There are just weeks to go for entries to be submitted for the Business in the Community's Awards for Excellence 2007.
The prestigious awards, recognising responsibility in the workplace, are rigorously assessed and independently assured they are powerful benchmarks of good corporate practice.
Now in their tenth year, the awards recognise companies for integrating responsible business practice into their mainstream operations resulting in a positive impact in the marketplace, environment, community and workplace.
David Darlaston, regional director, commented: "Ten years on, the need for businesses to operate responsibly in how they buy and sell, recruit and develop people, engage with their communities and manage their environmental impact is critical to their sustainability."
Companies that can demonstrate a high standard of impact in any one of 18 categories are encouraged to enter – the closing date is March 2.
New awards include the HBOS Responsible Marketing Award and Man Group Climate Change Award.
Winners are awarded the 'Big Tick' at a regional celebration event on June 20, at Himley Hall, in Dudley.
National finalists will then go on to a London gala dinner in July, following in the footsteps of last year's regional Big Tick winners: Jaguar Cars, RWE npower and Severn Trent Water.
Individual efforts are also recognised with the Marks & Spencer Sieff Award for bringing businesses and communities together to benefit society, and The Prince's Ambassador Award for people who have created a positive impact both in their company and on wider society, presented last year to David Waller, regional chairman of PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Full details of the categories and the application forms are available on the website www.bitc.org.uk/awards
A new regional category to highlight the work-life balance is being backed by PriceWaterhouseCoopers – a leading advocate on supporting ‘family friendly’ workplaces.
The award will recognise businesses that balance the needs of work against other demands on individuals.
PwC offers a range of options to employees including adoption leave, career breaks, time off for dependants, firm-supported charity work and flexibility to enable people, for example to observe specific religious festivals.
The spokesman said: "PwC sees diversity as a strength, helping to drive business performance and success through enhanced corporate innovation and creative competency.
"The impact has been measured and there is clear evidence it's working and paying dividends."