The awards are being run as part of this year's VQ Day, which will take place on 4 June 2014 to celebrate the benefits and opportunities of a vocational career.
There are two categories for employers – SMEs with 249 employees or less and large employers with 250 employees or more.
Employers are also being encouraged to nominate their most talented and dedicated employees for the VQ Learner of the Year award.
Deadline for entering the awards is 2 May 2014. All entries will be judged by a panel of experts, and the winners will be announced at the VQ Day Awards ceremony on 3 June in Westminster, London.
VQ Day was established by the Edge Foundation in 2008 to raise awareness about the benefits of vocational training and careers.
A recent survey of 2,000 18-35 year-olds commissioned by the Edge Foundation revealed that many young people are being actively discouraged from choosing vocational training over an academic route, with only a quarter of parents supporting a vocational career choice.
However, the survey revealed that there was very little difference in terms of salary, success, fulfilment and overall job satisfaction between young people that had chosen academic and vocational education.
This is in line with research from the 2012 First Steps to Wealth Report, which revealed that graduates and apprentices have relatively comparable lifetime earnings.
Jan Hodges, CEO of the Edge Foundation: “At Edge, we acknowledge that there are many paths to success - vocational education is one of many routes available for people looking to gain qualifications suited to their individual skills and needs. It is imperative that vocational qualifications are seen by society as on a par with other qualifications.
“VQ Day is an opportunity to celebrate vocational achievement. This year we have revitalised the awards to celebrate not only the successes of VQ learners and employers but also to recognise vocational education teachers and trainers who have inspired and helped their learners to gain the technical, practical and work-related skills to get the edge in their chosen careers.”
The hospitality industry is a huge supporter of vocational education and training.
Last month, the Careers Colleges Trust said that a quarter of all companies that registered interest in its new Career Colleges were in the hospitality industry.
However, the industry can struggle to recruit staff. A Barclays survey at the beginning of this year revealed that 46 per cent of businesses are still ‘struggling’ to get sufficient skilled labour.
The British Hospitality Association (BHA) has teamed up with Barclays in a drive to create 120,000 new jobs in the sector by 2015 and promote the career paths available to young people in the hospitality industry.
To find out more about the VQ Day awards or submit an entry, visit: www.vqday.org.uk/vq-awards
Looking for a career in hospitality, or looking to recruit staff for key positions in your company? Visit BigHospitality Jobs, which specialises in vacancies in restaurants, hotel, pubs, bars and clubs.