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The 2024 Awards for Achievement

When, where & how

To be held on Thursday 14 November, the 26th Annual Awards for Achievement aim to celebrate the outstanding achievements of both individuals and companies as they progress diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) in the UK financial services industry.

We are now inviting nominations for both the individual awards and the company awards.  The 2024 awards also see the launch of an individual student award and a second award to honour the best university society that is helping ensure future employees of the UK financial services industry do not face discrimination due to their gender.

We look forward to announcing the judges, sponsors and speakers in the coming weeks, as well as our line up of hosts and speakers for the four events scheduled for 14 November – a list designed to ensure that we inspire everyone who joins in our celebrations.

You have until 5 July to submit nominations.

Individual awards

Award for Achievement

Presented to an individual in the most senior of industry roles, the winner will have shown determination, dynamism and daring in their working life and be seen as a role model for the industry. Bringing their experience to further diversity, equity and inclusion beyond their own organisation into the financial services industry, they support women and will have had a significant impact, driven change and shown the extent of that change through documented and measured successes.

 

Inclusive Leader Award

This is a senior professional leading change to ensure women enjoy an equal voice, visibility and access to opportunities in their firms. Through personal commitment, application and dedication, they promote and inspire women to help them achieve their full potential. Their standard of inclusion and approach to DE&I should become the norm, rather than the exception, setting best practices and methods for future inclusive leaders.

 

Future Leader Award

Celebrates someone aged 35 or younger (on 31 May 2025) who has had an exceptional impact within an organisation with regard to DE&I, either as a burgeoning role model or by leading progress. This person is shaping their company’s business culture and setting an example for their colleagues and peers. This individual has been singled out for their professional performance by their firm, demonstrates ambition and has already seen career success, while helping others to also progress.

Tech Leader Award

Celebrates an outstanding contribution within digital or tech disciplines in financial services. This award recognises someone who is leading the tech agenda, either as a thought leadership, technical expert or an innovator. This individual has demonstrated their passion and innovation in either a project or in leveraging technology to advance the work of their organisation and improve gender equality for their organisation, as well as for the financial services industry as a whole.

 

Mentor of the Year Award

This is someone who has consistently demonstrated the importance of mentoring, having given up time to support one or more mentees over the course of the last year, at a minimum. The submission highlights how they support their mentee(s) in achieving their objectives and how mentee(s) were able to progress/develop following their support. The submission should include endorsements from their mentee(s). The nominated mentor can be new to mentoring or a seasoned hand.

Volunteer of the Year Award

A WIBF volunteer who has served during the previous year and is seen as having provided an outstanding contribution to WIBF beyond their initial volunteer remit. The winner for this award will be selected by WIBF individual members through a voting process and through endorsements from their fellow volunteers, based on how this person has stood out as a volunteer, and whether their contribution has supported success for a WIBF project, pillar or region, or has generally championed WIBF's broader aims.

Corporate & SME awards

Best DE&I Innovation Award

Good ideas can change the world. The challenge of delivering gender equity requires organisations to think differently about their work with colleagues, communities and wider society. This award recognises an organisation that is leading the way in supporting DE&I in new and innovative ways. Whether celebrating a project or team that has delivered innovation, the submission’s focus may be on a business division, specialist function, community network, or a time-limited project.

Most Successful Returners Strategy Award

In a sector where women continue to be are significantly underrepresented at senior levels, too few firms have developed (or even established) a returners strategy as part of their overall recruitment approach. Submissions must highlight the drivers to implementing the strategy, how it is sponsored and communicated, how it has developed and progressed since its inception and how it’s part of a longer-term strategic approach to DE&I.

Best SME DE&I Innovation Award

This award follows that of the (large) corporate category, but is this time focused on organisations with an annual turnover of less than £250m. It recognises an organisation that is leading the way in supporting gender equality in new and innovative ways and can celebrate a project or team that has delivered innovation driving gender diversity, equity and inclusion. The category recognises that SMEs often have fewer resources to develop projects, but are often more nimble and are often able to innovate more easily.

Student awards - NEW FOR 2024!

Student of the Year Award

This award highlights the specific contributions and achievements of an individual student who has actively worked to promote diversity and inclusion within the financial services industry. Recognising the money funding female students may be much lower than male students, this award is only open to women. This new category will celebrate the successful initiatives, leadership and impact of the award winner in fostering a more diverse and equitable environment within their academic or professional communities.

Most Inclusive University Society Award

This award seeks to recognise the university society for undergraduate students that has demonstrated the highest level of exceptional dedication and effectiveness in promoting gender diversity and equity, while empowering women who are either already employed by or looking to become employed with the banking and finance sectors. This second new award is to honour their efforts in organising events, providing resources and fostering a supportive community to encourage women's participation and advancement in financial services and related professional services and tech industries.

 

Award FAQs

  • Submissions have to be put forward by a WIBF member - you can be an individual member or you can put one forward if your organisation is a WIBF corporate partner.

     

    Individual members cannot nominate themselves for an award – you have to ask a peer or your company to put you forward.

     

    For the new student category, the person making the nomination needs to be a WIBF member, but the nominee doesn't need to be.  The nominee must also be an undergraduate student.

  • The person being nominated does not need to be a member, as long as the organisation they work for is a corporate partner, sponsor or SME/association member.

     

     

  • No, all nominees must be based in the UK.

  • Click on the links below each of the award categories to access each of the submission forms. If you have any problems accessing the pages, please email [email protected] and one of the awards team will get back to you as soon as we can.

     

    We regret that any submissions sent as attachments to this email address cannot be processed due to the number of entries we typically receive.

  • Each award category has a number of questions that need to be answered. We also ask for testimonials to help us verify the impact/change the award nominee has affected.

     

    There is the downloadable pdf attached to each of the award form so that you can plan what to include in your submission.

     

    Please note that judges may also look at your social media profiles.

     

    If you have any problems accessing the nomination forms please email [email protected] and one of the awards team will get back to you.

    • All award nominations need to have been submitted by midnight on Friday 5 July.
    • The awards team will then review the submissions and work with the judges to create a shortlist.
    • The shortlist will be published in September 2024. This shortlist is then reviewed again in more detail as part of the tried and tested review process by our panel of judges.
    • The 2024 winners will be announced on Thursday 14 November, with the full list of winners posted on the WIBF website and on our social media channels on the following day, Friday 15 November 2024.
    • Please note that the two student award categories will be judged by the Future Leaders Shadow Board and supported by the Student Engagement Strategy Team.

Your help needed

We would welcome your help in supporting our awards through sponsorship. We have a few categories open to sponsors, which would not only showcase your position as a diversity leader in financial services but which has been shown to help recruit new and experienced talent to your organisation.

We also welcome introductions to potential speakers and hosts. Keynote speakers have included Dame Amanda Blanc, Chief Executive of Aviva and Champion of the government’s Women in Finance initiative; Alison Rose, the first female CEO of a UK high street bank; Dame Inga Beale, the first female CEO of Lloyds of London in its 328-year history; and Mark Carney, the former governor of the Bank of England. We are currently looking for hosts for our events in Birmingham, Bristol and Edinburgh.