Mobile Recruiting and Chipotle’s Plan to Hire 4,000 Workers In One Day

Mobile Recruiting and Chipotle’s Plan to Hire 4,000 Workers In One Day

Mike Roberts

chipotle recruiting strategyNot only has Chipotle Mexican Grill become a destination for a quick and quality meal, the fast-casual restaurant chain has also been rising as one of the top places to work in the industry. And after a string of improvements to its benefits for part-time employees and other newsworthy events, Chipotle recently announced plans to hire 4,000 new workers—in a single day next month.

The hiring plan announcement comes in the wake of a tightening restaurant labor market. As explained by Chipotle co-chief executive, Monty Moran, in a statement to the WSJ, “The economy has been thawing, more restaurants are opening, and there are fewer job applicants than there were several years ago.” This will be an effort to capture a large amount of quality candidate at once.

Expanding its 59,000-strong workforce by almost 7% in a 24-hour period may seem like a lofty goal. However, Chipotle has been as progressive in its recruiting strategy as it has been in its mission to make good food accessible to the masses. Among many other tools in its arsenal, it’s responsively designed mobile apply option will be vital to getting all of these new candidates into the hiring funnel.

Keeping Pace With Job Seekers’ Mobile Expectations

Back in 2014, Chipotle partnered with Jibe to deliver a next-generation mobile apply experience on top of its existing Applicant Tracking System (ATS). As the company noted in a press release on its investor relations site later that year: “Chipotle began using the mobile application app in early October. In just the first week of use, mobile applications accounted for 20 percent of incoming job applications, a total of roughly 5,000 applications.”

The notable shift toward mobile as the origin of applications submitted to Chipotle compares to the experiences seen by other clients that have deployed Jibe’s Candidate Experience platform. It also aligns with broader trends in the way people use their mobile devices and access the internet.

Today’s job seekers have grown to expect exceptional experiences when interacting with digital media and technology, and those expectations have extended into the job search process. What’s interesting is that many companies—unlike Chipotle—don’t offer the option to apply on mobile, mainly because their current ATS doesn’t allow them to do so.

As a result, often when job seekers hit “Apply” on their mobile devices, they’re asked to email themselves the application and complete it on a desktop. Or worse, they find themselves at a dead-end—with an error message because the mobile apply process is non-existent. This doesn’t align with consumer-quality technology experiences everyday people have come to expect in 2015.

As more people take their job search mobile, and a subset of job seekers continues to emerge that accesses the internet only through a mobile device, the costs of continuing on an unoptimized, outdated path are becoming more apparent by the day. According to one study by LinkedIn, only 30% of survey respondents said their job listings are optimized for mobile.

At the same time, though, for companies that go from not offering the ability to apply via mobile to a next-generation mobile experience, the results can be dramatic.

Candidate Experience As Part of Your Employer Brand

Being progressive is part of Chipotle’s corporate brand. Not long ago, fast food drive-thrus were brimming with people waiting in line to get mass-produced meat byproducts and potatoes. But the everyday American seems to have recently developed a taste for sustainably sourced healthy food. Many would agree that Chipotle has played a role in driving these changes in consumer behavior and preference.

What’s interesting about the company is its dedication to maintaining that level of progressiveness in its employer brand. With such a focus on making Chipotle a company people want to work for, it only makes sense for its talent acquisition team to care about the candidate experience on its career site. Continuing with an outdated mobile apply option would have been a disservice to its other employer branding efforts.

Candidate experience and the overall employer brand, of course, go well beyond the way your career site looks and feels and your apply process. The Talent Board recently found that 52.3% of candidates had a prior relationship with a company before starting the recruiting process, so clearly the candidate relationship often begins much earlier—for instance, while they’re eating at Chipotle.

But having a recruiting team that can deliver results, like meeting Chipotle’s goal to hire as many as 4,000 people in a day, means continually working to optimize the variables that impact all of these areas. It means staying ahead of the competition and setting the standards for what they should be working toward.

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