Leadership Level Formatting

In your application, include information on all of your organization’s units or subunits. Do not add links to websites. Examiners base their evaluations solely on information within your application.

Your award application must contain the items listed in the order given below:

Blank Front Cover

To help ensure confidentiality, do not include text or illustrations.

Title Page

Give the name of your organization. You may also include the address and logo, illustrations, the date, a statement indicating that this is an application for the Baldrige Award, and/or a statement regarding the confidentiality of the content. Do not include additional information, text, or links to websites.

Labeled Tabs or Divider Pages

Use tabs or divider pages to separate the sections listed below. On each, include only the section title. If you include additional text or illustrations, the pages will count toward the 50-page limit for the Responses Addressing All Criteria Items.

  • Table of Contents
  • Organization Chart(s)
  • Glossary of Terms and Abbreviations
  • Organizational Profile
  • Responses Addressing All Criteria Items

If you wish, you may also use labeled tabs or divider pages to separate your responses to the seven Criteria categories.

Table of Contents

Indicate the page numbers for the:

  • Organization Chart(s)
  • Glossary of Terms and Abbreviations
  • Organizational Profile
  • individual category and item sections

You don’t need to indicate the page numbers for areas to address, tables, and figures.

Organization Charts

  • line-and-box organization chart(s) for your organization
  • line-and-box organization chart(s) of the parent (if your organization is a subunit)

Glossary of Terms & Abbreviations

In the glossary, include only terms and abbreviations used in your application, with very brief definitions. Do not include descriptions of processes, tools, methods, or techniques in the glossary, or your application will be returned to you. See the 2019 LifeBridge Organ Tissue and Sharing Case Study for additional examples.

Acceptable examples of a glossary entry are:

  • PES: Performance Evaluation System
  • SPP: strategic planning process

The following examples are not acceptable because it includes a description:

  • PES: Performance Evaluation System used by ST members to assess associate capability and capacity when setting organizational direction.
  • SPP: strategic planning process, which has nine steps: a review of key documents, such as the research contract with the USDA; a two-day retreat; a review of funding and mandates; a review of current organizational performance; a review of an environmental scan; appreciative inquiry; brainstorming; allocation of resources; and creation of action plans.

Organizational Profile

This section outlines your organization and states the key factors that influence its operations and future directions. Examiners use this vital part of your application throughout their review. For guidelines on preparing this section, see the appropriate Baldrige Excellence Framework booklet.

Responses Addressing All Criteria Items

In this section, respond to each item as a whole, using the category and item designations in the Criteria within the appropriate Baldrige Excellence Framework booklet. In your responses to the areas to address within the items, emphasize your organization and its performance system, maintaining the order of the areas.

Label the areas to address as in the Criteria booklets (e.g., 4.2a). You may group responses for multiple areas (e.g., 4.2a, b). If an area to address does not pertain to your organization or its performance system, explain why in one or two sentences.

Discussion of results and the results themselves should be close together in a Baldrige Award application. Trends that show a significant beneficial or adverse change should be explained.

Use figure numbers that correspond to items. For example, the third figure for item 7.1 would be Figure 7.1-3.

For guidelines on responding to the Criteria, see the appropriate Baldrige Excellence Framework booklet for your organization’s sector (i.e., Business/Nonprofit, Education, or Health Care).

Summary of Supplemental Section(s). If the Baldrige Program informed you during eligibility certification that you must submit one or more supplemental sections, include a brief description of each section, listing the products, services, and NAICS codes.

Blank Back Cover

Do not include text or illustrations.

Application Format

Format your application according to the following requirements. If your submission does not meet these requirements, we’ll notify you that your application has been rejected. You will have 72 hours or until the original due date, whichever is later, to resubmit your application in the required format. Applications must be resubmitted within that time frame. For an example of the required format, see the 2019 LifeBridge Organ and Tissue Sharing Case Study

Page Limits

The limits given below include all illustrations, figures, tables, and appendixes. Covers, labeled tabs, and divider pages that contain only titles do not count toward the limits. However, if these pages contain additional material, such as process descriptions, quotations, figures, tables, or illustrations, they count toward the total page allotment.

If any section exceeds the page limit, the Oklahoma Quality Foundation will ask your official contact point to identify which pages to remove.

Organizational Profile 5
Criteria Items 50

Page & Text Format

Paper type Standard 8.5" x 11" white Two-sided printing is strongly recommended. Please ensure that both sides of pages are legible.

Paper Orientation

Text pages Portrait
Pages with graphs figures and data tables Portrait or landscape
Lines per page 60 maximum Count headings and blank lines separating paragraphs but don’t count recurring page headers such as “Baldrige Award Application page X.”
Leading 2 points (or the equivalent) between lines 1 point of leading equals 0.0138" (1/72 inches).


Left (bound side) .75" (3/4 inch) minimum
Right 0.5" (1/2 inch) minimum
Text columns 2 (preferred) Leave at least .25" (1/4 inch) between columns.


Pages in responses – Addressing all criteria items 1-50 Don't number blank pages tabs or divider pages.
Figures within the Organizational Profile and item sections In sequence Use numbers corresponding to the section (e.g. Figure P.1-1 Figure P.1-2 Figure 2.1-1 Figure 2.1-2).

Font Type & Size

Running text Times New Roman or Arial 10 point minimum Don’t use narrow compressed or condensed fonts.
The font and type size need not be uniform so long as they meet the requirements. Smaller type sizes make it difficult for examiners to interpret the data and to provide accurate and actionable feedback. If you shrink graphics to fit the space available ensure that text in the reduced figure meets the requirement.
Tables mainly filled with text Times New Roman or Arial 8 points minimum
Other graphics (charts graphs data tables and other figures) including titles and captions Any font 8 points minimum


  • See the font and type-size requirements in the table above.
  • Clearly label each figure using descriptive text. For example, the title of the third figure for item 7.1 might read “Figure 7.1-3: Reliability of Service: Carrier-Dropped Calls.”
  • Clearly label all axes and units of measure.
  • For information on using graphics in category 7 (Results), see “Guidelines for Responding to Results Items” in the Baldrige Excellence Framework booklet that’s appropriate for your organization’s sector.

Application Submission

  • Submit your application in PDF format
  • Create one PDF file, not multiple files, containing your application. Select the “embed fonts” option.
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