Frequently Asked Questions

Nominations will be open June 28 – September 3, 2021. Submissions can be completed using our online form.

Here’s what you’ll need to get started:

  • Contact details of nominee (if you are nominating an organization besides your own) and institution being nominated.
  • Detailed description of the innovation that describes the innovation in terms of functionality and purpose, how it addresses business objectives or resolves problems for the organization or customer.
  • Detailed description of the impact of the innovation either to the organization or customer. (When providing information on impact, it is helpful to provide quantitative data to substantiate. However, if you are unable to provide any form of quantitative data then please provide qualitative evidence. Qualitative information that will be deemed acceptable to demonstrate impact will demonstrate that the innovation helped grow one or more of the following – customer acquisition, information on increase in adoption of product or service among existing customers, impact on brand, customer retention and even customer feedback.)
  • Supplemental documents such as marketing or promotional videos, non-commercial articles and data to support the originality and impact of the nominated innovation.

All retail financial services organizations are welcome to submit nominations for any or all appropriate categories. Qualifying financial institutions can self-nominate or are eligible for nomination from industry analysts, media and public relations firms and solutions providers.

At this time, the Awards program does not recognize vendors that self-nominate for providing services to banks. The financial service must be provided directly to the consumer. For more details, please visit the about page.

One winner will be recognized in each category. Click here for award category details.

Each organization is limited to a maximum of three submissions. Additionally, you cannot submit any one nomination to more than one innovation category. Any given nomination can only be submitted to one qualified category.

No, BAI does not accept repeat nominations of innovations submitted during a previous year. However, BAI will accept nominations of reimagined or updated innovations that have been submitted previously. If a previously submitted innovation has incorporated a new development, feature or upgrade that makes it different from its original state, it is eligible for nomination.

The nomination form will require:

  • Contact details from nomination submitter and institution being nominated
  • Choosing the innovation category that best suits the nomination
  • Details of the innovation:
    1. The title of the innovation
    2. Summary of the innovation
    3. The impact of the innovation
    4. The culture of innovation within the nominated financial services organization
    5. Collaborators or team involved

You will have the option of including any supplemental information that further illustrates the innovation or its impact. We encourage self-nomination from leading financial services organizations, including banks, neobanks, credit unions and insurance companies, as well as solutions providers and FinTechs who provide financial services offerings directly to consumers. Non-financial services organizations, such as industry vendors, media and PR agencies, and analysts are not eligible, but may nominate a banking client for the awards.

You will be able to update your nomination until the submission deadline. However, your entry may be reviewed before then. Please contact [email protected] with any questions or to let BAI know you’ve modified your submission.

The selection process involves multiple rounds of evaluation by the Innovation Circle to determine category finalists and eventual winners. Nominations are judged against two main criteria – originality of the innovation and the impact for both the customer as well as the financial services organization.

The Outstanding Achievement Award winners are specially selected by the Innovation Circle from the overall pool of nominations.

The Innovation Circle will select awards finalists and winners based on the following criteria:


  • Is it new or does the innovation extend well beyond marginal improvements to existing products, services, technologies, distribution strategies and practices?
  • What is the unique value to the customer?


  • Does the innovation demonstrate substantial improvement/benefit to the organization and customer base? Is it scalable and portable across geographies and platforms?
  • Impact should be substantiated through quantitative data or qualitative evidence of success by demonstrating that the innovation helped grow one or more of the following – customer acquisition, balance sheet or revenue. Additionally, you can provide information on increase in adoption of the product or service among existing customers or impact on brand, customer retention and even provide customer feedback.

Note that each nomination will be evaluated on the two-dimensional criteria above and weighed equally to identify award finalists.

The 2021 Awards finalists will be announced November 2021.

The finalists and winners will be contacted prior to the official announcements. All nominees will be notified whether they are finalists, winners or if they were not shortlisted.

Winners will be contacted by BAI to coordinate award receipt.

  • Worldwide Visibility
  • Prestige Among Peers
  • Valuable Recognition

Read more about Awards benefits here.

No, the awards recognize innovations from around the globe.

BAI reserves the right to refrain from selecting a winner or finalists if none naturally emerges.

BAI reserves the right to reject entries that do not meet submission guidelines.

For general inquiries, please email [email protected] or call BAI Customer Support Services at 800-224-9889. Hours of operation are 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. CST, Monday-Friday.

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