Inclusive business awards open for nominations

23 July 2019

If your organisation has led the way on positive and innovative change, enhancing the experience of disabled employees and customers as a result, then Business Disability Forum would like to hear from you.

Two people smile at then camera whilst holding an award, a background features a logo with disability smart awards on it

Supported by Barclays, Business Disability Forum’s Disability Smart Awards showcase and celebrate employers and service providers which have demonstrated a clear and ongoing commitment to deliver for all customers and employees.

This year there are 11 Awards categories. These include workplace experience, technology, diversity and inclusion practitioner, global leader and the popular Disabled People’s Choice Award. There are also four new award categories around design, influencing, customer service, and communications.

Winners of last year’s awards included, Liverpool Football Club, Microsoft, Gatwick Airport and West Midlands Police.

Diane Lightfoot, CEO, Business Disability Forum, said;

“Through the Disability Smart Awards, we want to celebrate success, whilst challenging other organisations to become more accessible by raising the bar on inclusive business.

“Please help lead the way on change by sharing with us what your organisation is doing to ensure the needs of all employees and customers are met.”

Microsoft won the technology category last year for using cutting edge technologies to ensure their widely used products were as accessible to as many customers as possible.

Hector Minto, Microsoft’s Tech Evangelist for Europe, Middle East and Africa, spoke about the impact of the Disability Smart win at Business Disability Forum’s Annual Conference in April. He said:

“Winning the Disability-Smart award was very good for us, not just because of the Windows work but for what people don't see, which is the number of employees with disabilities working as engineers on the product. It is not somebody doing something for people with disabilities, it is blind engineers, it is deaf engineers, it is people working and bringing their life experience to our product to make it better.

“There is so much built into the product that empowers people routinely. But it really took the Disability Smart Award to get the message out clearly to the business world and the education world.”

Categories for the 2019 Disability Smart Awards are as follows:

  1. Disability Smart Senior Champion Award 2019
  2. Disability Smart Design Award (new category)
  3. Disability Smart Workplace Experience Award 2019 (sponsored by Microlink)
  4. Disability Smart Influencer Awards 2019 (new category)
  5. Disability Smart Technology for All Award 2019 (sponsored by Microlink)
  6. Disability Smart Customer Service Award 2019 (new category)
  7. Disability Smart Communications & Marketing Campaign Award 2019 (new category)
  8. Disability Smart Global Leader Award 2019
  9. Disability Smart Multinational Organisation Award 2019
  10. Disability Smart Diversity & Inclusion Practitioner Award 2019
  11. Disabled Peoples’ Choice Award 2019

To find out more about the awards categories and how to enter, visit our awards page.

All entries must be received by 20 September 2019. Winners will be announced at the Disability Smart Awards Ceremony on 23 October 2019.

For further information, please contact sarahb@businessdisabilityforum.org.uk or call 07980616108.

Notes to editors

Business Disability Forum is a leading non-profit membership organisation which exists to transform the life chances of disabled people. With over 25 years’ experience, it brings together business leaders, disabled people, and Government to understand what needs to change to improve the life opportunities and experiences of disabled people in employment, economic growth, and society more widely. Business Disability Forum provides practical, evidence-based, strategic solutions for businesses to recruit, retain, and provide inclusive products and services to disabled people. For more information, please visit http://businessdisabilityforum.org.uk/about-us/