2018 Instructions


On this page, you’ll find some helpful tips you’ll want to heed when filling out nominations, and general guidelines as to those eligible to receive an award.


There will be several steps in the nomination process:


Nominators submit the online form on the Nominate page. 

These suggestions might help you write your nominations.

Please use this offline form to prepare your answers.

Independent Review

A review panel will evaluate each nomination. Reviewers may reach out to nominators or those involved in the achievement for more information.

Final Judges Review

The Judges’ Panel will review all nominations and make final award decisions in Spring 2018.

Deadlines and Important Dates

September 4, 2017 - Nominations system opens

December 31, 2017 - Nominations system closes

Spring 2018 - Winners are announced

Mid-June 2018 - Tallahassee Awards Ceremony

Late-June 2018 - Regional Awards Ceremonies

The Nominations

Who should be nominated?

Any employee of the state of Florida can be nominated. Nominations should reflect an innovative or outstanding idea or practice that has led or will lead to taxpayer savings, improved service delivery, or overall taxpayer value.

Who Is Eligible to be Nominated?

ONLY full-time or OPS state employees are eligible. Private contractors, consultants, and other outside entities are NOT eligible. Awards are limited to one (1) individual award and/or one (1) award as a member of a team.

Who Can Nominate?

Anyone can nominate themselves, a fellow state employee, or team of employees that meet the nomination criteria. The nominator has the responsibility of writing up the best nomination possible to accurately reflect the nominee(s)’ accomplishment and to make sure the information provided is accurate and complete. 

Supporting Documentation

To allow nominators to provide the most convincing nominations, we will be accepting (not requiring) a maximum of three (3) supporting documents. To maintain formatting, only PDFs will be allowed, and the documents must be uploaded along with the nominations. The attached “Prep Sheet” with this year’s form questions details the document guidelines. Again, these are not required, but as an example, an official letter from a department or agency head certifying or endorsing a nomination could help tip the scales in its favor. Similarly for complicated cost savings calculations, a breakdown explaining the estimate could be provided.

Agency/Large Group Nominations

Nominators will be able to nominate an office, department, or agency, basically a group of 9 or more. We see a number of nominations that sound like department or division-wide initiatives, and work group leadership often deserves the credit along with their entire staff. Please note: Individual members of the Agency teams will not be recognized. This award is meant for a large group. 

Nominations Suggestions

The nomination questions are designed to guide the nominator through the judges’ assessment process, and each question is important in its own way, so please answer each question separately.

  • Keep your nomination simple and jargon-free so those without industry knowledge will understand it.
  • Double check that all names are spelled correctly before submission. We will not reprint plaques or certi cates due to misspellings on the nomination form.
  • If the nomination could be seen as a description of standard job duties, make sure to explain how the nominee(s) exceeded what would normally be expected.
  • Please use only direct expenses when calculating costs savings for the purpose of this nomination. Indirect costs should not be added, as these costs cannot be verified.
  • If a nomination is claiming to use technology that has been the standard for many years, such as the internet instead of mail, or the creation of a simple spreadsheet, be sure to explain why it is truly innovative. 


  1. Will I be able to return and edit my submission?

    No. Please take extra care to ensure proper spelling of ALL names on the form. 

  2. May I be nominated for more than one award in the same year?

    Yes, but only for 1 individual award and/or 1 team award.

  3. What is the maximum number on a team that can be nominated?

    No more than 8 members of a team. Agency awards are meant for teams of more than 8.

  4. Does the cost savings implementation have to come from excessive man hours or overtime hours spent?

    No, if someone develops a widget in 4 hours that creates real cost savings, it is no less important than projects requiring hundreds of man-hours.

  5. If the reviewer is unsure of something described in the initial nomination, will they call for clarification? 

    Yes. Please make sure your nomination is clear and easy to understand, but expect a follow-up call or email from TaxWatch staff researching the nomination.

  6. Are award winners expected to attend the event? 

    Yes, they are. There is an implied understanding of participation at the events. We hope that agency coordinators will stress the need for participation to the award winners.

  7. What if we want to order additional plaques for team members?

    We will provide order information for anyone who wishes to purchase another plaque at their own cost.