Process

The Sport Industry Awards Judging Process is one of the most transparent and stringent procedures of its kind. We have a 2-step judging process comprising Steering for shortlisting and thereafter Judging for final results adjudication. The Steering panel is made up of more than 50 key industry experts with over 60 hours of intensive steering. Conducted in two stages and all overseen by an independent adjudicator, the process will begin with the entries being reviewed and judged by the Awards Steering Committee, featuring figureheads and industry heavyweights, to produce the Official Shortlist. The Judging panel will then decide the final winner of each category announced at the Discovery Sport Industry Awards.

The  judging panellists can be found here.

Part A) The Steering Process:

  • We set aside 1 week for the steering period.
  • Steerers are considered experts in their respective fields and are specifically focussed on particular award categories.
  • Steerers are appointed through a variety of channels. All Steerers are required to accept the role of a Steerer, but they are not aware of which category this is for. Steerers can serve on more than 1 category.
  • Each category takes between 2 to 3 hours to shortlist.
  • A morning session takes place from 07h30-12h30 and an afternoon session takes place from 13h30-18h30 – with 4 categories being reviewed each day
  • Sitting in on each steering session are 4-6 External Steerers, an Independent Adjudicator, an Sport Industry Group Facilitator, Note Taker and Event Manager.
  • Before the steering session takes place, each steerer is asked to sign a Confidentiality Agreement Form.
  • The Event Manager collects these and files them immediately.
  • Steerers are thereafter notified of the category which will be steered and who the entrants are in order to assess any conflicts of interest (i.e they may have worked on that campaign in previous years therefore could potentially have a biased opinion) which are identified by the Steerers.
  • Any conflicts of interest must be noted clearly before the session commences. The Facilitator and the Independent Adjudicator will assess any conflicts of interest and decide on any appropriate action before commencing with the steering process.
  • Copies of the Entry Terms and Conditions are available for the steering committee to refer to if necessary.
  • Each Steerer will have a ‘Mark Sheet’ with A) the order in which the entries are going to be read through, B) multiple rows for each criteria and C) columns allocated to each entry where each Steerer can mark their score.
  • At the completion of the steering process, Steerers will have a row to put forward a shortlist in order of preference (top 6) and any applicable notes for each entry in short hand. An additional page is available and provided for additional notes to support the rankings.
  • Each Steerer is also given a tablet with the Entry Forms (in PDF format) for the category being judged, listed in the same order as on the mark sheet.
  • Notepads and pens will be available and Steerers are encouraged to take notes on each entry to refer to when deciding the Official Shortlist at the end.
  • The Independent Adjudicator is also required to takes notes for every single category and submit their notes to the organisers once the entire steering process has ended, so that they may refer to these notes at the Official Judging Day.
  • The Facilitator opens the session by talking about the structure of the session, introduces the category being judged and reads the criteria. The criteria is listed on the first page of each entry form but is also printed on A1 and stuck on the wall for everyone’s reference.
  • Once the session starts and all the entries have been reviewed, the Event Manager will showcase supporting material relating to each entry.

(The Event Manager’s role is to collate all the supporting material for each entry across all the categories in advance to present to the steering committee. Supporting information can be submitted in the form of images and videos, all supporting info to be submitted via USB drive.

  • At the end of the session, each Steerer will be asked to list their Top 6, in order of preference. The Adjudicator will tally all the votes and the panel will then mutually agree the Official Shortlist of 6 in an order of preference. The steering committee will need to advise the SIG Facilitator if they believe there are more or less candidates (than the prescribed 6) that need to be shortlisted and the reasons thereof. The SIG Facilitator will need to decide on the amendment to the prescribed 6 on the shortlist. 
  • Once the steering session is over, the Event Manager will then collect the Mark Sheet and additional notes for filing.
  • The Official Shortlist is then given to the final Judging Panel who will decide the winner of each category announced at the Sport Industry Awards.

Part B) i) Official Judging Day

  • The Official Judging Day is hosted after steering.
  • Judges are selected by the Sport Industry Group Awards Committee based on the above awards and key requirements for these awards. A Steerer can be a Judge. The chairperson of the judges is seen to be totally independent of any of the entries shortlisted. The chairperson will not serve as a Steerer.
  • Two weeks before judging day, all of our judges are emailed a WeTransfer link which contains the entry forms and supporting information which they must read and viewed in advance ahead of the judging day (The Shortlisted Entries).
  • In advance of Judging day, Agency Judging Day (as per the below) would have taken place and the results shall be presented at Official Judging day.
  • Each of the Judges are assigned to a group, whose focus will be on specific categories only.
  • In addition to the allocated categories, all judges will be asked to read over the entry forms for all Brand of the Year and Campaign of the Year shortlisted submissions.
  • In the morning session, all judges will view the live pitches for Brand of the Year and Campaign of the Year, where a maximum of 3 representatives from each Campaign and Brand entry will deliver a presentation.
  • Once these pitches have finished, judges will be divided into their specific groups for discussions on the awards. A facilitator will move between each group, who will be present to guide the group and to show all judges the supporting information that has been submitted with each entry.
  • During the afternoon session, we will ask a representative from each group to present their conclusions to the entire judging panel. This will be in the form of a brief breakdown of each category, noting the chosen top two, the recommended winner, with clear and definitive reasoning behind the decisions, ahead of a vote from the full panel. Post the vote, the results will be cross-checked against the rankings of the shortlisting and rubber stamped by the Independent Adjudicator. If a winner, is not in the top 3 as prescribed by the Steerers then discussion will be held with regards to the winner and the listed top 3. The facilitator might request a re-vote depending on the discussion. The Independent Adjudicator’s decision shall be final.
  • The Judges will have decided the winners for each category, in the case of a tie or where they cannot agree on the final winner, the Independent Adjudicator will defer to the Steering Committee rankings.

Part B) ii) Agency Judging Day

  • Before the Judging Day, a smaller group of judges will travel to each shortlisted agency to experience the vibrancy and atmosphere of each entrant. The group will be tasked with evaluating each entrant and discussing the larger group of Judges.
  • Attending these visits will be a minimum of 2 Official Judges, the Independent Adjudicator and up to 3 representatives from the organiser, including the event manager and a note-taker.
  • Each visit will last 30 minutes. This time will include an 8 minute presentation, a 7 minute Q&A and a 15 minute window to offer the Judging Sub-Committee a feel for the culture of their office, the people within it and what makes their agency different.
  • After the conclusion of these visits, the group will go through the normal judging process on Judging day and conclude on the winner.

Part B) iiii) Special awards

  • On Judging day, there are 4 awards, that have a unique entry process and thus are explained separately.
  • Leadership in Sport Business Award:
    • The shortlist is developed by The Sport Industry Group Awards committee after canvassing a variety of key industry stakeholders for input
    • The shortlist is developed using the same method that the steering committees utilise, except that no one has to enter themselves in the category, but the committee is open to suggestions
    • Each candidate is required to accept the nomination and shortlisting
    • Each candidate will provide a short response to pre-selected questions as part of their entry which are directly linked to the criteria of the award
    • There shall be reference checks done on submissions
    • The shortlist is announced at the same time as the other awards
    • Thereafter, the process of judging, by the committee, will be the same as all other entries which the response sheets being used as each candidates submission
  • Sport Industry Personality of the Year Award:
    • The shortlist is developed by The Sport Industry Group Awards committee after canvassing a variety of key industry stakeholders for input
    • The shortlist is developed using the same method that the steering committees utilise, except that no one has to enter themselves in the category, but the committee is open to suggestions
    • Each candidate is required to accept the nomination and shortlisting
    • Each candidate will provide a short blurb on themselves (as prepared by the Sport Industry Group Awards Committee and approved by the candidate)
    • The shortlist is announced at the same time as the other awards
    • Thereafter, the process of judging will be done digitally by the industry
    • Each vote needs to be linked to an email address per the Sport Industry Group database
  • Sport Lifetime Achievement Award:
    • The Sport Industry Group Awards committee award the award to the winner based on the agreed criteria
    • The announcement is made at the awards
    • Judges have no role in the adjudication
  • Sportperson’s Lifetime Community Award:
    • The Sport Industry Group Awards committee award the award to the winner based on the agreed criteria
    • The announcement is made at the awards
    • Judges have no role in the adjudication