2011 Ri High Fiver goes to Belgium

On a bitterly cold night in London, the sixth annual Ri High Fiver award went to Belgian employer marketing communications agency Insilencio, recognising their leading-edge work for telecom, IT and media business Belgacom.

The event took place on the evening of Tuesday 7th February in the Riverside Room at the Savoy Place headquarters of the IET.  Welcoming guests, Ri5 co-founder and editor Bob Anthony said the Ri Fivers were the only regular recruitment awards to be judged exclusively by senior creatives, thus showcasing the industry’s most brilliant work and helping to keep creativity in the limelight.  Bob also thanked IET recruitment media manager Andy Dingley and his team for their continuing support in hosting the awards.

The evening began as usual with the presentation of the monthly prizes.  This being the first such ceremony since the Ri Fiver judging process was revised to enable the participation of more industry-leading creatives, there were just six awards to be distributed.

The first of these, for March, went to Blaze Advertising of Sydney, Australia for their multimedia campaign aimed at attracting bright graduates to the state of South Australia.  (Unfortunately no-one was available from Blaze to make the 20,000-mile round trip to collect the award, so it fell to Andrea Burrows – MD of Blaze’s London affiliate aia Worldwide – to do the honours.)  This was followed by the April award, which went to TMP Worldwide for their astute ‘Find your place’ direct marketing campaign on behalf of Surrey County Council, targeting prison librarians.  (Unfortunately no-one was available from TMP to make the two-mile round trip to collect the award.)

Mark Beavan, head of digital for ThirtyThree in Bristol, accepted the June/July award in recognition of the agency’s careers site for Claire’s (‘Why do people love working at Claire’s?’).  The next two awards both went to aia Worldwide – for Thales (‘We love…’) in August/September, and NATS (air traffic controllers) in October; both were gratefully received by digital art director Ben Harlow and account director Layla Wood.  The year’s final award, for November/December, went to Insilencio of Mechelen in Belgium for a very innovative multimedia campaign targeting top talent for Belgacom.  Happily, head of strategy Tom De Wachter and project manager Laurens Van Dessel, along with Belgacom’s HR manager branding & communication Vicky van Elten, had made the trip to collect the prize.

Then it was time for the assembled judges to earn their welcome refreshments by selecting the 2011 High Fiver from among these half-dozen worthy candidates.

As a fitting prelude to the top award, the fourth annual IET Prize was announced, saluting the year’s best recruitment work in the engineering and technology sector.  Presenting the award, IET editor-in-chief Dickon Ross said that it had been “near impossible” to come up with a clear winner, given the unprecedentedly high standard of entries.  In the event, the judges had been moved to select no less than three runners-up – TMP Worldwide’s ‘creative journeys’ MPU banner campaign for Jaguar Land Rover, McQueen’s ‘Solved’ magazine (“the antithesis of typical graduate brochures”) for Babcock, and GCHQ’s headline-grabbing ‘cyber jobs’ campaign, also from TMP Worldwide.  But, inevitably, there could only be one winner, and the palm went to Euro RCSG Riley for the “iconic simplicity” of their TfL ad for signal engineers.

The suspense continued to build as the votes for the final award of the night, the Ri High Fiver for 2011, were collated.  Strong support was seen to emerge for two entries in particular – TMP’s Surrey County Council campaign for prison librarians and Insilencio’s work for Belgacom.  But the very last vote to be cast tipped the scales in favour of the latter, resulting in a narrow but fully merited victory for the Belgian agency.

“This piece has shown beautifully how to engage an audience across multimedia,” commented one of the judges.  “Art direction superb and production excellent – a worthy winner!”  “The general direction in which recruitment communications needs to head,” said another.  “A well constructed viral with a thorough social media campaign to back it up,” said a third.  “Good to see something executed so well.”

Tom, Laurens and Vicky then returned to collect the top award (pictured above), making it a very rewarding visit to the UK!

Ri5 adds its congratulations to all the winners.  And if you want to stand a chance of winning next year’s Ri High Fiver – now a truly international competition, as the result proves – don’t forget to enter your best work (still free of charge!) for our regular Ri Fiver competitions.

Pictures of the evening can be viewed here

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

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