Training APEX Awards

The 2023 APEX Awards application (we label the application with the year in which the winners receive their crystal awards) will be available for download by April 15, 2022. It will be due September 13, 2022, and winners will be announced and learn their rankings at a black-tie Gala held in February 2023 in Orlando, FL, during the Training 2023 Conference & Expo.

About the Training APEX Awards

Training magazine’s Training APEX Awards were recently rebranded from the Training Top 100 to reflect the winners’ journey to attain peak performance in employee training and development and organizational success. APEX Awards winners are the organizations with the most successful learning and development programs in the world. Training has spearheaded this premier learning industry awards program for 20-plus years. Perhaps your organization can join the ranks of illustrious past winners such as United Wholesale Mortgage, Dollar General Corporation, Leading Real Estate Companies of the World, Jiffy Lube, Keller Williams, Verizon, and IBM.

The 2022 Training APEX Awards winners were announced the end of November 2021. Click HERE to see the alphabetical list of winners. The rankings will be unveiled during a black-tie Gala and Awards Ceremony to be held February 28 during the 2022 Training Conference & Expo in Orlando, FL. In addition, United Wholesale Mortgage will be inducted into the Training Hall of Fame after earning rankings in the top 10 for four consecutive years.

APEX Awards Criteria

All companies are welcome to apply for the Training APEX Awards as long as they are not training vendors (meaning that their primary business is not selling training products or services). The Training APEX Awards recognize corporate training overall—not just single training programs. Sections of the application include:

  • Training Program/Scope
  • Training Budget
  • Tuition Reimbursement
  • Training Infrastructure and Delivery
  • Evaluation/Metrics
  • Human Resources

APEX Awards Scoring

Scoring is explained on the opening page of the application. All applications are judged quantitatively by an outside research company and qualitatively by Training’s editor/publisher, Lorri Freifeld, and the Training Hall of Famers (organizations that earned a Top 10 placement in the APEX Awards rankings for four consecutive years):

  • BNSF Railway
  • Booz Allen Hamilton
  • Capital Blue Cross
  • Deloitte LLP
  • Dollar General Corporation
  • EY
  • IBM
  • Keller Williams Realty, Inc.
  • KLA Corporation
  • Leading Real Estate Companies of the World
  • McCarthy Building Companies, Inc.
  • Nationwide
  • PwC
  • Sonic Automotive
  • Verizon
  • 2022 Inductee: United Wholesale Mortgage

Download the scoring guidelines at:

Qualitative Guidelines
Quantitative Guidelines

Top 10 Reasons to Apply for the Training APEX Awards

#10 Bask in the limelight at the black-tie Gala for winners in sunny Orlando.
#9 Receive a comprehensive feedback report and qualitative scorecard to help identify training gaps and areas for improvement.
#8 Foster communication between internal business units and Training/Learning & Development as you fill out the application.
#7 Use your APEX Awards ranking to help your organization recruit and retain employees.
#6 Highlight your corporate culture and investment in human capital development.
#5 Earn a seat at the C-suite table by documenting training’s effectiveness in producing business outcomes.
#4 Use your ranking to demonstrate to customers your organization’s commitment to employee training and development.
#3 Become a thought leader in the industry through Training magazine articles and presentations at Training magazine events.
#2 Network, brainstorm, and share best practices with other APEX Awards winners during the Training APEX Awards Gala, annual Training Conference & Expo, and TechLearn Conference.

And the #1 reason to apply for the Training APEX Awards:
YOUR organization could be #1 on the 2023 list!

Past Winners

To read about the 2021 Training APEX Awards winners, visit:

For profiles of the 2021 Top 5 and information on the Best Practice and Outstanding Training Initiative award winners, visit:

Here are links to past lists:


Get the Inside Scoop on the 2022 Application
Tips from 3 Training Hall of Famers and Editor/Publisher Lorri Freifeld.

Download the recording at:

For more information, contact Editor/Publisher Lorri Freifeld at

Training APEX Awards FAQs

Q: What is the Training APEX Awards program?

A: A worldwide ranking of organizations that excel at training and human capital development, as determined by Training magazine. Please keep in mind that the Training APEX Awards recognize corporate training overall—not single training programs. In addition, the application only pertains to internal employees, not training for external clients.

Q: Who can apply for the Training APEX Awards?

A: Any company or organization can apply, as long as it does not provide training or training-related services to other organizations as its primary business. If it does, those services must constitute less than 5 percent of the organization’s annual revenue. All applying companies must either be a holding/parent company or a wholly owned subsidiary or division. (This does not apply to nonprofit agencies, government agencies, etc.). This is a global awards program, so companies from around the world are welcome to apply.

Q: When is the next application due?

A: The 2023 Training APEX Awards application will be available for download by April 15, 2022, and is due at 11:59 p.m. Eastern September 13, 2022. We call this the 2023 application because the Training APEX Awards Gala to recognize the winners will be held in February 2023.

Q: How do I apply?

A: Visit to download the application; fill it out; and register, pay for it, and upload it. All applications must be a Word (.doc or .docx) file (no PDFs). The form is a locked document and only text can be inserted in the answer blocks—no graphics, charts, images, etc. We have established word count limits for certain questions. Please observe the limits as closely as possible, as we have established them to cope with the volume of applications we receive and to ensure all applicants have equal opportunity to tell their APEX Awards story.

Q: How much does it cost to apply?

A: Training magazine charges a $179 application processing and handling fee.

Q: How do I pay for my application?

A: To pay by credit card, use the link on and then print out your receipt.

To pay by check, use the link on to register your application and send the check to the address listed on the site.

NOTE: If you prefer to pay ahead of time and submit your application later, that’s fine. Please pay the processing fee via the link above and e-mail your completed application later to Editor/Publisher Lorri Freifeld at

Q: When is the Training APEX Awards Gala?

A: The Awards Gala (a black-tie dinner) takes place during the Training Conference & Expo; the one for the 2022 winners will be held in person at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort in Orlando, FL, on February 28, 2022.

Q: When was content about the 2021 winners published?

A: Training magazine’s March 2021 issue includes the final rankings and feature stories on the Top 5 companies, plus Best Practice and Outstanding Training Initiative Award winners. The issue was mailed after the Virtual Gala on February 8, 2021. Visit to read the March issue online.

Q: When will content about the 2022 Training APEX Awards winners be published?

A: Training magazine’s March 2022 issue will include the final rankings and feature stories on the Top 5 companies, plus Best Practice and Outstanding Initiative Award winners. The issue will mail after the Training APEX Awards Gala on February 28, 2022.

Q: How do you arrive at the Training APEX Awards ranking?

A: The APEX Awards application is evaluated both quantitatively and qualitatively. Scoring includes 72 quantitative points and 52 qualitative points, plus up to 1 bonus point for the previous year’s ranking for a total of 125 possible points. On the quantitative side, an outside research company scores the application on five different sections as follows:

  1. Training Program/Scope (including hours of training, number of trainers, training budget, L&D involvement in business strategy) (worth 21 points)
  2. Tuition Reimbursement (worth 8 points)
  3. Training Infrastructure and Delivery (worth 7 points)
  4. Evaluation/Metrics (worth 16 points)
  5. Human Resources (including competency maps, compensation tied to training, employee satisfaction surveys, length of service and turnover, job openings filled by internal candidates, and percentage of new hires referred by employees) (worth 20 points)

On the qualitative side, Training judges (members of the Training Hall of Fame and Editor/Publisher Lorri Freifeld) look for demonstrable Kirkpatrick Level 3 (behavior change) and 4 (business outcomes) results; progress of programs; innovation; success factors; training strategically linked to measurable, numerical business/business unit goals; corporate commitment to training; the potential applicability of best practices companywide and to other organizations and industries; and the ingenuity of outstanding initiatives (usually a fairly new program that hasn’t had a chance to demonstrate long-term results) and their potential to become best practices. NOTE: We qualitatively score how well applicants demonstrate training’s part in achieving specific, measurable, numerical (quantifiable) business or business unit goals in each of the following sections: 2.1; 2.2; Best Practices and Outstanding Training Initiative; 3.1; and 3.2. So the more Kirkpatrick Level 3 and Level 4 results linking training to achievement of strategic goals you provide, the higher the qualitative score will be.

Please download the APEX Awards quantitative and qualitative scoring guidelines at the end of this article to see how questions are scored.

Q: When will I be notified if my organization is a 2022 Training APEX Awards winner?

A: Judging took place in October and November 2021. All applicants were notified if they made the list or not the last week of November 2021. E-mail invitations to the 2022 Training APEX Awards Gala will be sent out December 6, 2021.

Q: I have other questions. How can I contact you?

A: Send an e-mail to Editor/Publisher Lorri Freifeld at She will be happy to answer any questions you may have throughout the application process.