The award process underwent a significant redesign for 2022. Why are reviews by both the overseers and a contracted external organization being done before waiting to see the results of the redesign?
The recent redesign focused on the examination process. The overseers’ review focuses on lowering barriers to participation in the award process from an applicant’s perspective. The external review will be broader considering the state of the program and its ability to help improve the competitive position of U.S. businesses and organizations. The external review will consider these factors and others, while bringing an external perspective to what potential improvements and changes may need to be made.
Why does the Baldrige Program plan to have the external review at the same time as the review requested by its Board of Overseers?
The external review will be performed by an independent organization. The external review will consider the review initiated by the overseers and will ensure that the Baldrige Program benefits from a genuinely outside perspective.
What type of review is being done by the Board of Overseers? Is this something different?
Yes. In 2021, the Board of Overseers tasked a group comprised of overseers, judges, examiners, and Baldrige community members, including recipient, applicant, and Alliance representatives, with exploring barriers to participation in the award process and recommendations for lowering or eliminating those barriers. The recommendations will be presented to the Overseers at the June 16th meeting.
Why not allow the 2022 award process to continue while the external review is in process?
NIST and the Department of Commerce want to ensure that the Baldrige Program is positioned to best advance U.S. competitiveness. With so many change initiatives under way, we believe it makes sense to take the time to do a thorough review and combine those efforts, rather than roll out incremental changes that may not be sufficient to ensure the program’s desired impact.
Will 2022 Baldrige Award applicants that already paid fees be refunded?
Baldrige will offer to evaluate their application for feedback purposes only (without any judging), should the applicant desire. In that event, application fees will be reduced, with each organization receiving a refund of approximately 15% of the application fee it paid. These organizations will receive a feedback report with examiner-identified strengths and opportunities for improvement. Applicants that do not wish to receive an evaluation, will be offered a full refund.
For inquiries regarding the award process, please email iday [at] nist.gov (iday[at]nist[dot]gov).