Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Local businesswoman in final line up for two national awards

A local businesswoman has reached the national finals of two prestigious awards schemes that recognise the positive impact that small businesses have on the nation’s economy.

Rachel Hayward is the founder of Ask the Chameleon and specialises in producing funding and commercial procurement applications and business award submissions for ambitious East Midlands micro, small businesses, and Third sector organisations.

Since the business launched in 2015, ATC has secured a total of £117m in contracts, with potentially a further £100 million contract values in the pipeline, as well as numerous high profile awards for clients.

She has been named the East Midlands self employed/freelancer of the year in the 2024 awards organised by the Federation of Small Business (FSB) which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year.

Rachel will now attend the national final in Blackpool’s Winter Gardens on May 9 alongside the other regional winners from across the UK.

Ask the Chameleon has also reached the national final of The Small Awards which are a nationwide search for the smallest and greatest firms in the UK, across all sectors.

The awards are organised annually by Small Business Britain, which champions, inspires and accelerates the nation’s 5.5 million small firms and the winners will be announced in London on May 16.

Rachel explained: “I am obviously delighted to have won the regional FSB award and being part of an impressive line up of business people for the national award is a huge honour.

“Having now been shortlisted for the supply chain champion category of the Small Awards, I hope that May will be a double celebration.

“I wanted to enter these awards to highlight the typical characteristics of the self-employed and freelancers who need to be motivated, flexible and resilient to achieve their goals and to showcase that this has been particularly important during and post pandemic when most of us were ineligible for support that other businesses relied on for survival.”

Rachel continued that her passion was to support SMEs in the region: “Although SMEs are the lifeblood of the economy, most do not have the capacity to bid for tenders to secure their own growth or do not feel they would be judged able to deliver public sector tenders.

“By working in collaboration with my SME clients and providing services such as a monthly tender alert, I am able to unlock opportunities and level the playing field for them so that they can successfully navigate the complex procurement landscape to grow their businesses.”

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