Applying for a TNCPE Assessment

The TNCPE Assessment & Awards process is a valuable tool for any organization looking to enhance their systems and focus on building a culture of excellence. Applicants complete a self assessment based on the Criteria for Performance Excellence that is reviewed and evaluated in a five-stage process by members of the TNCPE Board of Examiners.

While Level One applications are accepted year-round, the annual cycle for Level 2, 3 & 4 applications runs from roughly from May – March of the following year. Level 2, 3, & 4 Applicants must submit an Intent to Apply to have their eligibility determined prior to submitting an Organizational Profile & Criteria Response for assessment and judging.

  • Intent to Apply

    Prior to submitting an award application, applicants must submit an Intent to Apply to confirm your eligibility for an award.

  • Application

    Applicants submit a written Criteria Response based on their chosen application level.

  • Review

    Applications are reviewed independently by each member of an examiner team before they form their consensus review.

  • Site Visit

    A team of examiners conduct a site visit to gain a better understanding of operations and processes.

  • Judging & Feedback

    The Panel of Judges reviews and determines award levels to be recognized at the annual Excellence Conference. The applicant also receives a written assessment from their examiner team.

Assessment Cycle

Prior to submitting an award application, all applicants must submit an initial $250 admin fee to allow TNCPE to confirm your eligibility for an award. Level 2, 3, & 4 applicants must also submit the Intent to Apply/Eligibility Form (including supplementary attachments) along with the admin fee. Intent to Apply documents are due May 31, 2024.

Supplementary attachments include:

organizational chart or charts

explanation of relationship to parent organization, if appropriate

Applicants will submit a Criteria Response appropriate to their application level. Please use the table provided to determine page count and response requirements. The page limits include pictures, graphs, figures, data tables, and appendices. Page limits do not include the Application Form, the five-page Organizational Profile, a glossary of terms and abbreviations, or an organizational chart. The Item Format diagram below may be helpful as you determine the scope of your response.

Award Application Requirements by Level

The Criteria response must be submitted with the Organizational Profile, Application Form, and Application Fee.

Application Fee Table

The Application Fee should be submitted to TNCPE with the application. Use the table linked below to determine your Application Fee.

Application Formatting

The Criteria response must be submitted with the Organizational Profile, Application Form, and Application Fee.

Each application is reviewed by a team of Examiners from our Board of Examiners.

The first stage is an independent review in which each examiner conducts an assessment of the written application.

After each examiner has completed their independent review, the team will meet to reach consensus on the most important strengths and opportunities for improvement for the applicant.

The team will then prepare for the site visit by identifying the appropriate questions, documents and team members to be interviewed to verify the strengths and clarify the opportunities for improvement.

Level 2, 3, & 4 evaluations include a site visit. A team of examiners will spend one to three days (based on the award level sought) at the applicant’s worksite to gain a better understanding of operations and processes. 

Applicants will receive a site visit agenda at least one week in advance of the site visit. The agenda may include a schedule of planned visits to facilities and operating units, a list of officials to be interviewed, and the names of examiners scheduled to participate.

Applicants must pay a Site Visit Fee based on the application level and the number of full-time equivalent employees. Organizations located outside of Tennessee may be asked to pay an additional travel fee of $1,000. Applicants will be invoiced by TNCPE following completion of the site visit.

At the conclusion of every evaluation, the applicant receives a written assessment by the examiner team called a Feedback Report. Feedback Reports are mailed to applicants after the site visit, judging, and editorial processes are complete. Strict confidentiality is observed at all times.

Each Feedback Report contains applicant-specific strengths and opportunities for improvement based on the TNCPE Baldrige Excellence Framework. The Feedback Report is one of the most valuable features of the TNCPE Award Program, as it may be used by applicants as an input to the strategic planning process in order to help organizations focus on their customers and improve overall performance.

Interest Award (Level 2) Applicant Workshop

After receiving their Feedback Report, Level 2 applicants host a half-day workshop that will help them understand and prioritize the examiners’ feedback.

TNCPE Excellence Awards

After the applicant has been notified of their award level, TNCPE will publish the awards for all applicants. TNCPE also hosts an awards dinner, as part of the annual TNCPE Excellence Conference and Celebration, to celebrate their achievements. TNCPE suggests the applicant use this as an opportunity to bring their staff to congratulate them for all of their hard work.

We chose to do it because we wanted to be excellent, not ordinary. It’s helping build credibility while also improving who we are.

 

– Alan Lovelace, RPM Pizza, LLC –

The {assessment} process was very well laid out, and we had lots of resources to use in submitting our application.

 

– Tina Reisedge, First Horizon –

It gave us a framework for all of the different types of things we were trying to accomplish.

 

– Elaine Boyd, TN Department of Environment and Conservation –

Investing in a TNCPE Assessment

In keeping with TNCPE’s philosophy of encouraging participation in the Award Program, the Board of Directors strives to maintain affordable program fees. In addition to an Intent to Apply Fee, applicants pay an Application Fee and Site Visit Fee – determined by the application level and workforce size. TNCPE Members receive a 20 percent discount on the Application and Site Visit Fees.

Intent to Apply Fee

A $250 Intent to Apply Fee is required for all levels with the Intent to Apply/Eligibility Form to cover costs associated with initial processing and eligibility determination.

Application Fee

The Application Fee should be submitted to TNCPE with the application. Use the table below to determine your Application Fee.

Site Visit/Workshop Fee

Level 1 Applicants receive feedback and coaching with the Bridge Workshop. Level 2, 3, & 4 Applicants have examiners on site during the application review.

The Site Visit Fee covers site visit expenses. Applicants outside of Tennessee may be asked to pay an additional $1,000 travel fee. Applicants will be invoiced for the Site Visit Fee following completion of the site visit. Use the table below to determine your fee.

Scholarships

A limited number of scholarships are available to nonprofit organizations that want to participate in the TNCPE Award Program but are limited by financial constraints. These scholarships incorporate fee discounts of up to 50 percent. Please call or email the TNCPE office for details – 615-532-4590 | contact@tncpe.org.