse groups to understand different perspectives and apply them to their business
  • Approaches customer feedback as an asset and uses it to enhance the business

Social and community contribution

  • Purposefully contributes to the wellbeing of the communities they serve, or society in general
  • Promotes the importance of social impact internally, and demonstrates this externally
  • Provides or contributes measurable value to their communities or society 
  • Behaves and operates in a transparent and ethical manner

We focus on the positive impacts made by small and medium business

For businesses entering these categories, judges will be looking for all the ways they've helped move Australia forward.

Positive and sustainable impact

  • Is proactively finding solutions for a prevalent problem, gap or need
  • Understands the overall significance of their service, product, solution or contribution
  • Has a plan to achieve their vision for change or progress
  • Can produce measurable evidence of how they’ve contributed to a key issue within their chosen category
  • Creates a visible difference, provides value or delivers a marked effect on people, communities or industries
  • Has created a legacy of positive impact that is sustained and will stand the test of time
  • Possesses the scalability and growth potential to increase their impact or contribution

Thought leadership and innovation

  • Takes an innovative approach to forge new paths and create progress for the category
  • Uses creative and strategic thinking to solve problems and overcome barriers for their chosen challenge
  • Challenges the status quo by celebrating and fostering fresh thinking in a way that demonstrably inspires others

Commitment and perseverance

  • Purposefully seeks to motivate, create and affect positive change or progress
  • Shows passion and courage in achieving their current and future goals
  • Tenaciously approaches and overcomes any challenge

Our 2024 program dates

Nominations open

All year round

We accept nominations all year round. If you know an exceptional business moving Australia forward, nominate them today.

Stage 2 entries

2 May - 24 May 2024

For this stage, the goal is to gain a deeper understanding of your business and give you an opportunity to expand on your answers from stage 1.

Stage 3 entries

26 June - 17 July 2024

If your Stage 2 entry is successful, you will be able to complete Stage 3. 

Nominate an exceptional business, even your own!

Have a question?

Find answers to your frequently asked questions.

Contact us

Speak with our Awards Team and call 1800 AWARDS Monday - Friday 9am - 5pm (AEDT).