England VA of the Year 2017 Winners
10th November 2017: Global PA Skills & Career Conference at The May Fair Hotel, London played host to this year's Final for England's VA of the Year 2017.
The Panel of Judges had to consider, ponder and deliberate over the finest VAs from the Regional finals that had been previously decided throughout the year - those Regional Finalists being:
Ellie Bekalo of Virtalent - Midlands
Fiona Macpherson of Support 4 Success - North East
Jane Moore and Helen Burton of Queen Bee PA - North West
Joanne Manville of Joanne Manville Virtual Assistance - South West
Lucy Tipler of Your Loyal VA - South East
From left to right: Fiona, Ellie, Helen and Jane
Overall winner: 2017 England VA of the Year - Fiona Macpherson of Support 4 Success
John Palmer, Chair of the Awards Panel said, "England's VA of the Year candidates for 2017 continue to indicate how standards and innovation continue to thrive and not surprise in the VA sector! The benchmark standards are now so consistently high that the smallest error on entry application forms almost certainly rules out potential award candidates with otherwise strong profiles and successful business models. The judges are looking for as close to perfection as possible, just as any cynical prospective client would do in choosing their next VA business support partner."
"Without doubt, this year's regional winners continued to uphold the high standards of recent years, and a number of this year's entries have previously entered and also won awards in this competition and in other local and national business awards."
"What is interesting is that almost everyone appears to be learning from the processes, as we observe that returning applicants are often going one better than the level they achieved in a previous year or entry."
"Two of this year's finalists have previously been regional runner-up, and we have also seen finalists step up from the Best Newcomer VA category to contest for the England VA of the Year title. By setting the challenges for the Best Newcomer VA so early in their business development (up to 15 months), that is exactly what we had hoped to see evolve when we set those category parameters in the revised criteria that have operated since 2014. We had suspected that we would see early stage VA businesses adopting the highest standards as early as possible - and it's happening."
"The business community can rest assured that any of the Award winning Virtual Assistants will likely provide a great standard of support and professional skills for their business."
"We must also say a huge thank you to all of the Judges and Awards Panel who have supported the UK VA Awards throughout 2017, and also our England VA of the Year 2017 Final hosts Global PA Association. Many, many thanks for all your kind support and superb hospitality."
England VA of the Year 2017, Fiona Macpherson, now automatically qualifies for the final of the UK Outstanding VA, with announcements and award presentations being made at the UK VA Conference, Olympia, London on Thursday, 1st March 2018.