Ethics and confidentiality
In our role as award entry writers, we are put in a position of trust by both our clients and awards organisers. Our clients need to know we will not mishandle their confidential information or misrepresent them, and awards organisers need to know that we will not try and mislead the judges. For this reason, we work to a strict code of conduct.
Conflict of interest
We do not write competing submissions for the same single-winner awards categories. However, for some awards where there are multiple winners (e.g. The Queen’s Award for Enterprise and The Brandon Hall Awards), this rule does not apply. If a scheme has regional winners then this policy applies at a regional level only (e.g. Chamber Awards and IoD Director of the Year Awards).
If we do not have a booking for an awards category, then we may offer a submission review service for clients writing submissions in-house for these categories. However, please note that hiring us to review rather than write an entry does not secure exclusivity for an awards category.
Honesty in submissions
When we write awards submissions our aim is to do you justice and help find the evidence needed to substantiate your claims. We do not endorse or encourage exaggeration or fabrication.
Being honest about your chances
We are not the judges, so cannot predict with certainty what will get through to the finals or win. We will, however, use our extensive experience to give you an honest assessment of your chances. For example, if our search for evidence to prove you are outstanding fails to uncover anything that might earn you a place in the finals, then we might possibly recommend pulling the plug on the submission. This does not mean we won’t charge for time already invested, but it does mean saving time, money and disappointment in the long run.
We regularly sign non-disclosure agreements and are always happy to do so. Whether we sign one or not, we will treat all information provided as confidential and will not share it outside the Boost team. We will also not publish the fact that we work with you on our website or in marketing communications of any sort without your permission.
Honesty in charging
When a quote or upper limit is agreed for a project, we will only charge up to this point.
Boost will not accept any commission from awards organisers for encouraging people to enter their awards. We also do not own or part-own any awards programmes.
Personal honours and Queen’s honours
We do not ever help individuals self-nominate for honours schemes like MBEs, CBEs, Peerages etc. These schemes do not welcome self-nomination, so from an ethical standpoint, we have chosen not to be involved in any way with such activity. The Cabinet Office specifically states that it ‘does not endorse the use of fee-charging drafting services’. We therefore respect this.
An honest win rate
The good news is that we are so successful that we do not need to fiddle our figures to make us look more successful than we really are.
As the first award entry specialists, rather than PR specialists or journalists who dabble in awards, we have mastered techniques that are unique to Boost and that dramatically increase the likelihood of our clients winning credible awards (which often have 30-100 applications per category), and almost 40% of our submissions win.
Our win rate is calculated by dividing the number of genuine third-party awards won by the number of entries we wrote or co-wrote for clients (across the entire time we have been trading).
We do not employ any of the following tactics (that we have seen amongst less reputable marketing and PR service providers) to make them appear more successful when it comes to award entry writing:
- Treating commendations as wins.
- Run any type of home-made awards programme where we act as the awarding body as well as the award entry writers – this sounds shocking, but it happens.
- Focus our clients on awards that are easy to win, but lack prestige. Our aim is to add value to their brands, and unknown or “pay-to-win” awards do not achieve this.
Our corporate social responsibility
- We are leading the awards industry in terms of ethics by co-founding the Independent Awards Standards Council and The Awards Trust Mark Scheme.
- We write a lot of CSR award submissions, and have seen numerous examples of best practice which could apply to other organisations. We regularly share these tips and tricks and help clients improve their corporate social responsibility as a result.
- We raise money through fundraising (mainly for Chestnut Tree House Children’s Hospice) and have a policy of sponsoring clients in their fundraising whenever they ask.
- We actively try to reduce our carbon footprint by rigorously recycling in our offices, supporting home working, travelling primarily by train to client meetings and creating an almost paperless operation.