Inside out of Pause Awards

5 June, 2023
Inside out of Pause Awards | News | Pause Awards
Ann Nounce profile pic
Ann Nounce
5 June, 2023

Experience the prestige and advantage of Pause Awards, Australia’s leading recognition programme for innovative businesses. Learn how our rigorous and fair evaluation process, powered by industry experts, can provide your company with the validation and exposure it needs for success.

Welcome to Pause Awards, Australia’s premier annual recognition programme, celebrating the most daring and effective businesses and individuals. Since our establishment in 2018, we’ve been transforming the business landscape by recognising and honouring innovation, performance, and strategy. 

Guided by industry leaders, we set the benchmark for business excellence, not just awarding success but fostering an ecosystem of innovation and ambition. Are you ready to be part of this revolutionary journey? Dive in to learn more.

How does it work?

Pause Awards isn’t your average awards programme. We delve deeper, championing a more holistic approach to recognising and rewarding ambition and effectiveness.

Unlike conventional systems that simply measure revenues or rely on vanity metrics, we examine your company’s breakthrough moments. These are the pivotal points where your business truly pushed the boundaries, took the road less travelled, and came out on top. These game-changing moments offer a more accurate reflection of your company’s real accomplishments, resilience and capacity for innovation.

Pause Awards operate through a robust two-round judging process. In the first round, judges anonymously assign scores based on Smart Tactics, Business Success, and Positive Impact for each entry, with the average score forming the final result. New this year, we’ve introduced the Investable Score™, indicating a company’s appeal to potential investors and adding another dimension to the evaluation process.

It’s not just about what’s on paper but rather the significant leaps, the calculated risks and the audacious ideas that have pushed your business towards growth and transformation. By focusing on these defining moments, Pause Awards truly honours the spirit of innovation, painting a vivid and authentic picture of your company’s journey to excellence.

What is the benefit?

By entering the Pause Awards, you can quickly and easily gauge your yearly performance. Our senior industry experts offer affirmations of your company’s direction, recognising your accomplishments on a national level. Plus, you’ll gain exposure to our expert judges, mentors, media and potential investors.

Beyond winning, participation in the Pause Awards encourages introspection and feedback, helping companies better understand their strengths and areas for improvement. Winners and finalists enjoy industry-wide prestige, leading to increased visibility and credibility.

Pause Awards is an independent, industry-led initiative. Winners become part of an authentic, interconnected community that is supportive and helpful. It’s not just an accolade; it’s an affirmation of your hard work, innovative spirit and ambitious mindset.

How are we different?

Pause Awards distinguishes itself from other award programmes in several key ways:

  • It’s All About The Breakthrough
    At Pause Awards, we’re not interested in vanity metrics or future projections. Our focus is on your breakthrough moments – those pivotal milestones, initiatives or projects that have significantly impacted your business journey. We reward the clear demonstration of your ‘aha moment’ – the strategies, direct results, and their influence on your business.
  • More Than Revenue
    We know that measuring success is more than just tracking revenue growth. That’s why we emphasise your actions from the past year. We recognise and celebrate your specific achievements and provide an industry benchmark for your performance that measures both ambition and effectiveness.
  • Mentorship Opportunities
    As a top winner of the Pause Awards, you don’t just receive recognition – you gain invaluable mentorship from leading figures in the business and tech community. It’s an opportunity to glean insights from the wealth of knowledge and experience held by industry heavyweights like Paul Bassatt and open new doors to exciting opportunities.
  • Investable Score™
    We’re the only awards with an Investable Score™ – a unique addition that signals your business’s investment potential. If you’re looking to attract investors and raise capital, the Investable Score™ gives you a compelling argument to convince potential investors of your business’s worth.
  • Authenticity and Fairness
    With a judging panel of over 60 senior industry experts, we ensure each entry is fairly assessed based on merit, not brand reputation or size. Our independent approach maintains the integrity and credibility of our awards.
  • Global Standard, Local Focus
    Pause Awards are built to international standards and yet maintain a keen focus on championing Australian innovation. We’re a global platform that brings your business to an international stage while staying affordable and accessible.
  • Boost Your Brand Credibility
    Winning a Pause Award brings with it a significant boost in brand visibility and credibility, affirming you’re worthy of the Pause Awards seal of excellence.
  • Introspective Journey
    The application process can be a valuable exercise in gaining clarity about your company’s development and direction. It’s an opportunity to introspect, align your team with your core values, mission, vision and gain a clearer perspective of your company’s trajectory.
  • Wearable Recognition
    Our winners don’t just get a trophy – they receive a wearable medal inspired by Olympic medals and a TrophyNFT. It’s a testament to your success, both physically and digitally, serving as a lasting reminder of your achievements.
  • We Value Your Time
    At Pause Awards, we’re not about one-off transactions. We value your time and commitment, aiming to cultivate lasting relationships that support your ongoing success. Together, we’ll build a thriving community.

How does it help businesses?

In an era where innovation is no longer optional, recognition for exceptional business practices is paramount. Being recognised by the Pause Awards means more than just another accolade to adorn your office. It is an affirmation of your innovation’s impact, a testament to your audacious, bold steps that are reshaping your industry.

When your business wins Pause Awards, you’re not being rewarded for vain metrics or future promises. The honour comes from rigorous industry-led evaluations of your actual breakthrough moments and solid achievements. It celebrates your courage, your hard work and your real-world success.

Being associated with Pause Awards means more than just winning a trophy. It’s about gaining access to a thriving community of innovators, opening doors to potential mentorships with top business leaders, and fostering lasting relationships. With the Pause Awards, businesses are set on a path of accelerated growth, well after the event itself.

Our recognition goes beyond ephemeral applause. Winning or making the shortlist uplifts your market credibility, magnetising customers, partners and investors towards your venture. The morale boost for your team is immeasurable, and the motivation for continued excellence remains ignited.

Through the Pause Awards, your business becomes part of an influential narrative that celebrates innovation, resilience and progress in the Australian business scene.

What is the impact?

Over six years, Pause Awards has profoundly impacted businesses and the industry as a whole. In 2022, the awards grew to a $412 billion ecosystem of participants, and this year is set to break new records.

Our awards set a new standard of business excellence, fostering competition and driving innovation. Winning validation and recognition from the Pause Awards opens doors to new opportunities, collaborations, and funding.

Our ambitious winners have achieved smashing results in capital raising: Female-led Circle In landed $2M, evee overfunded 500% on Birchal $1.6M, Great Wrap raised $25M, Birchal raised in 63 min $3M, BODD closed $5M, Heaps Normal bagged $8.5M, Midnight Health closed Series B with $24M, and so on.

What do winners get?

Pause Awards are highly competitive, honouring achievements under five key Category Tracks: Growth, Excellence, Operators, Good and Culture. You can become a Finalist and win: People’s Choice, Winner, Grand Prix, Hall of Fame, Champion, or the Diamond award, our highest accolade – the best in show!

Winners are judged by the largest high-calibre judge panel in the country, get paired with iconic business mentors, receive a wearable trophy, an Investable Score™ certificate and a lifetime profile page on the Pause Awards website. They’re invited to our classy black-tie Awards Night & Afterparty, partnered events like ‘Breakfast with Champions,’ and enjoy networking opportunities with other winners, judges and partners.

Winners also garner separate press articles, video interviews for Pause Awards and become faces for the following year’s campaign. They can submit articles to our newsroom channel for a year and download badges that represent the prestigious recognition of being a Pause Awards winner. More than an award, winners become part of a supportive community they can turn to for mentoring, help and support.

News and announcements are coming out daily. Stay up to date by subscribing to our newsletter below. Try out Pause Awards by registering today or register for Info Session before September.

Let Pause Awards tell your story
Entering first-timers
Check 2023 Pause Awards winners
Pause Awards Night: the community of champs
Pause Awards Night
2023 Years Summary page is here
Summary Page

Related posts

See who won in 2023

Read more

Category tracks

The Culture track seeks entries that exemplify the development of an inclusive and collaborative workplace culture, crucial for organisational success and growth. Submissions should illustrate transformative strategies implemented across core business functions, reflecting expertise, leadership, and a clear vision. These strategies should demonstrate a positive impact on the business, its employees, stakeholders, and customers, showcasing how a nurturing culture contributes to overall growth and innovation.

The Excellence track celebrates businesses that have demonstrated remarkable success and impact within their industry, regardless of their size. Entries for this category should illustrate how the business's strategic execution, guided by visionary leadership and exceptional expertise, has significantly influenced the industry. The focus will be on the tangible outcomes of these strategies, highlighting the company's ability to innovate, lead, and leave a lasting impression in its field.

The Good track is focused on recognising companies dedicated to their mission of creating a positive societal impact. Entries should highlight innovative solutions aimed at addressing global challenges such as environmental sustainability, social equity, and community well-being. Successful submissions will demonstrate how their initiatives contribute to significant changes, tackling issues like gender inequality, social imbalance, and injustice, thereby setting a precedent for responsible and impactful business practices.

Awarded to a single entry in a category, Grand Prix is the top accolade in that category. To win the Grand Prix, the entire Judging Board must unanimously agree that the entry deserves the accolade of being the best in that category.

The Growth track is about showcasing how businesses have enhanced productivity and execution to make a significant impact in their market. Entries should highlight innovative strategies that have optimised the customer journey, leading to increased engagement and commercial success. This track is for those who have effectively used their understanding of the market and customer needs to scale their business and achieve notable growth.

The Operators track seeks entries that showcase leadership in fostering innovation within their ecosystems. Ideal submissions will highlight how your initiatives have catalysed the creation of new products or services, bolstered by a culture that uplifts internal teams and the wider community. This track celebrates those who drive progress by empowering voices and forging transformative connections in their industry.


  • Always Evolving New

    Acknowledges a culture of continuous learning and improvement within a company, encourages employee development, and always looks for ways to optimise and innovate operations.

  • Big & Mighty Culture New

    Recognises companies (51-1000 employees) for their exceptional efforts in cultivating a culture that champions innovation.

  • Diverse Co.

    Celebrates workplaces dedicated to fostering innovation through a vibrant tapestry of diverse talents and perspectives.

  • Small & Mighty Culture New

    Applauds small teams of fewer than 50 employees for their remarkable ability to foster innovation and set new benchmarks in their domain.

  • Work Sweet Work

    Acknowledges companies that have achieved extraordinary employee engagement, satisfaction, and retention, creating an exemplary workplace culture.

  • Company of the Year

    Honours an outstanding company that not only showcases exemplary leadership and resilience but also demonstrates a clear, quantifiable impact over the past year.

  • Customer Obsessed New

    Applauds prioritisation, understanding and meeting the needs and expectations of their customers, including feedback, personalised services and ensuring high satisfaction.

  • Defiant Ones

    Recognises firms that lead technological innovation, setting new standards and defining the future of their industries.

  • Hammer

    Celebrates companies that have not only defined success on their own terms but have also concretely demonstrated their triumphs over the past year.

  • I Wish I'd Done That

    Applauds ingenious, simple solutions in niche markets that spark a universal sentiment of admiration.

  • On the Rise

    Celebrates early-stage startups, under 4 years, that have shown remarkable progress and success in their initial years.

  • Prodigy

    Recognises young visionaries under 30 with outstanding talents and achievements, setting them apart in their fields.

  • Singularity

    Highlights AI-driven companies that are pioneering new services or integrating AI to create innovative products.

  • Women in Business

    Celebrates female entrepreneurs and leaders who are forging paths for future generations by creating more equitable opportunities.

  • B-Good

    Recognises businesses that redefine commercial success by positively transforming our economic system for the benefit of all stakeholders.

  • Circular Pioneer

    Celebrates companies at the forefront of circular economy practices, making substantial and sustainable differences.

  • Ethical Leadership New

    Commends companies exemplifying leadership in environmental and social governance, setting standards in corporate responsibility and ethical practices.

  • Going Green

    Acknowledges companies leading large-scale sustainable initiatives, addressing critical areas like clean energy and environmental justice.

  • Collab New

    Honours strategic partnerships and alliances with other businesses to leverage complementary strengths, access new markets, and share resources for synergistic growth and innovation.

  • Design First

    Celebrates companies where design is the heartbeat of innovation, engaging the whole team in crafting groundbreaking products.

  • Going Global New

    Applauds companies that have expanded their reach globally, showcasing exceptional growth and international success.

  • Great Pivot

    Acknowledges companies that adeptly navigate change, leveraging insights to pivot towards delivering outstanding products.

  • Movement

    Recognises unforgettable event experiences that resonate emotionally, drive social change, or achieve viral status.

  • New Model

    Honours businesses revolutionising markets with elegant and disruptive business models.

  • Next Level New

    Applauds companies which had successful strategic acquisition and integration of another entity, staff or an asset that allowed them to further grow and scale their services.

  • Wildfire

    Celebrates companies that have rapidly and significantly impacted their marketplace, online and offline, setting new standards for success.

  • Angel

    Honours visionary angel investors who've significantly contributed to early-stage startups, guiding them toward success.

  • C-Suite

    Recognises exceptional leadership qualities in high-ranking executives, showcasing their management and interpersonal excellence.

  • Creative Maverick New

    Honours unconventional thinkers with exceptional abilities to execute typically unimaginable initiatives, expertly coordinate teams, secure funding or successfully launch multiple ventures.

  • Ecosystem Star

    Celebrates individuals who energise and nurture their communities, fostering engagement and advocacy.

  • Future Builder

    Recognises the determination and resilience of founders who've embarked on the challenging journey of starting their own ventures.

  • Quiet Achiever New

    Applauds the unsung heroes whose behind-the-scenes efforts have led to flawless project executions and exceeded expectations.

  • Splash Down Under New

    Acknowledges international companies making a noteworthy entrance into the Australian market, enriching the local business ecosystem.

  • TopCoder

    Recognises developers for their outstanding technical skills, clean code, and collaborative spirit.

  • Venture Cap

    Salutes venture capital firms with a track record of backing transformative businesses, contributing significantly to Australia's economic growth.

  • Visionary New

    Recognises effective leadership by setting a clear vision, motivating the team, and making strategic decisions that guide their business towards its goals.

Early Entries end on:
00d : 00h : 00m : 00s
Enter now