Lori Bring, vice-president, talent acquisition, Rapp
’Fiercely individual’ is a phrase we use a lot at Rapp, a motto that really resonates with young talent. Not only do we drive personalized advertising, but we hire young talent from all walks of life who add to our culture v simply fitting in to a certain mold. We can’t market to the world if we don’t represent the world. In addition to partnering with several HBCUs to get young, diverse students excited about advertising and the work we do here, we have also moved away from mandating a college degree.
Further, we initiated a new program called ’Emerging Leaders,’ where we train and mentor high school graduates who don’t have the luxury of attending college. They learn about the advertising industry and the work we do over the course of one year. Then, if they chose, they become a full-fledged RAPP employee. We can always do more, but are excited by making some real progress in attracting and retaining diverse talent.
Phil Case, president, chief client officer, Max Connect Digital
I am one of those ‘outside candidates.’ I didn’t study marketing or advertising in college, but instead fell in love with it through an internship. Reaching the next generation is easier than one might think – we just have to show them what the industry offers.
At Max Connect, we partner with colleges and high schools to incorporate advertising into a career-specific curriculum, and host career days for all. We provide internships to high school students along with the college kids so they can envision a future career. Above all, it’s important to mentor young students and become a willing resource in the local community.
Holly Maguire, UK chief executive officer, Superunion
Put simply, the next generation of talent wants more agency in an agency. Research we’ve conducted at Superunion with this age group shows they have the same life goals and affluential aspirations as every generation before them. However, they’re not willing to accept the same well-trodden paths to success and, in the inimitable words of Sinatra, prefer to do things ‘my way.’
Acknowledging this need for empowerment, entrepreneurialism and rapid reward is key to attracting new talent – embracing and encouraging their side hustles and unleashing this ‘hustle’ and individuality in their work with clients. This is something we do with all talent, regardless of tenure.
Jazmen Edwards, talent specialist, RPA
Making advertising an attractive career option is all about showing off how amazing our culture is. Advertising is a creative and collaborative field, and being able to express yourself, your thoughts and your feelings is not common across all fields of work. Accessibility to ERG groups is also very attractive to school-age students – having established groups where an employee from a minority group can feel safe to talk is key for new hires and retention. If the culture of the agency is shown, students will gravitate toward advertising. What is more attractive than a safe space to be creative?
Jamie Williams, managing partner at Isobel
I don’t think it’s true that young school pupils are uninterested in a career in adverting. I just think that most never have the chance to think about it. At Isobel, we try to tackle this head on with our Isobel Summer School. Building every year, we partner with local London schools and offer GCSE-year pupils the opportunity to work in a creative agency for a week. They work in every department, they are set briefs, they produce work and we invite industry-recognized chief executive officers and political leaders to judge their presentations. The pupils tend to start off unsure and sometimes nervous, and more often than not leave passionate and enthusiastic about a career in the creative industries – because, deep down, it’s lots of fun.