BEEAs Categories

The shortlist for the British Engineering Excellence Awards 2016 has been announced - view the full shortlist

Consultancy of the Year

Sponsor: The Institution of Mechanical Engineers

Entrants to this category should be able to demonstrate innovative and timely solutions to engineering problems posed to them by their customers.

Other factors to be taken into account will include the ratio of consultancy staff to the number of projects delivered, number of staff applied to those projects and the success of the projects.

Judges will also be interested in seeing how the consultancy has developed during the last five years and how it plans to grow its business.

Design Engineer of the Year

Sponsor: maxon motor

This category recognises the all round contribution of engineers to the success of their employers. The winning entrant – who should be nominated by another engineer – will have produced a range of innovative designs within strict budgetary and time constraints, often finding solutions that improve on the initial design brief.

Likely to be a leader, the winner will also be making a broader contribution to the industry – perhaps by participating in professional bodies – and working to promote engineering as a career.

Entries should be accompanied by a brief CV, outlining the nominee’s career and achievements.

Design Team of the Year

Sponsor: Premier EDA

Entrants into this category will be able to demonstrate the successful use of teamwork in the creation of an engineering or electronic product or system, as well as those combining both elements.

The successful entry will outline the team’s composition and how the members interacted. It should also explain how design decisions enabled the team to work within a target budget and how well the team met project milestones, with particular emphasis on problem solving.

To be eligible, the design process must have started no earlier than 1 January 2013 and the system must have been on the market or delivered to the customer no later than 1 June 2016.

In order to help the Judges, the entry must be accompanied by, as a minimum:

  • Top level project specification points
  • Evidence of how closely the project milestones were met
  • A product/system brief
  • Details of the key people involved and their roles within the project
  • The amount of time allocated to the project.

Materials Application of the Year

Sponsor: Engineering Materials

The choice of material can make or break an engineering product, so the Judges will be looking for evidence of how the properties of a particular material (or material combination) have been exploited in order to solve a design challenge.

Entries should outline the performance issues which needed to be solved, how the material was selected and how that material enabled or improved the performance of a product or system.

Please note that entries for materials will not be accepted.

Projects entered into this category must have been available commercially since 1 January 2016 and the design process should not have started earlier than 1 January 2014.

New Product of the Year (Electronic)

Sponsor: New Electronics

In this category, the Judges will be looking for an electronic product or component that addresses a particular market need and which brings a significant performance improvement; either over a previous product or over competitive devices.

The judges will be looking for evidence of how the need for the product (or upgrade) was assessed. In the case of an upgrade, evidence must be provided of how the performance was improved.

Products entered into this category must have been available commercially since 1 January 2016 and the design process should not have started earlier than 1 January 2014.

New Product of the Year (Mechanical)

Sponsor: Eureka!

The Judges will be looking for an engineering product in which an innovative approach has been used to meet a particular market need.

The judges will be looking for evidence of how the need for the product was assessed, along with an indication of time to market. Other considerations that may impress the judges are designs that are take advantage of new manufacturing processes and products that have exceeded their design brief or met it under-budget or ahead of time. A successful production introduction will also be looked on favourably.

The design process for products entered into this category must not have started earlier than 1 January 2014

Small Company of the Year

Sponsor: Innovate UK

Small companies represent a substantial proportion of all businesses in the UK. But just because they’re small doesn’t always mean they aren’t successful.

To succeed in this category, entrants must provide evidence of a sound business plan, a product or service that meets a market need and the successful reception of that product. The Judges will also want to see evidence of the entrant either competing successfully with much larger rivals or exploiting a viable market niche.

Companies entering this category will have no more than 20 employees.

Start-Up of the Year

Sponsor: Cambridge Consultants

Entries for this category will only be accepted from companies developing mechanical and/or electronic products and which were established no earlier than 1 January 2011

The Start Up of the Year will be developing mechanical and/or electronic products or offering engineering based services to customers in the UK and elsewhere. The successful company will have a sound business plan that supports its operation. This should include evidence of financial performance, market share goals and the company’s investors. If it doesn’t already have a product on the market, it should be planning to be launching before the end of 2016.

In order to support the application, the entrant must show a successful reception for its product(s) or service and evidence of orders. Companies which have developed their technology from scratch may be preferred over those ‘spun out’ from other organisations.

Young Design Engineer of the Year

Sponsor: RS Components

Young people joining the engineering profession are often required to ‘hit the ground running’ – to apply the knowledge gained from their studies and their enthusiasm to a range of projects. The judges will select the winner of this category by taking a range of factors into account, including: the knowledge which has been applied by the young engineer; the contribution made to projects; and the degree of innovation required.

The judges will also be influenced by the nominee’s personal qualities, including their motivation to act as an ambassador for their chosen profession. Entrants must be nominated by their employer and have finished their studies or training no earlier than Summer 2012. It is unlikely that anyone older than 28 years at the time of entry will be considered.