How best to encourage and reward high achievement in rental? One answer is an annual awards ceremony highlighting and promoting the best performing companies and individuals. That is what International Rental News (IRN), with the support of the European Rental Association (ERA), will do next June by organising the first-ever IRE Rental Awards.

The ceremony is scheduled to take place on the evening of 4 June coinciding with the International Rental Exhibition (IRE) in Amsterdam. The event will take place during the European Rental Association's dinner as part of its annual convention, but will be open to all in the industry, not just ERA members.

The awards - the first for Europe's rental sector-will have several aims. Among them:

• To recognize and promote excellence in the rental industry among rental companies and their suppliers.

• To acknowledge individual achievement.

• To raise the profile of the rental industry in Europe.

“We think the IRE Rental Awards will provide a great showcase for our industry”, said Michel Petitjean, ERA's secretary general, “People and organisations learn from the successes of others. There is no better way to promote excellence in our industry than by giving credit to those companies and individuals who are leading the way.”

How it will work

Companies, industry associations and individuals will be able to submit entries for the awards - see catagories, right. In the case of awards for individuals, these shall be made in the form of nominations. Companies can submit entries for more than one award.

Entry forms will ask entrants to demonstrate, with supporting documents, that they have met the criteria to be used by the judging panel. These criteria will be made clear on the entry forms. The forms will be available for download from KHL Group's website by the end of October. A judging committee, comprising experienced individuals from Europe's rental business, will assess the entries and decide on the winners.

The awards will be open to any rental company operating in Europe - not just ERA members-and to suppliers anywhere in the world as long as they have a presence in Europe.

The deadline for award entries is FRIDAY 28 MARCH, 2008.

Entries will be judged on the basis of what companies have achieved or undertaken during 2007, although the IRN/ERA Rental Person of the Year Award will have a longer timescale, able to reflect a career-long dedication to rental, or, for example, a single, audacious act that has had a major impact on the industry.

We encourage as many entries as possible. If your company has had a fantastically successful 2007, or made special efforts in promoting safety in construction, or sustainability, then why not submit an entry?

Similarly, if you know an individual who has contributed to the industry in a significant way and deserves recognition - perhaps an unsung hero in your own company, or even a competitor that you admire - then make a nomination.

Recognising and rewarding success and excellence is a sure way to raise standards. We hope that the entire industry participates in the first IRE Rental Awards.

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