How to Write a Stand-out Awards Application

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As an IT pro, you know it pays (literally!) to add to your resumé, and that includes new skills, work accomplishments and professional accolades. Whether it’s for yourself or a colleague, speak up about the great things you see happening in your IT community by applying or nominating someone for a CompTIA AITP award!

Need more convincing? Check out these five reasons to apply for a professional award.

To make sure your application or nomination is a strong contender, here are four tips to remember when writing a stand-out awards application.

  1. Follow the instructions.

    Before getting started, read the application instructions carefully so you fully understand what is being asked. You don’t want to hurt your or the nominee’s chance of being selected because you overlooked a minor requirement in the application. For example, if the application asks for a headshot, provides a word count for essay answers, or is required to be submitted in a certain format (Word document vs. PDF), pay close attention to those details.

  2. Structure your application strategically.

    An awards application is like a persuasive essay—you are trying to convince an audience to see your point of view. And like an essay, your application should be structured with an opening statement describing why you or the nominee deserves the award. Back up the opening statement with evidence of how you or the nominee fulfills the award criteria. Finally, include a closing statement that reinforces the facts of the application. An organized and structured application that is easy to follow will leave a lasting impression on the awards committee.

  3. Talk the talk and walk the walk.

    Whether you are nominating yourself or someone else, it’s important to use specific examples. Let’s say are nominating a colleague for the CompTIA AITP Rising Star Award. You don’t just want to write, “John would be a great recipient of the Rising Star Award,” you need to tell the committee why. Provide examples of what John has done that shows he is worthy of the award. For instance, you could say, “John would be a great recipient of the Rising Star Award because during his three years in IT, he has received two promotions, has implemented a new troubleshooting ticket system at his company, and is an active member and volunteer for his local CompTIA AITP chapter.”

  4. Detailed info is key.
    Your awards application should tell a story, and when telling a story, details help create the narrative. Let’s use John as an example again: The committee most likely doesn’t know John personally; therefore, it’s important to describe his experiences. “John is an IT pro,” versus “John is an IT pro who works at his town’s library as a cybersecurity analyst. Previously, he was a cybersecurity specialist and network engineer. John also serves as the local CompTIA AITP chapter’s vice president.” The second version paints a clearer picture of who John is while the other is lacking details. 

Now that you’re prepared to write a successful awards application, check out CompTIA AITP’s Awards and nominate yourself or a deserving IT pro! The application deadline is Friday, September 7, 2018.