Product of the Year: Official rules

Official rules for the 2020 Product of the Year program, including how to enter, voting eligibility and program schedule.

Updated: 11/11/2020

Entry deadline: Sept. 4, 2020 — EXTENDED to Friday, Sept. 18, 2020, at 5 p.m. CT

About the Product of the Year program

Plant Engineering’s Product of the Year (POY) program is the premier award for new products in the manufacturing and non-manufacturing industries. The annual reader-choice program provides Plant Engineering’s audience with information about the top new product in their fields. 2020 will mark 33 years of the POY program.

2020 Product of the Year program schedule

  • Apr. 28, 2020: Entries open
  • Sept. 4, 2020: Entry deadline
    • Extended to Sept. 18, 2020
  • Oct. 16, 2020: Finalists notified via email regarding status
  • Nov. 12, 2020: Finalists announced and voting begins
    • Finalists listed in the November 2020 issue of Plant Engineering
  • Feb. 5, 2021: Voting closes
  • Feb. 15, 2021: Winners notified via email regarding status
  • April 2021: Winners announced at the annual Engineering Awards in Manufacturing Dinner in downtown Chicago
  • April 2021: Winners announced online at
    • Winners listed in the May 2021 issue of Plant Engineering

Entry form

All entries must be submitted through the New Products for Engineers database. New Products for Engineers is a unique SaaS platform that provides valuable services to engineering users who are interested in discovering new products, and vendors who would like to promote their new products to engineers. Learn more.

  1. Log into existing OR create a new Manufacturer profile in the New Products for Engineers database.
    • Visit the Global Services & Product Platform:
      • Existing users, click “LOG IN” in the top-right corner
        • Enter your log-in credentials in the pop-up window
      • New users, click “REGISTER TODAY” on the bottom of the screen
        • Select “Vendor/Manufacturer” for Account Type
        • Complete Account Details and Company Details
  2. Upload product information to your Manufacturer profile. There is no limit to the number of products you can upload to your profile or enter into the awards programs.
    • When logged into your Manufacturer profile, click on “New Products for Engineers” to expand the section
    • Provide any missing details for “Company Information”
    • Navigate to “Products” and follow the instructions to entering a product
      • Be sure to complete the Details and Categories sections for your product. Media is optional but encouraged.
      • Note: If your product listing already exists, please skip to Step 3, do not create a duplicate product listing.
  3. Select from your list of uploaded products which one(s) you’d like to enter into this awards program.
    • When logged into your Manufacturer profile, click on “Awards Programs” section and select “Plant Engineering 2020 Product of the Year.” Follow the instructions.
    • After selecting your products you will be sent to a payment page. The entry fee is $495.00 per product. Without the entry fee being paid your product(s) will not be considered for the program. See Entry fee section below for more information.

All information requested must be provided. An incomplete form or a form providing misleading or false information will result in disqualification. The entry process allows for a user to submit multiple products at once; there is no limit on how many products one user/company may enter. An authorized representative of the manufacturer must complete the entry form verifying all information. Entries must be submitted on behalf of the original manufacturer or sole supplier.

Product Categories for the 2020 POY program are: Apps for Engineers, Asset Management, Automation & Controls, Compressed Air, Electric Motors & Drives, Electrical Safety, Energy Management, Environmental Health, Fluid Handling, Lighting, Maintenance Software, Maintenance Tools & Equipment, Material Handling Systems, Plant Analytics & Design, Productivity & Training, Robotics and Safety.

Eligibility requirements

Products entered into the 2020 POY program must meet the following criteria:

  • Products must have been made first available for purchase in the North American market between Oct. 1, 2019, and Sept. 30, 2020.
  • If the entry is a new version of a previously available product, the entry must represent a major modification or redesign of the product. New versions of software must offer new capabilities and significant enhancements.
  • Products must be available for purchase in the United States.
  • All information fields on the entry form are completed and accurate regarding the product and the manufacturer.

Entry fee

The processing fee (i.e. entry fee) for the 2020 POY program is $495.00 per product entered. If payment is not received, entry will be void. Only credit card payments are accepted; Plant Engineering will not invoice or bill entrants for the POY program. If you experience an issue when trying to pay the fee online, contact Amanda Pelliccione at A receipt will be automatically sent to the email address provided when logging into the website immediately after payment has been captured. If payment is not received by Friday, Sept. 11, 2020, entry will be null and void. No refunds will be issued; no exceptions.


All entries that meet the eligibility requirements are named Finalists. Finalists receive an official Finalist logo to use in marketing efforts promoting their status to customers. Finalists are listed in the December 2020 issue of Plant Engineering and on the website mid-November. The Finalist listing remains on the website indefinitely.

The descriptions published for each Finalist are written/edited/copy-edited by Plant Engineering and average 100 words per product. Descriptions are based upon the description, summary, and press release provided with each product. Reviews of descriptions are not available to entry contacts or manufacturers. Once published in print, descriptions cannot be edited. The website URL included with a Finalist description will direct readers to the manufacturer’s website, not to the product listed on the manufacturer’s website directly.

Based on the voting results (see Voting for more information), each category will have a declared Gold, Silver, and Bronze winner. In the event of a tie, it is possible for more than one Gold, Silver, or Bronze winner to be awarded in a category. The Grand title is awarded to the product that receives the most votes. All winners receive an official Gold, Silver, Bronze, or Grand logo to use in marketing efforts promoting their status. Winners are listed in the May 2021 issue of Plant Engineering and on the website early to mid-April 2021. The Winner listing remains on the website indefinitely.


Voting is only open to qualified subscribers of Plant Engineering products (magazine—print or digital, e-newsletters, white papers, etc.). Qualified subscribers are encouraged to vote in as many categories for which they are qualified based on technological advancement, service to the industry, and market impact. One (1) ballot per qualified subscriber will be accepted; multiple ballots from the same qualified subscriber will be invalid. Ballots received from non-qualified subscribers will be invalid. Employees of product manufacturers with a finalist in the current program and their properties, agencies, vendors, and representatives are not eligible to vote; hence any votes received by these parties will not be counted toward the final tally.

Program contacts

Questions regarding the 2020 POY program should be directed to Amanda Pelliccione, Project Manager, at