Birmingham's best companies have been challenged to throw their names into the hat as the city's premier business awards rolls round again.

The Birmingham Post Business Awards is back and bigger than ever, with the celebration of everything private sector in the region taking place on November 12 at ICC Birmingham.

Businesses of all sizes can nominate themselves for one of ten categories before the deadline of September 21 - click through to visit the dedicated awards website.

The 2015 award categories are:

- Business Start-Up and Entrepreneur

- Creative, Communications and Digital

- Export

- Finance

- Legal

- Manufacturing

- Outstanding Professional

- People Development

- Property and Regeneration

- Small and Medium-sized business

The awards returned to the ICC last year on the back of surging demand from businesses at the forefront of the city's private-sector rebound.

And that success has continued, as shown in last week's unemployment figures which revealed a rising tide of news jobs had meant the West Midlands has outperformed all UK regions in the past five years.

Birmingham Post editor-in-chief Marc Reeves has urged companies in the region to start nominating.

He said: "The economic resurgence in Birmingham is gaining pace and that is largely driven by the creativity and enterprise of the businesses in our region. That is something we should be proud of and celebrate.

"We want firms of all sizes to nominate themselves so we can shout about the success stories that make this a thriving region with lots of reasons to be optimistic about the future.

"This year's business awards will without question be the biggest ever. There are so many stories out there to be proud of, so share them with us."

Companies can nominate themselves and their stories will be celebrated across the Post's platforms and on social media.

While the Post awards rewarded success in adversity during the downturn, in recent years it has been a celebration of an economy on the rebound.

As well as rising employment, and falling unemployment, the region has enjoyed a rise in export sales, foreign investment and tourist spend.

The Post awards seeks to appropriate credit for those successes where it should go - with businesspeople.

Businesses are being urged to nominate themselves in the 11 categories.

Being shortlisted is a great way to raise your company's profile as its achievements will be highlighted in front of hundreds of the city's movers and shakers on the night of the awards.

Previous winners have said their business has enjoyed an upturn in morale, reputation and orders on the back of award victories.

Anthony McCourt, founder of Court Collaboration, which won in the property category last year, said it had a major impact on his business, particularly in promoting in China.

He said: "Winning the award really did make a tangible difference - far more than I would have thought. If you look at the suite of awards in Birmingham, the Post awards is the crème de la crème.

"There is no better award you can win that will resonate around the world, particularly in Asia for us. It really helped our Asian business strategy. In fact, it created it. I really don't say the lightly - that kind of thing is really important there."

Interior design firm Dapa was the big winner at the 2014 Birmingham Post Business Awards, after being crowned Company of the Year.

Click through to see the other category winners from 2014

Award winners, and those shortlisted, will also feature in a special post-awards supplement in the Birmingham Post.

And for those companies which would like to get involved in this year's awards through sponsorship, there are a wealth of opportunities.

By becoming a sponsor, you can expect to receive a full range of editorial and advertising benefits - in print, online and at the event.

To discuss sponsorship or for more information contact Craig Cooksley on 0121 234 5785 or email craig.cooksley@trinitymirror.com.

This year's judging panel is:

- Narinder Paul, partner at KPMG who leads its people services team in the Midlands

- Nicola Fleet-Milne, owner of property letting and sales agency FleetMilne Property

- David Bailey, Post columnist and professor of industry at Aston University

- Karen Woolley, development manager at the Federation of Small Businesses in Staffordshire and West Midlands

- Alan Edwards, senior purchasing manager with Jaguar Land Rover who has spent 25 years with the company