Ireland’s Forecourt and Convenience Retailer Awards sponsors and categories
2020 ENTRIES NOW OPEN
We’ve listed each category and criteria below to give you the best chance of success in the biggest industry awards of the year!
Each forecourt with adjoining convenience store entered will be required to identify clearly the size category into which it fits. The size limits stated for each category includes the entire floor space of the convenience store and food-to-go areas including any franchises. Judges of this category will assess the levels of forecourt standards as appropriate to the size of the site and store.
This will include:
- A clean and attractive forecourt area with convenient and well maintained services.
- An inviting and well stocked convenience store which provides an exceptional shopping experience in terms of quality, choice and value.
The process will judge how well the product range and services reflect the size of the store and forecourt and entrants will gain higher scores by providing value added services which enhance the customer experience on the forecourt and in the store.
Forecourt Retailer of the Year
All entrants are entered into this category. A shortlist of finalists drawn from the best performers in all other categories will be asked to submit additional information that will be judged by a panel of experts. The panel of judges will decide upon a shortlist of businesses who will be invited to an in depth interview with the panel to decide the overall winner. The interview will look at all aspects of the business including staff development, marketing and promotion, customer care and business improvement.
Category 1 – Forecourt with C Store selling area up to 1750sq ft.
This category is open to any forecourt with a convenience store and food to go area (including franchises) with a combined floor space of less than 1500sq ft.
Category 2 – Forecourt with C Store from 1751 sq ft to 2750sq ft.
This category is open to any forecourt with a convenience store and food to go area (including franchises) with a combined floor space between 1501sq ft. and 2500sq ft.
Category 3 – Forecourt with C Store 2751sq ft plus
This category is open to any forecourt with a convenience store and food to go area (including franchises) with a combined floor space between 2501 sq. ft. in selling floor area
Fresh Food Store of the Year
This award is designed to recognise the best in fresh food retailing. The winner of this award will be thriving fresh food store offering some or all of the following – fruit and veg, meat, fish and poultry, dairy, and baked goods. Judges will be looking for quality, seasonality, use of local produce and outstanding retail display. Entrants must be able to show a clear commitment to excellence in fresh food provision across all areas of the store. This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.
Motorway Service Station of the Year
This award is designed to celebrate the best service, and services provided by forecourts situated on or near major road or motorways. Judges will be looking for excellent signage, parking and forecourt facilities for all users. Particular emphasis will be placed on the food to go facilities in terms of choice, quality and value for money to suit customers at all times of the day. Cleanliness and hygiene in rest and toilet areas will be assessed as will the extent of the services offered for all users including any family friendly initiatives. This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.
Best Category Management
Judges of this category will assess the category management throughout the store. They will consider all aspects of the location, display, volume, grouping and merchandising of products in addition to signage and effective use of POS. This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.
Store Manager of the Year
This award is open to all owners or managers of forecourt and convenience store sites who have a minimum of two years’ experience at 1st June 2017. Candidates for this award can be nominated or self-nominate. Candidates will be asked to give evidence of measurable business success, their ability to manage and develop staff, their focus on customer service and their innovative and successful approach to improving business performance in all areas. All entrants will be asked to complete a written submission which will be judged by a panel of industry experts. Short listed candidates will be invited to interview.
Best Customer Service of the Year
The judges will be looking for a forecourt and convenience store which provides excellent service to customers through their commitment to customer care and the provision of an appropriate range of services and facilities. Specific criteria will include a clean and well maintained forecourt and store area, welcoming and well presented staff providing efficient service, and clean and tidy washrooms. This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.
Lifetime Achievement Award
The Lifetime Achievement Award is decided by the Neighbourhood Retailer editorial board. While the board may nominate an individual based on their perceived contribution to the industry, nominations and self-nominations are welcome.
You must provide photographs to support your entry. You can submit up to 5 photographs of the forecourt and store as below:
- External photo of forecourt
- Fuel pumps
- External photo of shop front
- Till point
- General shots of inside the store
Community Store of the Year
This award is open to a forecourt with a store of any size that can show how
they have a direct impact on improving the local area through employment, environment or charity projects. Judges will be looking for evidence of initiatives such as charity events or support of local groups which show a long term commitment to the community they serve. Social media campaigns to engage with the local community and a partnership approach with local groups to enhance the area surrounding the store combined with excellent retail standards will be assessed. This category will be judged by professionals in this field based on written information and mystery shopping visits.
Best Forecourt Facilities
The judges for this category will be looking for a well maintained forecourt including the forecourt surface, canopy and signage. The services offered should be convenient, in full working order and easy to operate. The process will judge how well the services reflect the size of the forecourt and entrants will gain higher scores by providing value added services which enhance the customer experience on the forecourt. . This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.
Newcomer of the Year
This category is open to all forecourt sites with a convenience store that has been open for business for two years or less at 1st June 2017. In addition to high retail and forecourt standards, a broad range of products and services and excellent customer service, judges will be looking for a business that is well managed and had future sustainability. This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.
Best Food to Go
The judges will be looking for a forecourt with an in store hot and cold food facility that clearly meets and exceeds the requirements of its customers. Innovative choices and immediate visual impact in terms of the food offering as well as quality of the food and value for money will be of particular importance. Judges will also consider the breadth of the range and how this caters for customers at different times of the day and also hoe promotional initiatives help drive the food to go sales. Customer service, hygiene standards and specialist product knowledge will be taken into consideration when judging this award. This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.
Best Site with a Licence to Sell Alcohol
The entrants to this award will be judged on their ability to meet the needs of customers, to adhere to the requirements of responsible alcohol retailing, and to provide a broad range of wines, beers and spirits. Specific criteria will include merchandising and display, store layout, customer service and specialist product knowledge. This category will be judged initially by mystery visit.
Best Oil Company Initiative
This category is open to all oil companies that have successfully implemented an initiative which has supported and the improved the business. This initiative could be from any aspect of the business including products, services, policies and procedures, promotions and marketing. The winner of this award will be able to demonstrate a thorough, strategic and substantiated approach to business improvement. This category will be judged by professionals in this field based on written information forwarded.
Training Initiative of the Year
This category is for retailers who have brought about a positive change in behaviour in their staff which has results in quantifiable benefit to the individuals, customers and the overall performance of the site by means of an innovative and effective training initiative. Each entrant will be asked to complete a written submission to give information about the training undertaken. This category will be judged by professionals in this field and based on written information and supplementary evidence forwarded by the entrant.
If you are entering into any of the following categories, please supply two extra photographs of the specific area of the forecourt or store.
- Forecourt Facilities
- Food to Go
- Licence to sell Alcohol
- Category Management
New Product Launch of the Year (NEW!!)
This award is open to any business that has introduced a new product to the forecourt, foodservice or grocery markets in an innovative way to reach their marketplace effectively and successfully. Entrants should give evidence of the content, the types of different media used, the results achieved and how these have increased awareness, attracted new customers and increased sales. This award will be judged by written submission.