5 Offbeat Hiring Practices That Some Companies are Actually Using Right Now

Hiring practices
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Job interviews are terrifying.

We don’t want to ruin our chances by saying or doing something we shouldn’t (although if you take some time to prepare for the interview, you’ll do fine).

There’s also no way of knowing what kind of curveball questions the hiring manager might ask, or whether you’ll end up taking a spontaneous skills test.  

Sometimes, though, you can tell right when you apply that the interview process will be anything but ordinary.

5 Offbeat Hiring Practices Companies are Actually Using

These five unusual application processes could become commonplace as companies try out new ways to hire workers.

1. Get Ready for Your Closeup

McDonald’s restaurants in Australia begin the interview process over Snapchat. It’s amusingly called a “Snaplication.”

“We think this is actually a world first,” Shaun Ruming, chief operating officer of McDonald’s Australia, explained to news.com.au. “Snaplications is basically a Snapchat ‘lens’ that gives users the ability to apply for a job — or at least commence that process — by sending a 10-second snap.”

Ruming says the new approach is designed to appeal to the social media-loving younger crowd that makes up a large portion of its worker base.

2. Calling All Escape Artists

Mat Ishbia, CEO of mortgage company United Shore, puts applicants through their paces in a custom-built escape room at the company’s headquarters.

“Prospective employees interviewing for some positions — he doesn’t like to say which — must ‘escape’ the room before they receive a job offer,” according to Money.

3. Bring Your A (Video) Game

Some companies ask applicants to play video games to assess how well they’ll perform on the job and evaluate their strengths and weaknesses.

Keurig Green Mountain, of beverage appliance fame, asks entry-level engineering job applicants to play specific video games to tease out their personality.

“The hardest part of assessing talent is that [job candidates] have been trained so well,” Alison Keefe, a university-relations manager at Keurig told The Wall Street Journal. She says video games help recruiters “get past the veneer.”

4. Prepare to Meet Mya

The next recruiter you see in person might not be an actual person at all. San Francisco technology firm Mya Systems has created an artificial intelligence bot that’s smart enough to communicate with candidates over email, SMS and Facebook Messenger.

The company says it created the bot (also named Mya) to streamline the hiring process, and indeed it can. Mya gets a lot of questions out of the way that recruiters would cover in an initial interview, like how much experience a candidate has or what salary they expect.

“Applicants chat with Mya, and if she deems them a good fit she’ll schedule an in-person interview with the (human) hiring manager. She will also automatically send directions via Google Maps and even offer tips on what to wear,” explains CNN.

5. Txt Me Pls

Talent recruiting software company Yello believes hiring managers should fire up their smartphones and text the candidates they’re interested in.

A recent Yello survey discovered that 86% of respondents welcome text messages as part of the interview process. Three out of four say they’re down with doing a video interview rather than traipsing across town to meet a hiring manager in person.

Though texting may seem cold and unprofessional, it can add a personal touch that today’s job seekers may appreciate.

No matter what curveballs recruiters throw at you.

Lisa McGreevy is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. A hiring manager once told her he’d have to ask his cats if she was a good fit for the job. He was serious.