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How to make a winning entry: LABC Awards 2019

The LABC Building Excellence Awards will: 

  • Help you gain recognition and increase your reputation within the industry 
  • Reward your team for excellent work
  • Give you a chance to network with clients and peers at the awards
  • Raise your profile and help secure future business
  • Qualify your project for our renowned and respected Grand Finals that attract over 800 attendees from England and Wales

And we know you want to give your entry the best chance of winning, so here are ten top tips on how to get your entry noticed...

Paul Jeal at Carvell House - LABC nominee
Good example 1) Paul Jeal at Carvell House - LABC Residential Site Agent of the Year 2016, London

1) Include detail in your nomination

The good: "This surveyor strongly believes that if you are to take ownership of the construction process then you need to be involved in the whole process from the beginning. This involves commenting and reviewing pre tender information, pre-commencement checks, regular inspections and the need to gain trust from the team to ensure that everyone is taking responsibility for their own areas of work.

The Building Control Surveyor's role is one which he strongly feels is critical. He strives to work closely with them to ensure that all their concerns are closed out and that we have a trusting relationship with them. He believes the local authority’s surveyors are an extra pair of eyes as far as he’s concerned and the need to understand their concerns is vital."

The not so good: "He is quite good at his job"

2)  Give us a choice of attractive photos

The good: We love to see at least three or four good hi-res photos (32mb maximum in total), taken in bright daylight if possible. All of the photos on this page are good examples, apart from the not so good further down...

LABC Best Individual New Home 2016 
Good example 2) Little England Farm House, Hadlow Down - Best Individual New Home, 2016, South East

The not so good: Below isn't a real submitted photograph, but believe it or not, we have received worse: 

Dilapidated house
A not very inspiring interior

4) Make the photos relevant

The good: You've submitted a "change of use" nomination and you give us pictures of the project before it starts and after it's completed. 

The not so good: You've submitted a change of use nomination and only sent in the before pic!

5) Write great descriptions

The good: You've told us what work has been done, e.g. "Phase one of the development, which has taken two years to complete, comprises of a new six storey BREEAM office block, 60 bed hotel, restaurant and car park arranged around a new piazza style public square and transport interchange. This is the first phase of a new 200,000 sq. ft. mixed use commercial quarter in the heart of Bury situated on the former bus interchange located directly opposite Bury rail station."

The not so good: "Shop at 1 High Street, Leeds" 

One Cathedral Square interior - LABC award winners
Good example 3) One Cathedral Square - Best Large Commercial Building 2016, North West 

6) Is there enough relevant information?

Knowing what's relevant, never mind finding an adequate number of words to say it with, can be difficult. So we've detailed what we think will help you complete the form - print off the Judging Criteria (PDF) to help you fill in the relevant information for each question, or have it open while you're filling in the form. 

The good: (This one answers the Performance & Sustainability question): "The nursery building achieved an EPC rating of B/31, exceeding the score expected of a new build. The high levels of thermal insulation possible with timber-framed buildings and modern methods of construction employed by xxx, coupled with excellent air leakage rates and the strong eco credentials of timber construction makes this a highly sustainable building."

The not so good: "It's a white building."

Gleeds - Best partnership LABC winners
Good example 4) Gleeds & Ashfield District Council - Best partnership with a local authority building control team 2016, East Midlands

7) Try using bullets

Try using bullets if you've a lot to say. They're useful for putting your point across clearly and efficiently.

The good: "What makes the partnership so successful is that xxx involve us in projects at feasibility stage which helps us secure projects and influence design for compliance at the very earliest stage. In return xxx benefit from:

  • Pre-application and feasibility advice, often providing valuable guidance which can save money and time in delivering projects. 
  • We offer support to graduates giving friendly advice through a single point of contact. 
  • We have a professional fully qualified team which delivers a valuable service the client appreciates. 
  • This team also provides clients with free CPD events that contribute towards professional obligations required by RICS, RIBA, CABE, CIOB.

The not so good: Pre-application and feasibility advice, often providing valuable guidance which can save money and time in delivering projects. We offer support to graduates giving friendly advice through a single point of contact - this allows building control to make strong contacts with the building surveyors at the start of their career, which will hopefully be maintained through their career using LABC services and we have a professional fully qualified team which delivers a valuable service the cilents appreciate. This team also provides free CPD events that contribute towards professional development obligations required by RICS, RIBA, CABE, CIOB.

8) Give us the right contact details!

You'd be surprised how many people give us incorrect email addresses...

9) Take your time

The good:

  • Get the details right
  • Go back to the form a few times to make sure you've covered everything (hold on to your nomination code for this, or get in touch with us to retrieve it)
  • Speak to everyone involved who may be able to help you sell your nomination. 

The bad: Submitting a "just OK" submission that may get overlooked.

Chineside Cafe - LABC award winner
Good example 5) Chineside Cafe - Best Large Commercial Building 2016, South West

10) Tell us what's unique

The last question is one of the most important: Why your project should win.

The good: Sell your project/partnership/local builder/site manager to us. Include the biggest achievements or selling points. Highlight what's special or innovative about your nomination, how important it is, or the scale of the challenges that were overcome.

The bad: Making it sound like the most unremarkable project/partnership/local builder/site manager that ever was...

Ready to nominate?

Our awards team will be able to help if you have any queries about the awards process and watch this space for the 2019 entry form...