About a year ago I was interviewed by John Sumser as part of his influencer series. John asked me who I was influenced by, and was a bit surprised (not by his inclusion, but because Mark was less well known across the water,) when I gave this answer:

“4: Mark Rice – Andsome People.

A recent one for me. Mark has been running multiple social recruiting campaigns with real results. These are quite different (and I’d say above all simple) in approach. I have only noticed his work over the last 9 months, and he shared real case studies at #trulondon. I think his work rivals most others in this field anywhere.”

I first came across Mark via Twitter and the #Andsome hashtag. where he has been a daily contributor to the #SocialRecruiting hashtag. He has a sharp wit, which he is not afraid to share, and an opinion on most things from gaming through to employer branding and on-boarding.

Marks career, prior to co- founding Andsome People in 1998,  includes 2 years at Bernard Hodes as Creative Director, a year as Head of Art at MacMillian Davis and 2 years at Barkers as Art Director/Creative Group Head, his first post in the world of recruitment advertising.

I heard more about Marks work at #truLondon a year ago. Mark shared two brilliant story’s about social recruiting working with I.T.V. for script-writers and runners, and with Paul’s the Bakers for Managers and other staff. I think it was the Paul’s story that first made me realise that social recruiting didn’t necessarily mean on-line recruiting, it’s more of an approach and mind-set. I now incorporate much  of this thinking in to my work integrating social recruiting, and I always think, “What would Andsome do?”

The I.T.V. story was a recruiting project, firstly to hire script writers, but not from the usual places. The long running soap Coronation Street wanted to introduce new blood. Rice created Facebook groups to suggest story lines and how episodes could finish. He ran a competition to identify the best talent, and they hired from this pool.

To hire runners Andsome created and managed a twitter account, tweeting in to the hashtag streams of popular programs, with a link to an interactive page with the opportunity to apply. The work was simple, but brilliant, built around engagement, but more importantly got results.

The Paul’s campaign was different, but no less effective. Mystery shoppers were sent out to competitor establishments to spot those staff that offered exceptional customer service, in line with Paul’s own values. Once identified they were presented with a card thanking them, with a message added in invisible ink that was revealed when added to heat, with an invitation to connect. It was different, and it worked!

The Andsome Avatar

Since their inception, Andsome People have won awards in recognition of excellent work in social recruiting. Last week, at the RAD Awards, Andsome won in no less than five categories, for their continued excellent work with I.T.V. and restaurant chain ZiZi. Most notably, they won an award for a social recruiting campaign in a non-social recruiting category, taking social in to the mainstream. You can read the story of these campaigns (and others), in a five-part series on the Andsome Blog, linked at the end of this post.

This video (stolen from Apple) is my shout out for Mark Rice and Andsome People:

Today’s post and the first of my Sunday Shout Outs, is in recognition of the excellent work Andsome have done to prove that social recruiting need not be complicated, All of the featured campaigns took plenty of hours to deliver the engagement needed to make them work. A level of engagement that is only possible in the social channels, and mostly delivered out of hours. I’m hoping we can get Mark back to #TruLondon on Feb 22′nd – 23′rd to share more of these story’s. They are after all, only around the corner, so come on Mark, come and share.

I know that Mark Rice and Andsome will not be a stranger to most of the U.K. readers of this blog, but for anyone not familiar with them, be sure to check them out.



The Andsome Blog

Andsome People

Mark Rice

ITV Experience

ZiZi Talent (Look at this one!)

The RAD’s Winners

John Sumser’s Influencer Project Interview