In early 2017, after a competitive pitch, BPI ROK were engaged to provide marketing, strategy and media support for Severn Trent Water’s (STW) New Talent recruitment.

The challenge was to deliver a minimum of 40 graduates per year, whilst also enhancing their status as the leading employer in the water utilities sector.


We started with the why – not the what.

Why is it important for everyone to have fresh drinking water? Have you ever wondered why every time you turn on the tap clean drinking water comes out?

Severn Trent exist to provide the very best service to its customers and, to be the leader in its sector by 2021. To do this they need the right talent. They need people with fluid thinking…


How was our approach different?

When we think about graduate recruitment we think digital. Whilst this is right – it’s increasingly harder to cut through the clutter that exists in the grad’s daily channel experience.

The sensory elements that make print unique, from touch to sight to smell, make it especially appealing for younger people. Digital deprives them of that crucial stimulus and we see this as a point of difference in conveying our ‘Fluid Thinking’ message- using tangible media to give them a physical way to assess the quality and personality of our message.

Blending digital and print to launch our creative to the audience informed, engaged and spoke to them about the things that are important to them. Our campaign headline hits the graduate’s desire to better themselves. Graduate to Expert delivers that message in a short, punchy way, supported by the tagline Powered by #FluidThinking which underpins the whole campaign.


How did we make sure the messaging hits the right person?

Thanks to thorough briefing and collaboration, our Media partner Adgen, was fully aligned with our strategy. Their media plan was drawn from many years experience working with graduate and university candidate recruitment advertising.

In order to make sure the campaign was a guess, we took the approach of a regularly reviewing the campaign to track success on a weekly basis. This consisted of a weekly reporting session with key stakeholders using a highly intelligent, internal media and advertising system (from our partner agency ADGEN) called REVS (Real-time Evaluation Visualisation System). This bespoke reporting tool collects data from both diigtal & offline media and evaluates the results, so that clients such as ST can track the user journey from initial click to goal conversion.


Did it work?

Due to strong ties in the multi-agency setup BPI ROK, ADGEN, CAPP (ATS provider) we have been able to close the loop on the candidate journey. From initial application, through to application to assessment centre – with complete tracking.

This has delivered massive changes in performance in the since the campaign was launched.

A £500 lower cost per acquisition for Severn Trent vs sector average
Increase of 64.9% in quality of candidates reaching assessment centres for 17/18
Increase in candidate pass rate through assessment centres

Was the client happy?


We think so.

“Since engaging BPI ROK (BR) in June 2017, our campaigns have evolved, and we use what we call ‘fluid thinking’. The campaign has driven a marked increase in the volume of candidates meeting our benchmarks. The service levels we received this year, and knowing that the BR team are only at the end of the phone to help us, has allowed us to work much more proactively to enhance our campaigns way beyond our expectations. Their branding and design work has enhanced the campaign and taken it to a whole new level and this has helped support Severn Trent in new ways, that were not all included in our original brief.``
Darren Page, Graduate New Talent Manager - Severn Trent Water

Marketing award finalist at



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