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Ireland’s Best Managed Companies

Applications for the Ireland’s Best Managed Companies awards are now closed. Now in its 16th year, the programme shines a spotlight on private businesses from across the island of Ireland and the exceptional performance that drives them.

About the Programme

The Ireland’s Best Managed Companies awards programme is led by Deloitte Ireland. The network comprises 130 companies, with a combined turnover of €17 billion and employs a total of 53,000 people. The programme represents 26 counties across the island of Ireland, ranging in sectors from retail and hospitality to manufacturing and construction. 

Ireland’s Best Managed Companies Awards programme promotes and recognises excellence in Irish/Northern Irish-owned and managed companies and is the only awards scheme on the island of Ireland that considers business performance from every perspective. Entrants to the programme compete for the designation in a rigorous process that evaluates the calibre of their management abilities and practices in addition to the strategy, capability, innovation, culture and financial performance of their companies.

For more information about the programme, please contact a member of the team at iebmc@deloitte.ie.

The Four Pillars

These four categories have been identified as the global common practices of successful business leadership.

Winners become part of Ireland’s Best Managed Companies network, a local and global community of companies who have achieved this mark of business excellence. Ireland’s network consists of 130 award winning companies.

Globally, there are over 1300 Best Managed Companies. The awards programme is active in 44 countries and counting. Ireland’s programme launched in 2008 and is the second longest running programme after Canada where the programme has been running for the past 30 years.

Successful new entrants to the programme are awarded as New Winners and join the elite Best Managed Companies Network. The network is made up of requalifying winners including those who have been awarded as Gold Standard (maintained their Best Managed Company status for four consecutive years) and Platinum Club (companies who have been awarded seven years in a row as a Best Managed Company).

Members have access to attend the programme’s year-round events, which include CEO roundtables, webinars, networking events and the exclusive awards ceremony. Events are supported by our programme partners throughout the year.

Eligibility criteria for entering the programme are as follows:

  • Companies must be Irish or Northern Irish, substantially privately owned, managed, and controlled (incorporated in either the Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland)
  • Have a turnover over €25million/£21million
  • Be established for at least five years
  • Demonstrate superior performance over the past three years (in relation to their peers)

The following companies are ineligible;

  • Public companies
  • Foreign multinationals and their subsidiaries
  • Credit unions/insurance companies/ banks
  • Charities, not-for-profit organisations, and their subsidiaries
  • Government-owned/public sector agencies/partnerships

What is the application process?

  • To be considered for Best Managed Companies, new applicants must go through a two-phase application process.

Phase I

  • Companies are required to complete a Phase I application to determine eligibility. Companies will be notified shortly thereafter if they have been shortlisted for Phase II.

Phase II 

  • Companies shortlisted for Phase II of the application process are asked to complete a second more detailed submission. Companies must demonstrate how the organisation is meeting and mastering its growth strategy and will be evaluated under a proven framework. Companies will be assigned coaches from Deloitte who will help them formulate their approach to completing the submission. The coaching offers an independent view of the business and allows companies to benchmark their performance.

The benefits of applying - that’s right, you benefit even if you don’t win! 

  • Coaching your way to success: One to one coaching from expert Deloitte advisors to fine tune your application before it goes to the judging panel. 
  • Excellent opportunity to take time out of the business to review your organisation, and your business plan and bring the management team together for some business planning sessions; supported by experienced business consultants. 
  • Shine a light on current best practices and areas for improvement,

The benefits of winning

  • A global mark of excellence: Winners increase their market visibility and credibility through the exclusive use of the Best Managed Companies designation. This is an important marketing tool for your business, both nationally and internationally. Also, as the award recognises the entire company - not just one individual – internal stakeholders and staff will share in the succes.
  • Coaching your way to success: If your initial application for the programme is successful, your company will receive exclusive and personalised coaching sessions from Deloitte. Not only is this a chance to fine tune your application before it goes to the judging panel, but it is also an excellent opportunity to review and revaluate your business strategy and help with a future development path for your organisation. Even if you company is not among the final winners, you are guaranteed to benefit from the business expertise and benchmarking gained during the coaching process.
  • A network like no other: Winning companies become part of the network of Best Managed Companies with access to exclusive year-round events and networking. Moreover should you be a successful finalist, you will have the opportunity to attend the Gala Awards Ceremony, recognised as one of the most important events in the Irish business calendar.
  • Publicity you can't buy: You will also enjoy excellent public recognition and profile through our media partner, The Business Post, including a special Best Managed Companies supplement. Winners also receive extensive coverage in national and local media, giving them an enhanced ability to attract and retain top talent.

Who sits on the Judging Panel?

The multi-disciplinary judging panel conduct the application review and winners selection. The judging panel will chaired by Frank Ryan (IDA) with other judging panel members to be announced shortly.

What is the Family Business Award?

The Family Business Award is presented in partnership with the Family Business Network Ireland recognising a standout family business who has qualified as a Best Managed Company. Entrants must complete specific section of the application form to be considered for this Award.

Is this awards programme new in Ireland?

The programme is active in 46 countries with more launches planned. Ireland’s programme launched in 2008 and is the second longest running programme after Canada where the programme has been running since 1993. 

What makes this programme unique?

It recognises the achievements of management teams, not just individuals and is the only awards programme in Ireland that recognises overall business performance.

What decision criteria are used to determine a Best
Managed company?

The judging panel will examine companies under the four equally weighted pillars of

1) Strategy

2) Capability and Innovation

3) Culture & Commitment and

4) Governance and Financial performance.

Is my revenue growth sufficient for qualification? 

Financial growth is a key attribute, but it is not the sole criteria under which you are judged. We also include measures for strategy, culture and commitment and capability and innovation in awarding successful applicants.

Is there a programme application fee?

There is no cost to participate in the program.

Will this take up a lot of my time?

We have taken care to streamline the application process. If you progress to Phase II, specified information is required for evaluation purposes. However your team will be guided through this by experienced coaches and the return on investment is evident.  

Will my company's financial information become
public?

No. The confidentiality of your financial information is vital to the integrity and continued success of the programme. Only your coaches who work directly with you and the judging panel will review sensitive information.

Can a company win a Best Managed Companies award more
than once?

Yes. Winners have the opportunity to requalify as a Best Managed Company after their initial win, subject to an annual and operational and financial review. Requalifying companies retain all of the benefits of being an award winner and have the opportunity to work towards the prestigious Gold Award (4 consecutive years as a Best Managed) & Platinum Award (7  consecutive years as a Best Managed) Awards, leading to more media coverage and encouraging continued commitment from staff and
stakeholders.

What are the different Award Levels?

Companies are awarded based on the number of years that they have successfully qualified for the programme.

  • Year 1 - Best Managed new winner
  • Year 2 & 3 - Best Managed requalifying winner
  • Year 4 - Gold Standard winner
  • Year 5 & 6 - Gold Standard requalifying winner
  • Year 7 - Platinum Standard winner
  • Year 8 and beyond Platinum Standard Requalifying winner   

What is the privacy policy regarding handling of my information?

More information about how Deloitte will handle your information is set out in our Privacy Policy, viewable on Deloitte Ireland LLP Privacy Notice

When are the 2024 winners announced?

Winning companies will be invited to celebrate their success at the annual Gala Awards Ceremony to be hosted in Dublin on 19 September 2024.

Who attends the Awards Ceremony?

The Gala honours all winning companies from across the country and is attended by new, requalifying, Gold Standard and Platinum Club companies and the programme sponsors. Best Managed Companies honours and celebrates the achievements of the entire organisation. Invitees are also welcome to bring along their management teams and other guests including clients, suppliers, vendors and any other business associates to join them in celebrating their company’s achievements.

Meet the Judges

Ireland’s Best Managed Companies

Do you have what it takes?

Discover which companies we previously recognized as Ireland's Best Managed Companies, along with the trends that led to their success.