Builders' Merchants News

Follow the path to a successful nomination.

Five weeks to go for your bid to be recognised as the best

Published:  04 August, 2011

UK: Are you the best? With only five weeks to go for nominations for the 10th Builders' Merchants Awards for Excellence, merchants, their suppliers and even their customers are being urged to nominate their chosen builders' merchant success stories of 2011. Here's how to do it...


Trained employees can raise the efficiency of a company because they are more confident about their products and services and are more willing to make that sale. There are different kinds of training – orientation, skills training, and initiative training. This should include some form of benchmarking or assessment.

The categories for your nominations are:

Builders' Merchant Training Initiative. What you'll need to include in your nomination are how you went about setting up the training, what results this has had and how you followed up those results with tangible facts.

For example, has there been increased job satisfaction and morale among employees? Increased motivation? Greater efficiencies in processes, resulting in financial gain? Increased capacity to adopt new technologies and methods? Reduced employee turnover?

Trainee of the Year. For the outstanding trainee in your company, how did they start their training and why? How have they developed their role within your company to bring real benefits to the business thanks to this training?

Show off the merchandise

Your customers have big dreams. It's up to you to grab that aspiration with captivating displays. A display area's main is to visually stimulate. Customers like to see, touch and feel because doing so makes them more confident about the choices they make. Display areas require drama, colour, lighting and visually striking layouts.

How did your plan your strategy? What did you do to set it out? What proven results did you obtain from all this work?

The categories for your nominations are:

Best Builders' Merchant Showroom

Best Builders' Merchant Hard Landscaping Display

Due to the highly visual nature of these categories, nominators are requested to submit quality jpegs, and/or CD Roms with their images. Filmed walk-throughs will also give the judges a more comprehensive picture of what has been achieved. This must be accompanied by a nomination that explains the why, how this was done and, of course, what this has meant for your business growth/sales.

Websites with commercial bite

A great website is easy to navigate, it has everything your audience wants and lets them into your world with the least fuss. Financial success on the internet depends upon several factors: quality content not only sells products but insures good placement on the search engines; search engine optimisation is crucial to your traffic flow; the message that you convey to your audience must be clear and as simple as possible; your visitors want to know who they're doing business with, and this is your chance to tell them and, your site should include as many different ways for customers to contact you as they possibly can.

The category for your nominations is:

Best Builders' Merchant Website

Giving it all in the marketing mix

The marketing mix – price, product, distribution, promotion – forms an entire promotional campaign. The marketing mix is not only an important concept, but a guideline to refer to when implementing the price, promotion, product, and distribution. Other components include planning, branding, packaging, display, distribution channels, personal selling, advertising, servicing, and physical handling.

Builders' merchants have been extremely imaginative with their marketing campaigns and customer service initiatives over the past nine years of the Awards. The judges will be looking for the campaigns that have been carefully crafted, skillfully implemented and intelligently monitored for real financial results.

The categories for your nominations are:

Best Customer Service by a Builders' Merchant

Best Builders' Merchant Marketing Initiative

Great people make great companies

It's all about collaboration and engagement. Share with the judges how your people have made a real difference to your business. Explain what they did, how they did it and what this has meant for your company, both locally and in the wider context of the business.

The categories for your nominations are:

Achiever of the Year

Builders' Merchant Manager of the Year

For the Lifetime Achievement Award, the judges will be looking for the individual who has dedicated their life to making their company outstanding and who has also made a contribution to the merchant market in terms of raising awareness in the industry or by implementing key changes from which the industry has benefited over the years.

Best companies in the business

Being the best goes beyond the bottom line. You excel in every area throughout the workplace and you show true commitment to your most important assets – your workforce.

Focusing on employees brings real benefits such as improved workplace engagement, better staff retention, reduced recruitment costs and greater financial performance. Why are you a success? How do you differ from other merchants and why? What have you achieved?

The categories for your nominations are:

Best Independent Builders' Merchant of the Year (1-5 branches)

Best Independent Builders' Merchant of the Year (6+ branches)

National Builders' Merchant of the Year

Best Heating and Plumbing Merchant (Environmental Focus)

Working for the environment

Is your company an environmental pioneer? Are you a hero in your sector? Is your initiative a top-down one? Is it a bottom-up, grass-roots model? How has your initiative driven change?  What was the 'internal' narrative that accompanied the return on investment? Who were your partners, supply chain or employees working through this initiative?

The category for your nominations is:

Best Builders' Merchant Environmental Initiative

How to be the best supplier

The best suppliers are those who understand what their customers are going through. They can offer solutions, not only for the general business but also more customised and personal ones. To be the best supplier in your customers' eyes is all about how you treat them and help them to achieve success. Merchants want to deal with suppliers who have taken the time to get to know their business and who understand what they are trying to achieve, the challenges they are facing, and what gets in the way.

The judges will be looking for proven strategies, details of how these were set out and followed up. Testimonials from key merchant customers are welcome, but they must substantiate the nomination with facts and where relevant, figures.

The category for your nominations is:

Supplier of the Year

Any queries?

  • For any further enquiries relating to the Builders' Merchant Awards for Excellence, contact Polly Sabin, Events Manager, The Hemming Group, Hemming Group Events, 32 Vauxhall Bridge Road,  London SW1V 2SS.
  • Email:
  • Telephone: 0207 973 6689.
  • To nominate online, visit