UK Career Development Awards 2021



We are delighted to launch eight major award categories in 2021:

  • Four individual awards

  • Four best practice awards encompassing SEND; employer engagement; technology and research

UKCDA 2021 event brochure                                                                                         Book Your Place here

The aims of the UK Career Development Awards

  • To identify and promote excellence in career development
  • To celebrate and generate a sense of pride in the career development profession and our partners
  • To raise the profile of career development and the CDI

Award categories                                              

1.1 Individual best practice awards          

  • Career Adviser/Coach of the Year 
  • Careers Leader of the Year 
  • Careers Service Manager of the Year 
  • Rodney Cox Lifetime Achievement Award (awarded by the CDI Board) 

1.2 Best practice in special needs and employer engagement

  • Careers Programme in a Special School/College  
  • Innovative and Impactful Employer Engagement Activity 

 Entrants to these awards do not need to be CDI affiliate organisations, although this is encouraged.

1.3 Best practice research and technology awards

  • Research Undertaken by a Careers Professional 
  • Use of Technology in Career Development

Submitting your entry(s)     

2 UKCDA-Logo-2021Please do not be shy about applying. Self-nominations and entries from student members are welcomed and encouraged.

             Notes for Entrants 2021          Entry Form 2021

Eligibility criteria

In order to be eligible to receive an individual best practice Award, you must either be a member of the CDI or an affiliate organisation.

Entrants to the Career Programme in Special Schools/Colleges and Innovative and Impactful Employer Engagement Activity best practice Awards do not need to be CDI Affiliate Organisations, although this is encouraged.

The Rodney Cox Lifetime Achievement Award will be nominated, agreed and presented by the CDI Board, led by the elected President.

Award presentations move online                     

Restrictions imposed as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, mean that we cannot announce the winners at our traditional Awards Dinner, the second week in March. In this time of uncertainty we all need a little cheer, so in 2021, the UK Career Development Awards are going digital as we announce 3 days of celebration from Tuesday 9 March to Thursday 11 March.
All the Awards will be presented online, using the Zoom platform. The Awards presentations will start at 3.30 pm each day and finish at 5.00 pm. Attendance will be free and work colleagues, friends and family will all be welcome - the invite and link will be published in early February.
Each event will start with a short keynote presentation from a career thought leader, politician or recognised career development academic.
Book Your Place here

Award presentation dates

                                             Individual Best Practice         +        Project-Based Best Practice Awards

Tues 9 March             Career Leader of the Year    Careers Manager of the Year    Use of Technology in Career Development

Wed 10 March           Career Adviser/Coach          Employer Engagement           Careers programme Special School/College

Thurs 11 March          Fellowships                          NICEC - Bill Law Award            Rodney Cox Lifetime Achievement

Time lines

The closing date for entries is Friday 8 January 2021 at 17.00. Please email to

The Board will shortlist in January and the final judging panels will be held in February 2021.

All short-listed entries must attend the appropriate presentation event.


It is our aim that the Awards event and all individual Awards will be sponsored. 

We are currently seeking an overall sponsor and several individual Award sponsors. For more information, please email

If you have any questions please email or