There are eight criteria you must meet in order to be eligible for the Awards component of the survey (to be identified as one of the 'Best Workplaces in New Zealand'):

1. All employees must be given the opportunity to complete the survey.

This includes full-time and part-time employees, and excludes contractors and casuals.

2. Only responses from New Zealand-based employees are considered when finalists are selected. Final selection excludes responses from overseas employees. If you have overseas staff you must include a demographic question to separate New Zealand based responses from overseas staff.

3. Response rate. You must achieve a response rate as follows

Number of employees Response rate required Other requirements
20-49 employees 80% Minimum 20 employee responses
50-399 employees 70%
400+ employees 65%

4. Your organisation must have been operating in New Zealand for at least 12 months at the commencement of their survey. This applies to startups but not mergers or acquisitions. If you would like to check if this eligibility requirement applies to you please contact IBM.

5. Your organisation must agree to participate in the IBM Best Workplaces Survey in good faith. Please view our policy on providing incentives to employees to complete the survey.

6. The survey must be completed during the qualifying period. For the 2017 awards, the survey must be completed by 31 October.

7. Participation in the Best Workplaces Awards is automatic if you participate in the Best Workplaces-branded survey and meet the eligibility requirements.

8. In some instances independent business units within a 'family' of organisations may undertake the survey. This would apply where that business unit operated as an autonomous unit, separately branded, and could reasonably be seen as a distinct entity from its parent organisation. Conversely, a department of an organisation cannot undertake the survey. If you are unsure of eligibility, please contact IBM on 0800 801 800 (within New Zealand) +64 9 359 8777 (international). If you can't meet this requirement but still wish to survey your staff, the New Zealand Workplace Survey offers an alternative option.

Categories for Finalists

Size Categories

All eligible organisations will be ranked using their survey scores. This ranking will be used to determine the following five category finalists and the winners in each category:

  • Best Small Workplaces (employing 20-49 employees)
  • Best Small-Medium Workplaces (employing 50-149 employees)
  • Best Medium-Large Workplaces (employing 150-399 employees)
  • Best Large Workplaces (employing 400-749 employees)
  • Best Enterprise Workplaces (employing 750 or more employees)

Finalists and winners earn the right to be identified as an 'IBM Best Workplaces Finalist' and can use this as part of their Employee Value Proposition.

Most Improved

There will be a group of awards presented to those that have shown the greatest improvement in survey results. These awards will be based on improvements seen in their overall score between the latest survey and a previous survey conducted between 6 and 18 months prior. Relevant eligibility requirements must be met for surveys in both years. An organisation does not need to be a category finalist to be eligible for this award.

  • Most Improved Small Workplace
  • Most Improved Small-Medium Workplace Most Improved Medium-Large Workplace Most Improved Large Workplace
  • Most Improved Enterprise Workplace

Overall Winner

  • Consistently high scores over time
  • Organisation size
  • Response rate
  • Consistency of results across demographic groups Other special circumstances

The winning organisation earns the right to be identified as the 'IBM Best Workplaces Overall Winner'. The selection of the Overall Winner will be made by IBM, and their decision will be final. No correspondence regarding the selection of the winners of these Awards will be entered into.

Five Year League

The Five-Year League Award was created in 2009 to recognise the significant achievement of organisations that have demonstrated consistently high performance over multiple years. To be eligible, an organisation must:

Have been a finalist in the IBM Best Workplaces Awards at least five times within the last six calendar years

Be a finalist the year the award is being presented

Ten-Year League

Like the Five-Year League Award, the Ten-Year League Award recognises those that have continued to demonstrate consistent high performance across at least ten years. To be eligible, an organisation must:

Have been a finalist in the IBM Best Workplaces Awards at least 10 times within the last twelve calendar years

Be a finalist the year the award is being presented

Each year that an organisation meets the eligibility requirements of either the Five, Ten or Fifteen-Year League they will remain in that League, and this achievement will be recognised during the IBM Best Workplaces Awards Evening. Note that organisations are not recognised in the Five, Ten or Fifteen-Year League at the same time, rather they graduate from the former to the latter.

How long are accolades valid for?

All finalists and winners (as listed above) receive an official logo of recognition for each accolade received in the current year. The official logo carries a date as accolades issued in any year are considered current for twelve months from the time they are issued or until finalists and winners are announced the following year.

Contact IBM

Contact IBM