NZ Police recruits Ogilvy & Mather

Following a pitch process involving four agencies, New Zealand Police has appointed Ogilvy & Mather as its lead agency to drive its recruitment campaigns.  

NZ Police head of brand and engagement James Whitaker would not be drawn into naming the other agencies involved in the pitch.  

Whitaker says that each of the agencies involved was given a brief and asked to present an idea that could potentially be used in an upcoming recruitment campaign.  

“We undertook a collaborative approach with all agencies, working with them as if we had already engaged them,” he says.

Nielsen’s rate card data, which serves as more of a guide than an accurate figure, provides that NZ Police spent around $1.3 million dollars on advertising between October 2014 and September 2015. However, Whitaker says the organisation has a had a budget of $811,000 per financial year to cover all aspects of its recruitment marketing activity. 

New Zealand Police deputy chief executive of public affairs Karen Jones says that while the government body was impressed with the efforts of all the agencies involved, Ogilvy’s thinking stood out during the pitching process.   

“Ogilvy & Mather demonstrated an in-depth understanding of our mindset and our need,” says Jones. “They’ve also shared a campaign direction that we believe will resonate well with our target audiences of empathetic 18- to 29-year-olds from a wide range of cultures and communities.”

Jones explains that recruitment of new staff members is essential to ensuring that the organisation has the resources to meet its responsibilities.    

“To fulfil our goal of keeping New Zealanders safe and feeling safe in their homes, on the streets and on the roads, NZ Police needs to recruit a range of quality candidates that reflect the diversity of our communities,” Jones says.

Prior to the appointment of Ogilvy, the NZ Police account was with Clemenger BBDO, which took over the business in a caretaker capacity after the capitulation of M&C Saatchi.

While in charge of the account, M&C Saatchi won two gold Effies at the 2013 edition of the awards show for the well-received ‘Do something extraordinary’ campaign.


More recently, NZ Police has targeted women with its ‘Women in Blue’ campaign, which is also the subject of a TVNZ television show.  


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