The GAPP Awards: What you are striving for

Competition is generally healthy, it creates the drive and desire to do better. Winners want to retain their top-notch position and those who fall short want to dethrone the winners. But titles come and go. It is the lasting mementoes and reminders of the competition and the achievements which carry the real value. Trophies and certificates can be displayed for customers, suppliers and the industry as a whole to see and admire.Until recently there was no competition for the local printing industry. At the beginning of this year, Sentient Publishing launched The GAPP Awards as the only and most representative printing competition for the local industry. For the purposes of the competition and in keeping with the coverage of The GAPP Magazine, printing refers to any process where an image is created on a substrate. The GAPP Awards are now open for entries and are progressing well. Sponsorships are gradually filling up and entries are being received. So, what is it that you will be competing for? These spectacular trophies (pictured below) have been designed and hand-crafted by Hypenotik Design based on a concept devised by the team at Sentient Publishing to capture the essence of The GAPP Brand. It is a strong, modern design emphasising the new and modern look and feel of The GAPP while at the same time reflecting the tradition and history of the printing industry and the various processes which make it up. The GAPP Awards is a broad-spectrum printing competition designed to give printers the opportunity to compete against other printers in similar sectors. A total of thirty categories have been determined to ensure that printers from all sectors of industry can enter and compete. The aim is to make the competition as representative as possible in order to ensure that printers from every sector have the ability to enter. A full list of the competition categories can be found on the new and dedicated website www.thegappawards.co.za which offers a single source for all the information on the competition. The category description will help you to determine the best category for you to enter. However, should you enter into the wrong category, the judges in the first round of judging will have the ability to move your entry if they feel that you have made a mistake. So, why should you enter? There is no question that quality is a must in the modern printing, signage and packaging industry. Customers will not accept anything less than the absolute best quality. But quality is a subjective thing and only by looking at print from a position of knowledge, expertise and understanding of the intricacies, can true quality be determined. This is where The GAPP Awards will allow printers to compete against each other because their work will be judged by an independent panel of judges who have experience in the various sectors involved. Who can enter? The competition is open to printers from all sectors of the industry irrespective of the type of substrate used, as each different type of substrate or printing technique will be addressed by a specific category. Each entry carries an entry fee – a portion of which will be retained for training purposes. Entries can be submitted by printers themselves, by their customers or by anyone associated with the job such as advertising or design agencies. It is important to note that entries can only be submitted with the approval of the specific printer as it is the printer who will win the award. Clients, agencies and other suppliers involved in the production of the job will be able to purchase additional certificates after the awards ceremony. How do I enter? All entries must be made via the website with a comprehensive section explaining the entry process. Once the entry form has been submitted and the payment for the entry made, a physical copy of the entry form plus two samples of the printed entry (or a portion in the case of larger works) must be sent to the address given on the website. The entry will only be considered complete once all these steps have been completed. How often can I enter? The aim should obviously be to enter as many times as possible across a number of different sectors. This increases your chances of winning an award. Awards will only be presented if the quality of entries in each of the categories meets a certain standard. The decision of what constitutes sufficient quality will rest with the judges and they will determine if awards are to be presented or not. How will judging work? There will be two rounds of judging. The first round will determine the quality of all the entries to be considered. Sub-standard entries will be removed from the judging process. The focus will be on print quality, not design and the onus will fall on the judges to determine the difference. Design for print is a separate category. It is also at this stage that the judges will check to see whether all entries are in the correct category. Once the preliminary judging has been concluded, the remaining entries will go through for final judging. Who will the judges be? Judges will be selected by an independent convenor of judges. Sentient Publishing, its staff and agents will not play any part in the process of selecting judges, other than putting names forward from the list it receives as recommendations. All that remains now is for you to start entering your jobs. One way of selecting the jobs to enter is to have an internal competition. This will allow you recognise individual operators or teams within your own organisation thereby encouraging them to improve their own quality, which benefits everyone. You can then enter the very best work which your company produces. Start compiling your work and get those entries in and one of these fantastic trophies could be taking pride of place in your company.