Understanding the judging process

Not sure what’s involved? Here’s an overview of the entire process, end-to-end.

There are five key aspects to it:

● Entry
● Sift
● Application scoring
● First round interviews – traditional interview
● Second round interviews – judges’ tour

Entry: First of all, applicants prepare and submit a written entry for the category or categories they think fit best. The application requests information about financial performance but also asks for some supporting narrative to help put that performance into its proper context.

Sift: It’s our job to go through each and every application and validate it. That means checking that the minimum entry criteria have been met and verifying details like annual turnover by consulting official records. Once we’ve completed the sift, we notify applicants to let them know if they’ve been successful in progressing to the next stage of the process.

Application Scoring: Applications that have made it through the sift stage are then given to the judges for each category. The judges review and score the applications individually and in isolation, with no conferring, and record their scores using our dedicated online judging portal.

First round interviews – traditional interview: Next, the applicants in each category face the judges for the first time in a traditional-style interview. The judges use the first round interviews to delve deeper into the substance of the applications, seeking to close any gaps, answer any as-yet-unanswered questions, and test the validity of any claims made. Again, the judges score on their own using our online portal, and without conferring.

Second round interviews – judges’ tour: Finally, the judges go on tour, visiting the applicants at their own premises or places of work. This stage of the process is totally unique to the BIBAs, and allows the judges to get a real feel for the achievements but also the culture of the applicants as they quiz them and staff on their own turf. Each judge again scores in isolation, via our online portal.

The scores from each judge, across all stages of the judging process, are then automatically calculated and aggregated to identify the winners in each category.

The judging process, and particularly the way judges score in isolation and without conferring, is designed to eliminate the risk of bias that can emerge when judges sit together and discuss their views and opinions, inevitably sometimes influencing the scores of their fellow judges.

If you’re in it to win it this year, you can rest assured that if you make it through to the finals and beyond, it’s because you really deserve it.

BIBAs volunteer judges set to undergo training ahead of first round interviews
Understanding the judging process
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