skip to main content

Gallup Exceptional Workplace Award Criteria

For over a decade, the Gallup Exceptional Workplace Award has been a prestigious achievement recognizing organizations that meet the rigorous standards set by the most comprehensive workplace study ever conducted.

Organizations that meet the minimum requirements will be invited to apply and to nominate an exceptional manager for the Manager of the Year Award.

View the Criteria about award requirements Start Your Application to apply

The Gallup Exceptional workplace award

What makes a workplace exceptional?

For the world's best workplaces, engagement isn't a check-the-box activity in the form of an annual workplace survey -- it's integrated seamlessly into their workplace culture.

By centering an organization's business strategy on people and designing a workplace culture to mirror that commitment, organizations see returns in retention, engagement, increased productivity, improved wellbeing and organizational citizenship, better customer experiences, true organic growth, and higher revenue.

Criteria to Apply for the Gallup Exceptional Workplace Award

Each year, Gallup determines which organizations meet the award criteria and invites them to apply for the Gallup Exceptional Workplace Award.

Every five years, Gallup reviews client data to determine whether award criteria changes are necessary. The Gallup Exceptional Workplace Award criteria (listed below) were last updated in 2022. A panel of judges will review all applications and select winners.

The 2024 awards are based on Q12 administrations conducted between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2023.


  1. Q12 census of the organization (minimum threshold of 50 employees or more)
  2. participation rate of 80% or higher
  3. Q12 data criteria:
    • 50-<500 employees: overall GrandMean of 4.60 or higher
    • 500-<5,000 employees: overall GrandMean of 4.40 or higher
    • 5,000+ employees: 50% of direct workgroups with GrandMean of 4.20 or higher

Important Dates

Jan. 4-26, 2024: Video conference applications

Jan. 26, 2024: Application deadline

March 12, 2024: Winners notified

March 27, 2024: Winners announced and promoted across various channels

Application Details and Process

All applications must be submitted by Jan. 26, 2024.

To apply, please follow these steps:

  1. Fill out the online application, which includes long-form responses to qualitative question prompts from four categories:
    • strategy and leadership philosophy
    • accountability and performance
    • communication and knowledge management
    • development and ongoing learning
  2. Upload supporting documents through the application platform:
    • PowerPoint presentation detailing how your organization has linked engagement to business outcomes
    • Q12 engagement data
    • nomination for the Manager of the Year AwardEach organization that applies is invited to nominate one manager for the Manager of the Year Award. Nominations should include metrics for manager performance. Consider nominating managers whose teams: 1) are consistently in or above the 90th percentile in overall engagement 2) achieve outstanding business results and generate best practices within your organization Gallup will select 10 finalists for the award, and the judging panel of workplace experts will select one winner.
    • an official company logo
  3. Applicants that have won the award two or more consecutive years are encouraged to schedule a video conference with the judging panel in place of a written application. This option can be selected on the online application form.

Application Tips

Please be thorough in your responses and provide examples to support your answers.

Last year's winners should focus their application responses on what is new or different from their previous application. Gallup retains the prior year's application and refers to it as needed for your overall strategic goals and initiatives.

If you have questions about your application, please email

Manager of the Year Award

What do great managers do differently?

To recognize the essential role of the manager in the employee experience, each organization that applies for the Gallup Exceptional Workplace Award is invited to nominate one manager for the Manager of the Year Award.

What do great managers do differently?

The best managers help their employees see a future at your company and get on board with the company mission.

The best managers individualize their leadership approaches, emphasize employee wellbeing, deepen employees' strengths and coach them to greatness.

The best managers act as a driving force for ongoing performance growth and build workplaces that are engines of productivity and profitability.

The best managers align their teams with their leaders' vision for their company culture.


What happens next if your company wins?

Gallup will notify winners two weeks before publicly announcing award recipients. At that time, Gallup will provide recipients with a media kit including personalized materials to support winners in announcing and celebrating their achievements. Gallup will feature winning organizations and the manager of the year in articles on and will share and amplify news of the winners through various channels and platforms.