Aiming to promote equality and diversity while creating role models and eliminating discrimination, the awards are now open for nominations. This year's ceremony will culminate in a glitzy bash in Manchester, supported by the likes of actor and broadcaster Stephen Fry and singer Beverley Knight.
"Even in today's modern society we are still tackling issues of prejudice and discrimination," says Fry. "So it's important to come together and focus on those who have demonstrated an outstanding work ethic in order to enhance equality, diversity and inclusion."
There are a number of award categories but the ones focused on small businesses are:
Entrepreneurial Excellence - This will recognise individuals who have best demonstrated expertise in assembling resources, creating an organisation, decision-making under uncertainty and creatively solving problems. The award is split into sections to recognise those businesses that have excelled within a particular diversity. They are age, race, gender, disability and LGBT (lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender.)
Diverse Company Award - This award will identify a company that employs a diverse workforce and is able to understand the demographics of the marketplace it serves. Its goal should be to reassure and encourage people from the most deprived areas to further their careers.
To get involved in the awards through nominating, sponsoring or just supporting, click here.