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Project Breakdown

A short, punchy, branded recruiting campaign.

Justin Andrews

Kids these days. They’re hard to recruit. Especially when you’re in the tech industry.

Fortunately, Thoughtworks is full of stories where people thrive.

  • They crush meaningful work

  • They grow in their career

  • They’re encouraged to bring their personality

So when Thoughtworks aimed to ramp up its recruiting efforts, they wanted to turn to these stories into a campaign.

The initial idea: Interview recent graduates at Thoughtworks to speak to their experience.

After a lot of consideration, we pivoted the concept to short, punchy stories. Let’s dig in.

To film or not to film.

Film is great. We love filming interviews.

  • An hour long interview can deliver a handful of deliverables at various lengths

  • It can be super personal and authentic

  • It’s nice to see people smile

But filming interviews is limiting.

  • You can only really film in one location (unless you can increase the budget)

  • One location restricts the possible interview candidates (for a global team like Thoughtworks)

  • Messaging can get a little muddy and unclear

  • It tends to be ‘the standard’ for these types of projects

  • It restricts deliverables to “when folks can film”

So for this one, we proposed ditching live action filming. No interviews.

Instead, we rooted this concept in powerful, short scripts and leaning into a personalized motion design style with some UGC content.

This would allow us to capture any great story regardless of where it lives. Removing this limitation allowed us to source the best stories and a variety of stories.

Curating and scripting stories with pop.

Ok. But how do you make a story pop?

We talked to real humans at Thoughtworks. We interviewed them on Zoom. We hung out with them.

Then, we took their life and collapsed it into a 60 second script. We missed tons of good parts (obviously), but whittled it down to fun personalized stories of accomplishment and impact.

For each of the four initial stories, we wrote a few drafts. Adjusted with our friends at Thoughtworks. Shared with the subject to make sure it was cool.

And it was cool. The stories felt like the individuals, while simultaneously feeling like Thoughtworks.

Designing with personality and brand.

What’s a story without visuals? It’s still a story. But… these visuals… we want to brag about them a little (and we don’t even like bragging).

We’ve been with Thoughtworks through many iterations of design. We even worked with their team on a video to usher in their brand new brand (which was made internally by some talented Thoughtworkers).

So how could we stay on brand while bringing something fresh to this campaign?

The answer: Breaking some rules. Getting uncomfortable. Mixing it up.

We pushed things a little too far. We don’t mind admitting it. Then, we pulled it back and dialed it in.

The result? A unique, but on brand campaign that introduced new ideas to the team at Thoughtworks.

  • UGC elements like selfie-photos

  • Tactile elements like cutting out real clouds

  • All wrapped around standard brand elements

Celebrating a win.

Good things happen when people come together with a goal to make something awesome.

When people aren’t afraid to get uncomfortable.

When people trust each other.

When stories are allowed to be personal with personality.

You don’t just end up liking your videos. You love them.

And that’s what happened here. Feedback from stakeholders has been incredible. Ideas from this campaign were quickly embraced in new campaigns.

And we happily added this project to our portfolio.