The SPARKies Judging Process & Nominations FAQs

Everything you need to know about making a nomination and how the SPARKies judging process works!

Can I nominate myself or my company?

Yes! You can nominate yourself or your company/organisation for all categories except the People’s Choice and Best Mentor.

How do I make my nomination stand-out from the crowd?

We’re all about quality over quantity. A well-written, carefully thought out written response is much more likely to catch the eye of a judge than simply copying and pasting in your Linkedin profile or company description.

Of course, if you do have websites, videos etc that back-up your written nominations – these will always help – but do remember it’s not the only thing judges look for when casting their votes!

Remember the judges will only be seeing your nomination details – so make sure you explain fully on the nomination form why the company/organisation/person deserves this award, as this information is what the judges will be basing their decisions on.

What’s the SPARKies qualifying region?

All entrants to The SPARKies 2018 must be based within Somerset, Wiltshire, Devon or South Gloucester, including Bristol, Bath and Swindon. This is the region detailed on the SPARKies qualifying region map.

If the organisation is headquartered elsewhere, but has a regional office which qualifies, it may still enter the awards. However, the activities detailed in the entry must have been led from the qualifying office.

How can I find out who’s judging which category?

We haven’t announced the judges yet, but once we do, if you want to find out who all the judges are, you can find them on the SPARKies Judges page. If you want to know who’s judging a particular category, you will find them at the bottom of each individual category page/ nomination form.

How are the nominations judged?

Each judge will only vote on between 1 and 4 categories. This is so they are able to read and consider all nominations in their assigned categories.

All the judges carry out their voting separately online and they are not able to see who other judges have voted for.

The judges are all asked to rank their top 5 nominations with their first choice being given 5 points and their fifth choice given 1 point.

If a judge has a conflict of interest with a nominee (see below) they will not be allowed to mark that nominee – but will mark ‘conflict’ so that we know, and use their points elsewhere.

The scores for each nominee are then added together and divided by the number of judges that actually marked that nominee.

The shortlist will be the 3-4 highest scoring companies/ individuals, with the winner being the one with the most points.

What constitutes a conflict of interest?

To ensure the awards are as fair as possible, we have asked all judges to abstain from voting for any nominee where there is any of the following conflict of interest:

– the nominee is a company a judge owns/founded/runs/works at is nominated

– the judge is on the advisory/ board of directors for a nominated company

– the judge has formally mentored (or been mentored by)/is monitoring a nominated company/individual

– the judge has invested financially into a nominated company.

What about the People’s Choice?

The People’s Choice nominations will be shortlisted by public vote so keep an eye out for that on and!

The top 4 favourites from the public vote will then be selected by the SPARKies audience on the awards night itself.

Have any other questions? Drop us an email at