Annual Awards For Excellence in HR 2023 Winners

What an amazing awards 2023 has been turned out to be! We are now in our 27th Year of recognising Excellence in HR across our industry and it so amazing to see the number of nominations we receive grow each year. There have been some amazing stories of your successes and it was great to hear what you have been working on and the impact you have had. This years awards were held at the Nobu London Portman Square and was attended by over 300 guests, the feedback we have had from the night has been exceptional. This year is going to be a tough act to follow!
Well done to all of you that made it to the final shortlist stage this is a great achievement in itself. Ultimately we celebrated the achievements of the winners of our 10 award categories, as well as 4 highly commended organisations and individuals. The winners of the 2023 Annual Awards for Excellence in HR are pictured below, along with judges comments on their entries. We have some fabulous photos from the night so please do check out our event gallery.
We are looking forward to seeing you all at our upcoming events and look forward to hosting you all again in 2024.
See you next year...
Esther & the HR in Hospitality Committee.

2023 Winners

Excellence in Employee Engagement 

Sponsored by Dorchester Collection




The judges felt...

This team have mastered engagement from the moment they first opened and haven’t lost this as they’ve grown.

They keep up with advances in technology and have created an almost ‘cult like’ approach to their culture and values.

They invest both financially and emotionally with their people, backed up with some impressive stats and stories around ensuring their people are happy and fully engaged.


Excellence in Learning & Development

Sponsored by Otolo



The Belfry Hotel & Resort

Judges said …

We liked that the People Team was established to strive to create an inclusive & supportive work environment, fostering the success & engagement of everyone. As with many of our entries, this worthy winner necessitated learning measures & reviewing the career pathways in challenging times. They looked at structured pathways for growth & a journey to grow their own talent.

We liked that everyone played a pivotal role in fostering a culture of continuous self-improvement & that the programme was championed by leaders at all levels within the operation to tap into the collective wisdom & diverse perspectives.

They had a clear objective; aligned with their pillars, their results were tangible & very impressive.

Excellence in Talent Attraction

Sponsored by Peoplebank



Resorts World Birmingham

The judges thought...

This was a great example of taking a proactive and strategic approach to the challenges faced by the business and leveraging their employer brand to attract talent with significant impact on people and business metrics demonstrated.

They were really innovative. Thought about their target audience and used the right methods to attract and engage them.

They really had to use a wide spread approach. Working with Low budgets and really thought about their target audience to ensure they delivered the right talent.

Excellence in Promoting Careers

Sponsored by Placed-App




The Judges said...

This was a strong submission showing a clear vison, strategy and action plan to back it up resulting in outstanding attraction and engagement results for employees.

They have been very creative and demonstrated lots of initiatives, partnerships and collaborations to promote careers, with great results.

Really well thought out and clearly executed strategy which has created an engaging culture to attract and retain modern candidates.

Judges were very impressed with all of the initiatives that showed commitment to investing in their workforce .

Excellence in Diversity & Inclusion

Sponsored by DLA Piper



The Standard

The judges felt...

This was a worthy winner. They evidenced a more mature total approach and were more advanced in their outlook to include a wider EDI perspective.  As part of their recruitment strategy they proactively seek out employees from all walks of life as they believe this enhances the personality of their brand. This is embedded into the culture from day one ensuring they provide a diverse, safe and inclusive workplace for all employees with a zero tolerance policy not just with fellow staff but also guests and supplier partners.

They don't just talk the talk but genuinely walk the walk.


HR Team of The Year

Sponsored by Hartstone Rochette



Eden Hotel Collection

The judges felt...

This HR team is fully aligned to the business and their people.  Did excellent work to develop vision and values workshop, properly done and involved whole business. Courageous approach to truly involve staff in decision making like creating values or updating benefits. Well implemented simple yet effectives strategies to achieve goal of supporting business 'go back to normal'  Good supporting evidence to demonstrate the positive effect in people and business results. HR passionately came together to turn things around.

Excellence in Wellbeing

Sponsored by DAM



Eden Hotel Collection

The judges said they

Liked that they asked their people their views and involved them in developing wellbeing strategy, and acted upon the feedback.

This was a good warm hearted entry.

Good specific actions around cost of living crisis and how they supported their teams by creating wellbeing champions.

It was a real multi-facet approach to wellbeing with some fantastic results  and strong impact o people and the business

Overall a really good initiative.


Excellence in HR Technology

Sponsored by CODE Hospitality




The judges felt...

By placing user experience and UX at the core of their platform - able to drive engagement in a one stop shop that staff actually use. Staff really bought into it.  Good reflection of need to rapidly implement an LMS post covid to upskill at pace and digitalise HR and pivot on approach to changing their learning eco-system. Solutions were to create a digital learning library so access could be anywhere anytime. Took an innovative approach that was very aligned to their culture, tone of voice and language and involved the team in building the platform. Very cost-effective approach that works.

HR Rising Star

Sponsored by



Andreea Leonte, Maison Estelle

The judges were...

Impressed by the achievements that were evidenced and backed up by the senior team who wrote glowing testimonials. This person set up People and culture department in 6 months from scratch. Some of the most daunting people scenarios is starting with a blank sheet of paper, With no policy or process in place and a small team to support her. She has adopted a systemic approach From employment contracts to job descriptions to job adverts to integration.  It is great to read that she is also focused on mapping talent within the organisation and adopting A proactive approach to strategic workforce planning.

Outstanding Leader of the Year

Sponsored by Mapal One



Stephanie Freeman, Mollies

The judges saw...

Great examples of what this leader has done for the team to foster inclusivity and care, psychological safety and empowerment and encouraging personal growth.  Promotes recognition in the workplace and widely celebrates success in a number of ways being available for regular chats and catchups. They ae personally credible as a leader demonstrating the qualities needed to be a great leader from; empathy to EI and adaptability. Breaking glass ceilings and leads by example and the results are clear and strong.

Awards Sponsor + HRH White