Today Fast Company has begun accepting applications for our second annual Best Workplaces for Innovators awards. Once again, our goal is to identify and celebrate companies that empower employees at all levels to improve processes, create new products, or invent whole new ways of doing business.
This year, the program will also include a category honoring the Innovation Team of the Year, allowing companies to nominate specific groups within their organizations who have gone above and beyond to champion a more innovative culture.
To select winners, the editors of Fast Company are again collaborating with Accenture, a leading professional services firm that works with more than three-quarters of the Fortune Global 500 to deliver innovation and transformation for a digital world. Accenture serves as an objective third party, bringing decades of research and expertise on relevant topics, from corporate innovation to workplace inclusion. Together we have devised a series of questions and metrics and developed a rigorous, data-based methodology to evaluate the role innovation plays in a particular company’s operations.
“Companies recognize that they need to encourage innovation in order to attract and retain talent,” says Fast Company editor-in-chief Stephanie Mehta. “We’re looking to identify the companies that can demonstrate they have the infrastructure and culture needed to stoke innovation across all levels of their organization.”
Every company that applies will be evaluated by Fast Company’s editorial staff, and finalists will be presented to an elite panel of judges—leading entrepreneurs, executives, technologists, and academics. Companies selected as Best Workplaces for Innovators will appear in the September 2020 issue of Fast Company magazine and on fastcompany.com.
Last year’s inaugural Best Workplaces for Innovators issue honored 50 organizations from around the world, ranging from fledgling nonprofits (Myanmar-based Proximity Designs and Los Angeles-based Thorn) to corporate giants such as Amazon and Morgan Stanley.
“With Best Workplaces for Innovators, we will be recognizing companies that have established a proven track record as incubators of innovation, encouraging employees from top to bottom to discover, explore, and invent,” Mehta says. “We are open to companies of all sizes and across all industries from around the world.”
For more than a decade, Fast Company has been recognizing outstanding achievement with three different awards programs. Our Most Innovative Companies list celebrates organizations that are transforming industries and shaping society through paradigm-shifting products, insights, or services. Innovation by Design focuses on individuals and firms that are addressing some of the world’s most intractable challenges through design solutions. And World Changing Ideas highlights emerging initiatives that aim to enhance life for all of us.
Any organization that can demonstrate a serious and sustained commitment to building a culture of innovation that yields tangible results is eligible to apply—public, private, or nonprofit. For more information or to apply, visit fastcompany.com/apply/bwi.