Here are the Award Categories and their Sponsors for the 2017 Rossendale Business Awards.

You can nominate a business for two of the categories: the Valley at Work Award or the Customer Friendly Business Award (which automatically nominates them for the Valley at Work Award too). Every nominated business is contacted by us, so we can send them an entry form. They choose which other categories they want to enter. If you think that a particular category from the list suits the business you are nominating to a ‘T’, say so on your nomination form and we shall pass the message on.

There are three other (standalone) categories you can nominate for: Enterprising Young Person, Enterprising Woman and Pride of our Valley. These are special awards created to celebrate the achievements of specific groups.

Award Categories Sponsors You can enter this category if… Award Criteria
Valley at Work Award Valley at Work You are a nominated Rossendale business. Every business that is nominated is nominated for this award. All nominated businesses then choose which other categories they wish to enter. This category celebrates the best of the best. The winner of this category will be a local business that is, in the opinion of the judging panel and the Valley at Work committee, the best nominated for any award category this year. The winning business will be a beacon of inspiration for all.
Business of the Year Cassons Your business has 5 or more employees. The winner of this award will be, in the opinion of the judging panel, the most successful and sustainable Rossendale-based business nominated this year with 5 or more employees. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:
• Improved business performance since April 2016
• Sound business and financial planning
• Success in overcoming challenges to drive forward its business plan
• Staff involvement and motivation to meet business objectives
• A clear plan for future growth of the organisation.
New Business Rossendale Borough Council You have started trading since April 1st 2016. The winner of this award will be a new Rossendale-based business (started trading since April 1st 2016) that, in the opinion of the judging panel, has been the most successful start-up. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:
• Performance against initial business objectives
• Sound business, marketing and financial planning
• Success in overcoming challenges to drive forward your business plan
• A team ethos and motivation to meet business objectives.
Artisan Business Rosso Your business utilises traditional methods or involves crafting by hand  The winner of this award will be, in the opinion of the judging panel, the best artisan or craft business nominated this year. This category includes businesses and creative individuals who demonstrate and apply their skill, ranging from food and drink products to music, craft and art etc, but they must use traditional methods or craft by hand. This award is open to any artisan business, regardless of size or how long it has been trading. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:
• How they have used artisanal methods to create a distinctive business offer
• Improved business performance since April 2016
• Success in overcoming challenges to drive forward their plans
Enterprising Young Person Rossendale High Schools You are 18 or younger and have achieved something enterprising. The winner of this award will be a young person or a team of young people (18 or under) from Rossendale that, it in the opinion of the judging panel, has achieved the most from their enterprise education since April 2016.
• This may be through a work experience placement, a school-based enterprise competition or an enterprising project.
• They will have described their enterprising activity, what was achieved and how they have benefitted from this achievement.
• There will be supporting statements from local businesses where appropriate.
Employer of the Year Metis HR Ltd You are a private, public or community sector organisation with an office in Rossendale. The winner of this award will be, in the opinion of the judging panel, Rossendale’s employer of choice: the organisation that best attracts, retains and develops talent that contributes to sustainable success. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate that:
• Organisational performance has improved since April 2016.
• Employees are fully engaged in achieving strategic goals and organisational values.• Effective staff training, development, retention and recruitment practices have contributed to success.• Investment in people has created a more open, collaborative and inclusive work culture.
MicroBusiness Chocolate Kiss Your business has between 2 and 4 employees. The winner of this award will be, in the opinion of the judging panel, the most successful and sustainable Rossendale-based microbusiness nominated this year. The microbusiness will have been trading for more than 2 years. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:
• A clear vision and rationale for the microbusiness
• A strong, evidenced track record of success since April 2016
• Why this is impressive compared to competitors and peers
• Plans for future growth and business development.
Community Business Woodcocks, Haworth and Nuttall You are a not for profit business, social enterprise, charity or community project. The winner of this award will be a nominated Rossendale-based not for profit business or social enterprise that has, in the opinion of the judging panel, has implemented and used innovative practices and approaches to meet community and public service objectives in the last year (since April 2016). Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:
• That social purpose is at the very heart of your organisation
• The impact of the initiative(s) on the local community, employees, etc.
• Solid progress against all your key performance indicators
• Financial stability.
Tourism Award Promoting Rossendale Board Your business is associated with the tourism and leisure sector. The winner of this award will be a Rossendale-based attraction, business or event associated with the tourism, hospitality or leisure business associated with the tourism and leisure sector that has, in the opinion of the judging panel, has made an outstanding contribution to Rossendale’s visitor economy since April 2016. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:
• What their outstanding contribution to the local visitor economy has been.
• Improved business performance since April 2016
• Evidence of high levels of visitor satisfaction with their attraction, business or event.
• Powerful and effective marketing to showcase their attraction, business or event.
Independent Retailer Rawtenstall Chamber of Commerce You are an independent retailer with a physical or virtual retail outlet(s) The winner of this award will be an independent retailer based in Rossendale that, in the opinion of the judging panel, has provided consistent excellence for its customers in the year since April 2016.
This award is open for any independent retailers based in Rossendale who operate traditional retail outlet(s), sell directly to the consumer (via direct mail, farmers markets, etc) and/ or retail online. This includes recent business start- ups and those which have been established for some time. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:
• Improved business performance since April 2016
• Sound business, marketing and financial planning
• Success in overcoming challenges to drive forward the business plan
• All available assets and resources combining to meet business objectives.
Creative Business  GrowTraffic Ltd You are a creative business. The winner of this award will be the most creative Rossendale-based business. This award is open to any creative business, regardless of how long it has been trading. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:
• The nature and philosophy of their creative business.
• How they have used their creative skills to build commercial success since April 2016
• Good business practice.
• Determination to succeed.
Part-time Business Winter Solicitors Your business works around your other personal commitments. This category celebrates the achievements of Rossendale people who have chosen to run a business, social enterprise or community project around the other commitments in their life. Although they are not doing this on a full-time basis, they have achieved the level of success they were looking for. The winner of this award will be, in the opinion of the judging panel, the most successful and sustainable Rossendale-based part-time business nominated this year. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:
• What their part-time business is
• Why running a part-time business was the only solution for them
• How they fit running the business around the other commitments in their lives
• What success means to them
• How they have progressed towards that success
• A clear vision for the future of their business.
Customer Friendly Business Dementia Friendly Rossendale You have been nominated by one or more of your customers. The winner of this award will be a business/organisation in Rossendale that directly serves the public. They will be, in the opinion of the judging panel, the most customer friendly business nominated by their customers this year. What customers say about the business/organisation will carry great influence in the judging process. The winner will also have demonstrated:
• Improving customer service since April 2016
• Improving business performance since April 2016
• Involvement of staff and customers in improving customer service
• Feedback from customers that demonstrates the high quality of their service
• A clear understanding of how to best serve customers who may have dementia.
 Sole Trader Chic Boutique Travel Your business is you.  The winner of this award will be, in the opinion of the judging panel, the most successful an sustainable Rossendale business with 1 employee (the owner) nominated this year. The business will have been trading two or more years. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:

  • A clear vision and rationale for the business.
  • A strong, evidenced track record of success since April 2016.
  • Why this is impressive compared to competitors and peers.
  • Have a plan for development and growth.
Enterprising Woman Dawn Rose Contemporary Jewellery & Accessories  You are a woman in a leadership role in a business organisation The winner of this award will be a woman working in her own business, or within a Rossendale organisation who is a strong, independent, confident leader. She will be, in the opinion of the judging panel, an inspiration for other women who may be considering a leadership role or growing their own business. Nominees will be asked to provide examples of:

  • How their leadership style and skills have brought distinct benefits to their business/organisation.
  • How they have developed an equal opportunities approach that has brought educational or leadership opportunities for other women.
Apprenticeship Accrington and Rossendale College  Your business employs, or has employed recently, at least one apprentice The winner of this award will be the Rossendale organisation that, in the opinion of the judging panel, has best demonstrated the commitment, contribution and success that apprenticeships have brought. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:

  • The highlights of their apprenticeship programme to date.
  • The benefits that apprenticeships have brought to their business.
  • How apprentices have benefitted from training with their business.
  • Future plans for their apprenticeship programme.
Pride of our Valley Hazelwood Homecare Ltd You are an individual, group, association or club The winner of this award will be the individual or club, group or association that is, in the opinion of the judging panel, the Pride of Our Valley. They will have engaged in an activity (this might be an event, bringing together  group to respond to a crisis, fundraising, a campaign etc.) that has made an outstanding contribution to Rossendale life. Nominees will be asked to describe:

  • Their activity and what they were responding to
  • What difference their activity has made
  • What difficulties they have had to overcome to make their activity happen
  • What they have learned from undertaking this activity that might inspire others.
 Service Business Tricketts Insurance Brokers  Your business model is based around service, not production. The winner of this award will be, in the opinion of the judging panel, the most successful and sustainable Rossendale service business nominated this year, regardless of size or how long it has been trading. Nominees will be asked to demonstrate:
• The quality and scope of the service that they deliver to their customers
• A strong, evidenced track record of success since April 2016
• Why this is impressive compared to competitors and peers
• Have a plan for development and growth
Rossendale Free Press Award Rossendale Free Press Your business is engaged in corporate social responsibility activities. The winner of this award will be a local business which has made an outstanding contribution to making Rossendale a better place to live, learn, work or visit. Nominees will be asked to describe:

  • The type of contribution they have made since April 2016
  • The difference their contribution has made
  • The community benefit that has resulted