Assessment Criteria

Assessment criteria

When assessing submissions the panel expect to see evidence of a rigorous and thorough evaluation process. It will consider the following themes at all levels of award.


Communication How well are the policies and plans communicated to staff?
Senior or high-level commitment Is there commitment from senior staff?

How is it communicated?

Effective analysis of the data What does the data show, and which actions are being taken to address the issues identified?
How will impact be measured?
Self-reflection and honesty The panel accepts that challenges may be faced and mistakes may be made, but these need to be recognised openly together with the steps taken to address them.
Engagement Are staff at every level involved in the development, implementation and evaluation of policies?

In reaching a decision on the appropriate level of award, panels will consider:

  • the clarity of the evidence provided of what has been done and what is planned
  • the rationale for what has been done and what is planned and how they link to the organisation’s strategic mission and goals
  • how successful the actions taken have been, how that success was measured and evaluated and how the organisation and the individuals who work in it have benefited
  • the link between the data and the action plans
  • the understanding of the institutional context/local circumstances and key issues demonstrated
  • the significance of any changes, programmes/initiatives in terms of their anticipated outcomes, their sustainability and the likely longer term impact on the organisation, its processes and its culture
  • the level of input, investment, involvement, commitment and support from senior management, heads of departments, senior academics and research team leaders (men and women)
  • consultation with input from all research academic staff (men and women), particularly encouraging women’s participation
  • the extent to which what was developed and introduced was different, innovative or particularly challenging
  • the suitability and sustainability of what has been developed and the ease with which changes have been or are likely to become embedded in the organisational/ departmental culture
  • the extent to which activities, programmes and changes have successfully addressed perceptions and expectations that shape or constrain career choices and outcomes
  • the extent to which the value of what has been done is recognised, welcomed and valued by staff generally