Imagine a world where you can go from an application to your first day on the new job orientation session, 100% online, with NO human contact, all done within less than 7 days. Does this sound like a favorable hiring process to you?
Well, big employers like Amazon are already leading the way with this no contract virtual hiring practice. A recent article titles I Got a Job at an Amazon Warehouse Without Talking to a Single Human caught my attention so I decided to dig a little deeper in order to understand this unconventional hiring practice and verify this writers experience.
The writer claims that he went through the entire Amazon hiring process without talking to a single human being. This means no resumes and no phone and/or in person interviews. Hard to believe, right? I went to Amazons career pages to verify this “no contact” hiring process allegation and this is what I discovered.
I went straight to Amazon’s career page and entered my location information to view the list of current job openings. I selected the Warehouse Team Member because it was the closest to my home but mainly for the purpose of this exercise.
So far, everything looked and felt like a standard online job application. The company asked for all my basic personal information, (citizenship status, work history, etc), then it directed me to a pre-employment online assessment. I found nothing to complex with the questions. It looks like the company wants to test an applicants reasoning, logic and workspace common sense in order get an idea of how one would perform in a warehouse environment. If you’re familiar with the stacking concept “heavy goes on the bottom and light goes on top” you’ll breeze right through the assessment.
I found the next step a little unusual for an online application. The company asks and allowed me to pick my preferred work shift. This is typically an interview phase discussion after the hiring manager has had time to carefully interrogate and qualify an applicant as a potential new hire. This step raised my curiosity so I picked my preferred work shift and ‘Presto’ my online application was complete!
About an hour later Amazon sent me what, at first glance, appeared to be an application receipt confirmation email. I opened it up and noticed a “final step before first day” advisory which required me to watch a short job preview video. After watching the video I was prompted to select a date and time for an in office appointment.
Office appointment! I though the hiring process was supposed to be 100% human contact free? Could this be the first break in the writers claim? I had some extra free time last week so I took the first appointment just two days later.
The Amazon fulfillment center is a short ride from my house, about 15 mins, so I went in gave the reception person my name, she looked me up and asked me for identification. The Ids are needed for the US Citizenship and Immigration Services I9 form which is also another standard step in the hiring process for any US company. I gave her my license and social security number, signed the form and was on my way.
The next day I got another email from Amazon with instructions for the online new hire orientation. The new hire orientation consist of a few more short day in the life and workplace safety videos followed by a couple of compliance and background check agreement documents which I signed remotely via e-sign. Painless process that I took me about 30 minutes to complete.
That night I finally got an email with the news I had been waiting for. “Your First Day!” The email included my first week work schedule and first day on the job arrival instructions.
It turns out that the 100% “no human contact” statement isn’t entirely true. My interaction with reception during the Office Visit phase of the hiring process involved some human contact although it was relatively brief and painless. The whole process, from application to my first day email, took about 9 days if I include the weekend but you can cut this time by a day or two if you’re able to schedule a sooner office visit appointment.
Overall, I give Amazon an A- rating for their online hiring process but an A+ for being one of the first companies offering the closest 100% human contact-free hiring process I’ve ever experienced.