Set-up for success: 17 new features to power your awards program in 2022

by | Jan 17, 2022 | Articles

Whew—what a year 2021 was! (Side-eye at you, COVID! ) For many of us around the globe, the pandemic raged on and we continued to hunker down, social distance, quarantine with our families, and continue on despite the chaos around us. 

As a fully-established remote company, our team at Award Force powered onward and focused on our product—-making it the best it can be for our amazing clients who work so tirelessly to recognise excellence around the world.

We understand first-hand just how important it is to have good, reliable technology to help you get work done more efficiently, whether you’re working in a high-rise office building or your basement. 

That means that every new feature and product update we made was with you—our clients and future clients— in mind. How can we make our awards management software even better? How can we make your jobs—and lives—easier? How can we save you time? And better streamline your work? 

In just 12 months, we implemented 72 new features and made 116 product improvements—all to help you do more in less time. It was a big year for both our team and Award Force users, and sets you up for success in 2022—from big game-changing time-savers to granular updates.

Here are some of our biggest highlights!

The awards management game-changers

1. A new judging set-up wizard

It’s no secret that we offer the most powerful judging suite on the market. And now we’ve made our sophisticated options faster to implement with our new Judging fast start, a judging configuration wizard that walks you through judging set-up, step by step. Just a few clicks and you’re ready to go! 

Awards judging

2. A powerful new judging dashboard

Once your program is up and running, you can now follow the progress of all your judging with our new Manage judging view, a beautiful new dashboard designed to give you a bird’s eye view of your entire judging process. See who’s judged what, what’s left to judge, each judging configuration you need to follow, and more! Just another way to give you the information you need, and fast.

Read more: Feature focus: Judging fast start + Manage judging offer game-changing improvements 

3. Data residency: Your data stored in your region

You asked, we provided! Award Force now offers the option to store your data in a supported region of your choice. This means your program data—from entries and judging data to communications and uploaded files—is safely stored in your chosen region. And at no additional cost!

Read more: Data residency: What you need to know

 

Data residency

The automation A-team

4. New Zapier and Integromat integrations

To make it possible for you to do more with less, we embedded a new Zapier integration to the platform and offer an Integromat integration to help connect all your favourite work tools to Award Force. Easy automation without all the coding! 


Read more: Zapier + Award Force and Integromat + Award Force

Award Force automations

5. API updates

In 2020, Award Force created a whole new API, but in 2021, we expanded it, dramatically. The Award Force API now has endpoints for attachments, chapters, seasons and webhooks.

Read more: 13 Ways to use Award Force’s API to save time + streamline tasks

Tools for collaboration

6. Judging notifications

We implemented a faster way to communicate with specific judges to make it easier to let them know about important updates, such as entries waiting to be judged or an upcoming judging deadline.  

Read more: Judging best practices for awards programs

Judging collaboration tools

7. Invite users via email

It’s now possible to add users via email invite. Simply add the email addresses of the users you’d like to invite and they will receive an email to accept their invitation and create their password. #simplify

Read more: A new method to add users 

 

The international choice must-haves 

8. New languages

We added two new languages to the platform—Danish and Norwegian, bringing our total number of supported, native-translated languages to 29! This means you can run your program in one (or multiple) languages, making it possible for your entrants to enter, no matter what language they speak. 

Read more: Award Force is multi-lingual 

Multi-lingual awards software

9. A new payment gateway

Alipay is now available as an option for payment gateway when accepting payments in our platform. With the addition of Alipay, Award Force now supports 10 payment gateways, including Stripe, PayPal and more. And, as always, all funds go directly from the entrant to you. Your money is never held by Award Force and we don’t take any cut or commission.

Read more: Online payment in Award Force

The granular goodies

10. A new billing portal

Account owners can now view their Award Force account information in our new billing portal, where they can see when the account is up for renewal, upgrade the account at any time, and add and edit users.

11. Interface text customisations

We know your awards program is unique, and your awards platform should support that. This year, we released even more user interface text customisations so your awards platform can use exactly the same terminology as your program.

Customise your awards interface

12. Emojis to spice up your program 🥳😎💃

Emojis are now supported in the platform and can be added to category descriptions, content blocks, notifications, terms and interface text. 💯

 

13. Saved views + shortcuts

We love to save you time and these new features do just that. Search for the entries you need with our Advanced search feature, then save that view and access it from our new shortcuts feature on all list views. You can also share saved views with your team so everyone can see exactly what’s relevant… in a flash. 

Read more: Feature focus: Shortcuts for success

14. Multiple attachment tabs

We make it possible for you to accept any type of attachment with your entries. And now we’ve spruced up the attachment gathering process with multiple attachment tab options so you can collect supporting material from your entrants in a way that makes sense for your program. This means you could ask for photos in one tab, with specific formatting requests, and PDFs or documents in another tab, with another set of specifications. 

Read more: Feature focus: Multiple attachment tabs

Multiple attachments

15. Conditional entry pricing

Need to offer pricing based on an entrant’s response to a specific question or field? We’ve got you covered with our new conditional pricing feature. This means you can configure different pricing for members or non-members, or provide regional or student discounts, as just a few examples!

16. Bulk resubmission requests 

Our resubmission feature enables program managers to request entrants, for a variety of reasons, to resubmit their entry. It’s a helpful feature popular with programs with multi-stage entry processes. And, now, we’ve made it possible to request submission in bulk. You can simply select all relevant entries, then request resubmission. #timesaver

Requesting resubmission

Accessibility for all

17. Platform accessibility updates

We strongly believe everyone should be able to use Award Force, which is why we continually update our software to comply with the latest Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG). We made a host of improvements such as keyboard and hover focus for links, WCAG labels, visual and accessibility improvements to the entries view, and more.

Read more: Awards management accessibility

Awards management accessibility

And… coming soon in 2022!

Our engineers are already hard at work on some amazing new features and tools: new dashboards, better ways to navigate, more judging utilities, new in-app guides and tours to help you around the platform, and so much more! 

As we look back on 2021, we are so grateful to our amazing clients across the globe. We look forward to helping you recognise excellence in 2022! 

Want to learn more about the Award Force software and how it can help power your awards to new heights? Watch our demo videos, take a self-guided tour or book a call to learn more

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