17 local organisations honoured at best-performing companies conference






Organisations from the tourism and hospitality, advanced manufacturing, housing, voluntary and public sectors across the island of Ireland have been recognised at the Best -performing Companies Conference and Awards.


Organised by the Centre for Competitiveness and supported by Balcas, Belfast Harbour, Bombardier, FastHouse, Northern Ireland Electricity Networks and Tourism Northern Ireland the conference, which took place at Titanic Belfast on Wednesday 13 March, celebrated the best practice and quality excellence of organisations across the island of Ireland.


The awards recognised the excellence at the heart of the 17 winning organisations.


Accepting the highest regional award that can be granted, the EFQM 2019 Ireland Excellence Award, Titanic Belfast’s chief executive Judith Owens said:


“Titanic Belfast is delighted to receive this accolade. Since starting to build the organisation back in 2011, our journey has been about developing a sustainable framework of excellence and encouraging staff to apply it to everything we do. One in five people visiting the island of Ireland arrive with the intention of coming to Titanic Belfast and we have to live up to their expectation of excellence from before they walk in through the door until after they have left.”


A total of 15 organisations received EFQM (European Foundation of Quality Management) awards at the event, and a further two were awarded the COTRI (China Outbound Tourism Research Institute) ‘China Ready’ Quality Label.


The Centre’s chief executive Bob Barbour praised all the winners who were rewarded for years of effort to build best practice and embed excellence into their organisations.


“These awards are a celebration of organisations that have gone through a robust assessment against a comprehensive management improvement framework that is used widely across Europe, and increasingly in the Middle East, China and South America. It’s the same process no matter your country, sector or size.


“The application of the EFQM framework to an organisation’s operations together with the passionate pursuit of quality excellence will help them become leaner, more profitable, more sustainable and therefore more competitive.”


Titanic Belfast as winner of the Ireland Excellence Award along is now eligible to apply for the European-wide EFQM European Excellence Award.


Attendees heard presentations from companies including Denroy, Slieve Russell, Titanic Belfast, Wheatley Group (Scotland) and Young Enterprise on critical areas of performance where they are recognised as sector exemplars.

A panel discussion on “Energy, IoT and hyper-connectivity” featured contributions from Bombardier, Centre for Sustainable Technologies at Ulster University, Energi World, NIE Networks and Smart Grid Ireland whilst the panel discussion on “Navigating a hyper-competitive marketplace” featured contributions from Denroy, Instil Software, Mash Direct, SeeSense and Tourism Northern Ireland.


Bob Barbour urged the attendees to “listen to the reliable insights in the presentations and take them back to your organisations to drive these principles into your strategies and operations in order to achieve sustainable excellence and competitive advantage.”


The Centre for Competitiveness is an independent, not-for-profit organisation that helps its members build sustainable competitive advantage by increasing productivity, quality and embedding a culture of innovation. It uses internationally recognised standards to deliver high quality assessments, training and accreditation. To find out more about their work log on to http://www.cforc.org




EFQM 2019 Ireland Excellence Award

Titanic Belfast


EFQM Recognised for Excellence (5 Star)

Moyola Precision Engineering
Slieve Russell Hotel


EFQM Recognised for Excellence (4 Star)

Technical Metals Ltd
Dromore High School
Skylon Hotel
Hilton Dublin Kilmainham


EFQM Recognised for Excellence (3 Star):

Vita Materials


EFQM Committed to Excellence:

Resilience Care
Clonabreany House.


EFQM Gold Star Service Excellence (Role Model) Award:

Driver & Vehicle Agency.


EFQM Gold Star Service Excellence Award

Miscampbell & Co.


COTRI accreditation for ‘China Ready’ organisations

Armagh City Hotel
Dunadry Hotel




Caption: From left to right; Orla Murphy (Slieve Russell), Judith Owens (Titanic Belfast), John Irwin (Denroy), Angela Crone (Bombardier), Nigel Graham (Balcas), Trevor Anderson (Belfast Harbour), Bob Barbour (Centre for Competitiveness), Paul Stapleton (NIE Networks), Aine Kearney (Tourism NI), William Ussher (Fasthouse), Carol Fitzsimons MBE ( Young Enterprise Northern Ireland), Hazel Young (Wheatley Group).


For further information, contact Susan Cleland on:

P: 028 9073 7950  

E: susan.cleland@cforc.org


About Centre for Competitiveness (http://www.cforc.org)


The Centre for Competitiveness actively supports the development of an internationally competitive economy on the Island of Ireland through supporting innovation, productivity and quality excellence in the public, private and voluntary sectors. An independent, not-for-profit membership-based organisation it helps its member organisations to build sustainable competitive advantage by increasing productivity, quality and creating a culture of innovation. It uses internationally recognised standards to deliver high quality assessments, training and accreditation. The Centre’s direct industry experience enables them to provide specific advice and support to guide businesses to sustainable business growth.


About EFQM (http://www.efqm.org)


EFQM is a not-for-profit membership foundation with 30 years’ experience of supporting organisations, from Europe and beyond, reach sustainable Excellence and even exceed it. With its carefully designed portfolio of services and a network strong of 30.000 organisations from all sectors, size and maturity, EFQM is recognised by institutions and acknowledged by leaders as a partner to success/as a key partner to success. EFQM is also the custodian of the EFQM Excellence Model, a non-prescriptive framework created by a team of experts from industry and academia that can be used to gain a holistic view of any organisation, regardless of size, sector or maturity. Since its inception, the EFQM Excellence Model has been a blueprint for EFQM members and organisations across and beyond Europe to develop a culture of excellence, drive innovation, and improve results.


About COTRI (https://china-outbound.com)

COTRI (the China Outbound Tourism Research Institute) accreditation recognises that an organisation’s staff are culturally-aware and that increasingly experienced independent Chinese tourists will be welcomed with processes and services that are tailored to meet their needs and expectations. Chinese Tourist Welcome Training is the international certified travel service standard and platform recognised by the European Travel Commission and endorsed by the World Tourism and Travel Council.


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