• The Responsible Business Awards in Northern Ireland are open for entries
  • Eleven categories available in 2021
  • The deadline for submissions is 5pm on Friday 11 June. The application process is online.

If your business goes above and beyond to make a difference to society or to the environment, it’s time to be rewarded and recognised for your responsible business commitments and actions. Enter the 2021 Responsible Business Awards in Northern Ireland before the submission deadline, 5pm on Friday 11 June.

In a year when every person and company has been impacted by the pandemic, the Awards, organised by responsible business network, Business in the Community, is keen to see entries from businesses large and small, and from every sector.

The Awards, taking place in partnership with JP Corry and SPAR, and in association with Ulster Business and U105, recognise and celebrate firms in Northern Ireland that are taking practical action to address pressing social and environmental issues.

The 11 Award categories range in theme, from diversity and wellbeing in the workplace, to recognising those who are working for the benefit of the community, through to companies who develop products that inspire sustainable lifestyles.

Heron Bros, the previous winner of Business in the Community’s Responsible Company of the Year, is the proud sponsor of the Environmental Leadership Award. Over the last 12 months Heron Bros has been recognised for their environmental leadership. Ahead of the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26), Heron Bros achieved Gold at the Northern Ireland Environmental Benchmarking Survey, re-accredited with CORE Gold and recognised for their passion and commitment to improving environmental performance with the George Dawson Award for Environmental Contribution.

Noel Mullan, Commercial Director, Heron Bros stated “Being a responsible business is now more important than ever. We have witnessed a seismic shift over the last 12 months which has turned the spotlight on just how closely our actions as individuals, businesses, and communities are linked to the overall health of the planet. We all face numerous challenges, but regardless of what else is happening in the world, the climate crisis is here, it is real, and there is a call for businesses to show environmental leadership. As we build back better, into the “new normal”, we must all use this opportunity to accelerate towards a more sustainable future.”

Calling for entries for Environmental Leadership at the Responsible Business Awards in Northern Ireland 2021 are: Noel Mullan, Heron Bros and Lisa McIlvenna, Business in the Community.

Kieran Harding, Managing Director, Business in the Community says: “This year has been challenging and we recognise how difficult it has been for everyone. In connecting with businesses across Northern Ireland over the past year, I am so impressed with their commitment to supporting their people, keeping the environment and sustainability at the top of their agenda and really deepening their engagement with communities who’ve needed business support more than ever.

“This year’s Awards will recognise that it has not been ‘business as usual’ and we’re keen to see entries from the spectrum of Northern Ireland businesses.

Entering the Awards is free, and they are even easier to enter this year as the application process has moved online. Enter now at www/bitcni.org.uk/awards.

Which of these categories will you go for this year?

  • NI Responsible Company of the Year, sponsored by Asda
  • Age-Friendly Business Award, sponsored by Age-Friendly Network
  • Diversity and Inclusion Award, sponsored by Belfast Harbour
  • Education Partnership Award, sponsored by Allen & Overy
  • Environmental Leadership Award, sponsored by Heron Bros 
  • Innovation in Employability Award, sponsored by George Best Belfast City Airport
  • Investing in Your Community Award, sponsored by Arthur Cox
  • Responsible Digital Innovation Award, sponsored by Allstate NI
  • One-to-Watch Award, sponsored by Ciena
  • Responsible Product / Service Award, sponsored by Translink
  • Wellbeing at Work Award, sponsored by Larne Port


Calling for entries for the Responsible Business Awards in Northern Ireland 2021 are: Ciaran McConnell, JP Corry, Noel Mullan, Heron Bros; Ciaran McCallion, Allen & Overy; Stephen Patton, George Best Belfast City Airport; Chris Conway, Translink; Bronagh Luke, SPAR; Peter McVerry, U105; Lisa McIlvenna, Business in the Community; Joe O’Neill, Belfast Harbour; John Mulgrew, Ulster Business; Colm McElroy, Arthur Cox; Joe McDonald, Asda; John Healy, Allstate and Elma Greer, Age Friendly Network