The company says that the 2022 group has successfully completed the programme and is set to advance their careers within the organisation and in the industry; the company is looking forward to welcoming the interns of 2023.

TBWA\SA Group CEO Luca Gallarelli adds that the result has been tremendous, opening up a healthy and fast-growing pipeline of fit-for-purpose digital and data talent while also helping accelerate the transformation of the agency collective and industry at large.

"Being the disruption company demands that we live in a constant state of restlessness with our orientation always being to reach higher. We realised that getting the right candidates on board with such specialist and rare skills is difficult and expensive, with poaching and competition on the rise. The current problem is that there is a shortage of quality digital and data talent," says Gallarelli.

The need for performance marketing, end-to-end measurement, e-commerce and other solutions saw agencies scrambling to meet demand, according to TBWA\South Africa.

Gallarelli adds, "I think agencies were in a bit of trouble, but across the TBWA\ collective, we decided to think differently about an old problem. Within a few short months, we recruited our first five candidates who have successfully completed the programmes, and some have gotten jobs with TBWA agencies, while some went on to further their studies."

"It's an achievement we are immensely proud of. And we're seeing other businesses in the collective requesting the same process, tools and training to drive their future talent objectives," says Gallarelli.

The TBWA\SA approach relies on bringing talent into a fully immersive experience where they attend essential meetings, briefs, pitches and strategy development and shadow only the best. Interns are not given the standard mundane jobs; they meet with leaders rather than middle managers. Critical thinking and soft skills are also developed — key but often forgotten parts of traditional training programmes.

"The TBWA\SA internship helped a lot. I have learned valuable skills, soft and hard, and I better understand the brand communications industry. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity that TBWA\SA has given me," concludes Cherezaad Samuels, one of the 2022 interns.

For more information, visit You can also follow TBWA\SA on FacebookTwitter or on Instagram.