McCann & D&AD Recruit Candidates Through Comic Book
Applicants are tasked with completing the story anonymously, as part of a drive to identify raw talent free from gender and racial bias.
Aliens. Kissing cows. Flame-throwing women. A new zine launched by McCann London and D&AD New Blood Shift seems to have all the ingredients of a cult comic. There's only one thing missing from Kkaptionn, in fact, which is, er, captions.
It might seem weird to publish a wordless book, but it's all part of the agency's drive to embrace a more inclusive recruitment process. As part of a novel job application process, candidates will be asked to fill out the book's narrative. Will it be an intergalactic cross-species romance? Or a horrific yarn about head transplants? However they choose to tell the story, it's completely anonymous, as applicants only need to supply their phone number at the end.
By not knowing who has completed the captions, the idea is that this filters out any unconscious bias, allowing the agency to identify and hire the right candidates based on creative talent alone.
"We both always thought it would be cool to produce our own comic book series, but at the same time wanted to create something with a point of difference that would stand out," said Robin and Ella, the creatives behind Kkaptionn. "So, we decided to flip the notion of the comic book and turn the reader into the story-teller. Plus, as a creative, it isn’t every day you get to put a DIY head transplant with a chainsaw into your work.”
On top of this, McCann is also partnering with D&AD by donating copies of the zine to use as part of the application process for D&AD's New Blood Shift programme, which kicked off in London last month.
“What I first loved about the idea of Kkaptionn is that it reminded me of how blind auditions were held to help orchestras eliminate gender bias," says Laurence Thomson, CCO, McCann London. "Kkaptionn will serve to do the same for our industry. We’d also love to see Kkaptionn sit comfortably alongside independent zines in comic book shops and be loved by the zine community. It’s a story that’s waiting to be told – by anyone, from any walk of life, and could even land you a job in the creative industry. So, grab a copy, fill it in, and get to help fund D&AD’s New Blood Shift programme.”
“D&AD New Blood Shift shares McCann’s vision to find extraordinary creative thinkers who haven’t been through the conventional creative education routes," adds Hilary Chittenden, senior foundation manager from D&AD. "Kkaptionn offers the chance for creatives to show off their raw skills – their weird and wonderful ideas – without having to know what a ‘book’ is, without needing an extensive portfolio or a string of letters after their name. Any new way for D&AD to recognise creative excellence is really exciting for us, so we’re delighted that McCann is donating copies of Kkaptionn to use as part of our application process and throughout the New Blood Shift programme.”
If you want to get your hands on a copy, a limited number are available online for £6.99 each, with all profits going towards D&AD New Blood Shift programme.
To read more about the wacky ways of getting a foot in the adland door, click here.