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Business Partner Network Award

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The HIA Business Partner award recognises the incredible work done ‘off-site’ in small to medium sized businesses in the housing industry. The award is open to employees and family members working part-time or full-time in the business.

Roles may range from bookkeeping and office administration through to client liaison and site supervision, interior design and implementing innovative change and new systems within the business.

Award entries for 2021 are now closed. To find out more, contact our events team on national_events@hia.com.au.


Business Partner Network Award



2021 HIA Australian Business Partner

Elizabeth Searle, Highwater Homes, NSW.

Elizabeth Searle of Highwater Homes in NSW was named the 2021 HIA Australian Business Partner during a virtual broadcast of the 2021 HIA–CSR Australian Housing Awards ceremony on 30 July. Tell me more

Essential information

Your submission
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Often Business Partners underestimate the importance of the work they do and undersell their contribution to the business. Take some time to think about your daily business activities as well as how you are contributing to areas of the business such as marketing, sales, operations and finances.

When uploading your submission, you will be asked to answer these questions:

  1. How many staff does the business employ?
  2. How many contractors does the business employ?
  3. How long has the business been in operation?
  4. Who does the business serve, who are your main customers?
  5. Are you a family member or an employee?
  6. How many hours do you work in the business per week?
  7. How long have you worked in the business?
  8. What is your position/title in the business?

Your submission must be uploaded as a word or pdf document addressing seven key criteria regarding your involvement and contribution to the business.

Business Partner Awards key criteria
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Strategy and development

  1. What are the goals of the business?
  2. What is the vision and mission of the business and how do you help achieve this?
  3. How does the business position itself, differentiate and develop its brand?
  4. How do you contribute to strategy and development of the business?



Please outline your involvement in the following operational areas of the business, giving examples where applicable.

  1. Back office management - for example every day accounts, managing cashflow
  2. Customer service
  3. Project management - for example ensuring the jobs run smoothly, on time and on budget
  4. WHS and safety administration - for example managing paperwork and systems
  5. Human Resource management - for example staffing issues, staff training and recruitment.


Sales and marketing

Outline how you have contributed to the following areas of business in the last 12 months.

  1. Sales and contract administration
  2. Marketing - for example advertising, website, social media, community involvement.



Please detail your involvement in managing the business' finances including:

  1. How do you monitor revenue and profit/loss?
  2. How do you control overheads and spending?


Business systems

Have you implemented any new systems or processes in the business in the last 12 months? Briefly outline why these were identified and how they were successfully integrated with business operations.


Upskilling/continuing professional development

Outline any training or upskilling you have done for your role within the last 12 months.

  1. How do you keep up-to-date with industry changes?


Work/life balance and additional comments

  1. How do you maintain a good work/life balance?
  2. Is there anything else you would like to tell the judges that hasn't been covered in the previous questions?
Conditions of entry
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The first three conditions must all be met to be eligible to enter:

  1. The entrant is a member of HIA’s Business Partner Network (BPN).
  2. The entrant is either a family member or staff member who is working in a small to medium-sized family business.
  3. The business is a current financial member of the Housing Industry Association Ltd (HIA).


Submission of online entry

  1. All sections of the online form must be completed and submitted together with a high resolution digital photograph of the entrant, by the closing date.
  2. Late entries will not be accepted.
  3. Entrants may be contacted by HIA and asked to provide additional documentation in support of their entry. Such documentation may include company references and/or testimonials.
  4. The person nominating or entering into this award agrees to HIA reproducing any images and/or details provided in or with the entry form for the purposes of promoting the Business Partner Award (and that the permission and approval of the guardian of any child in the images has been granted), such promotion being at the sole discretion of HIA and its associated media.
  5. HIA and its associated media accept no responsibility for any incorrect or misleading details or other information provided in the entry form.
  6. HIA accepts no responsibility for lost or late entries.


Judging of entries

  1. HIA will appoint a judging panel to assess the information provided in the entries for the Business Partner of the Year Awards
  2. Members of the judging panel include home building professionals and business partners.
  3. The judges are bound by strict judging criteria and are required to declare any interest in entries over which they deliberate and to stand aside from deliberations concerning those entries.
  4. The judge’s decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
  5. Judges reserve the right to decline to present an Award if a minimum standard of excellence has not been met.

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Conditions of entry

HIA-CSR Australian Housing Awards

Celebrate the highest level of achievement for the "best of the best" in the residential building industry for award winning designs and builds from across Australia.

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Professional Builder/Renovator Awards

Highly-prized recognition within the industry for extensive business and financial management practices.

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Greensmart Awards

Celebrating sustainably-built homes, new products and GreenSmart Professionals. Gain recognition for your sustainability building practices.

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Business Partner Awards

Recognising the vital work done by those behind-the-scenes in small to medium-sized businesses in the building industry.

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Apprentice Awards

HIA host the Annual Apprentice Awards to recognise and inspire the next generation of apprentices for the construction industry.

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HIA Apprentice Host Trainer Award

Putting the spotlight on apprentice hosts and the important contribution they make for Australian apprentices.

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