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Nine Finalists for 2024 Baldrige Award to Get Site Visits

Nine U.S. organizations have been selected to receive site visits this summer, proceeding to the final phase of a significantly revised process for applicant assessments for the annual Baldrige Award. The award identifies national role models of excellence among U.S. businesses and other organizations that apply and receive rigorous evaluations of their performance against criteria that focus on resilience and long-term success.

Selection Process

During a virtual meeting last week, the 2024 Judges’ Panel  reviewed ratings from the first phase of the award evaluation process, which extended from May to early June this year. To determine which organizations would receive site visits, the judges looked only at blinded data, thus avoiding any conflicts of interest and ensuring the integrity of the award process. The ratings were determined by evaluation teams composed of trained volunteers—members of the independent, all-volunteer Board of Examiners, who are competitively selected each year based on experience and expertise across various sectors of the U.S. economy.

Sixteen applicants were evaluated during the first phase of the 2024 Baldrige Award process. The nine organizations moving forward in the process will receive hybrid site visits this summer that will include virtual interviews of applicants, as well as two days of on-site examination by selected members of each evaluation team in late July.

The nine organizations that will receive site visits, of varying workforce sizes and sectors, include four health care organizations, three nonprofits (a category that includes government), one service business, and one education organization. These organizations may opt to receive public recognition as finalists for the 2024 Baldrige Award even if they are not selected as Baldrige Award recipients after the site visits.

Best Practice Spotlight

In addition, for the first time in 2024, some site-visited organizations not selected as Baldrige Award recipients may receive special recognition—a Best Practice Spotlight—for a process, activity, or initiative in an area of importance to the organization and/or the nation. The process, activity, or initiative would have a positive impact and strong results and be aligned with the 2024 Baldrige Award Criteria or the full 2023-2024 Baldrige Excellence Framework, including its 11 core values and concepts.

Streamlined Site Visit Process

During the upcoming site visits, examiner teams will verify organizational performance results in key areas, evaluate key processes that drove those results, and explore role-model characteristics. The approach has been streamlined to lower the burden on applicants and examiners. It begins with the applicant providing updated results and process information in advance of the site visit. The information provided will be analyzed by the examiner teams to determine what additional information is needed to complete their evaluations of the organizations. Engagement with the applicants will include virtual interviews as well as an in-person visit from two members of the examiner team. 

Baldrige Judges' Panel

The Baldrige Award’s Judges’ Panel will reconvene in September to review findings about the site-visited organizations’ performance and determine which to recommend to the secretary of commerce to be named 2024 Baldrige Award recipients.

The Baldrige Performance Excellence Program (BPEP) is managed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in cooperation with the private sector and with support from the Foundation for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. BPEP raises awareness about the importance of performance excellence in driving the U.S. and global economies; provides organizational assessment tools and criteria; and educates leaders in all types of organizations. The Baldrige Award recognizes the nation’s top-level performers in six categories: manufacturing, service, small business, health care, education, and nonprofit. The Baldrige Award is not given for specific products or services. Since the first Baldrige Award recipients were recognized in 1988, 134 awards have been presented to 124 organizations (including nine two-time award recipients and one three-time award recipient).

Released June 24, 2024