Posted 18th December 2011

Finding Talent, the Fi Way


Digital advertising is growing at a rapid pace, leaving many interactive and digital shops asking “Where’s the digital talent?”

With clients ranging from Google, HTC and CBS News to Ducati, Red Bull and Porsche, Fi places very little value on formal education or what’s on a candidate’s resume. In other words, having a Harvard MBA or spending 4 years working on a 30-person development team at deep-pocketed big agencies aren’t that impressive. Conversely, there are two things that will get a candidate through the door at Fi – passion + talent. As CEO David Martin always says, “When you hire the right talent, it shows in the quality of work.”

So when most agencies are looking at new business opportunities or profit-and- loss margins, Fi is looking at recruitment. To attract people with a genuine love for all things digital, meticulous attention to detail and the ability to anticipate challenges before they occur, we have tailored our recruitment approach to go beyond using online recruiting sites or recruiters.

Fi believes referrals from our most talented people are one of the most effective recruitment strategies. In fact, over 75% of the agency’s new hires across all 4 of our global offices (London, New York, San Francisco, and Stockholm) came directly from employee referrals.

Another unconventional, but very successful, channel for finding the right people is online and social networks. Our agency’s top creatives are huge advocates of sites like Cargo Collective, Vimeo, Behance and Dribbble. For example, looking at what digital portfolios our Creative Director Anton Repponen is following, commenting and sharing across his social networks can be very helpful in narrowing our search in a more focused and relevant way.

In the 12 years since Fi launched in 1999, we’ve also learned that talent has no geographical boundaries. If a person is at the top of his game as a UX Designer and lives in Manchester, England, or a person has built a stellar reputation as an interactive developer in Russia, we’ll do whatever it takes to make a home at Fi for those people. From international work permits and visas to relocating foreign staff into temporary housing for months at a time, Fi is more than happy to make the investment in talent. We have people from England and Greece in our Stockholm office; we also have people from Mexico and Russia in our New York City office. We’re multicultural.

These are just a few of our unconventional recruitment tactics. If you look at the recent digital projects Fi has created for brands like Google, CBS News and HTC, you’ll understand why recruitment is our #1 business priority and more importantly, why it’s working so well.