CHI&Partners Opens Doors to Non-graduates with New Inclusive Spark Scheme
CHI&Partners is this week launching a new entry-level recruitment scheme, SPARK – appealing to ambitious people from all backgrounds to apply to come and work at the top 20 agency, which was the UK’s most-awarded independent creative agency at this year’s Cannes Lions.
From school-leavers and young people with vocational as well as university training, to those moving into advertising from other industries, SPARK aims to attract diverse new talent to the agency – building on its skillsets and culture, and bringing new experience and thinking to its creative output.
CHI&Partners, which was this year listed by TheJobCrowd as the third best advertising agency for graduates to work for, has also stripped requests for CVs and photos from its application process. Instead, applicants will simply be asked to answer four creative and strategic questions before coming to meet the team in November. A number of candidates will then be selected to begin working with CHI&Partners in January 2017, with another intake following in September 2017.
Sarah Golding, CEO at CHI&Partners, said: “Bright minds exist everywhere, and our industry more than any other needs horizonless thinking, fresh ideas, broad experience and new blood to thrive. It could not be clearer we need to embrace talent from all backgrounds, communities and ethnicities to make that happen. Equally, as university fees become more and more prohibitive, we like many others feel our industry is closing the door on talent by continuing to look for university-level qualifications on CVs.
“We could not be more excited to see what great thinkers, creators and doers SPARK brings through our doors. Whether you’re a tech whizzkid, a creative thinker, a brilliant organiser or a budding entrepreneur, please do apply and let us know how you can help us make more great work and inject new vitality into our fantastic industry.”
Fern Nott, Head of Talent at CHI&Partners, said: “We all know diversity is a big issue for the industry. Our communications need to speak to everyone in society, not just the select few who look and speak like us. Unconscious bias is a part of human nature – people naturally gravitate towards people who are similar to them; we all do it all the time. Removing CVs and photos from the application process means we won’t unconsciously favour people who went to the same school as us, or who have the same hobbies. We’re letting the talent speak for itself.”
As well as offering access to training through CHI&Partners’ IPA membership and the agency’s own proprietary ‘&Academy’ scheme, SPARK will provide an introduction to the cross-discipline expertise of The&Partnership’s content, media, PR, data analytics and CRM agencies – giving candidates a comprehensive of the marcomms industry.
Candidates can apply through CHI&Partners’ website until 7th November, and are also invited to attend an Open Evening on Thursday 13th October at 6pm.
The launch of SPARK follows new recruitment initiatives at CHI&Partners over the past year including partnering with The Big Bang Creative Internship Scheme and The Prince’s Trust to offer young people from less advantaged backgrounds an introduction to the creative industry; and enrolling on the IPA’s BAME scheme to offer more recruitment opportunities to Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic candidates. The agency also works with Access Aspiration, a work experience charity co-founded by The&Partnership partner Jenny Halpern Prince, which helps young people from disadvantaged backgrounds gain experience in industries they are passionate about.