How Amazon Prime Inadvertently Changed the Way Your Company Hires

Author Mike Marschke Date 21 Dec 2018

In 2005, Amazon announced the creation and launch of their membership service Amazon Prime. This offered free two-day shipping within the US on all eligible purchases for a flat annual fee of $79 and discounted one-day shipping rates. Fast-forward to today, and we see additional innovations like Prime Day, the Amazon credit card, and Prime Now.

It’s no secret that Amazon Prime members are a loyal group. They spend about $1,400 a year versus $600 for non-Prime members. And with an estimated 95 million Amazon Prime members (as of June 2018), it becomes clear why people’s behaviors and expectations have fundamentally changed.

Consumer Expectations Have Spread into Candidate Expectations

The idea is simple: People expect that if they are going to spend their hard-earned money on a product or service, the process should be made easy, convenient and personal. In return, that company is rewarded with a shopper who is more likely to become a repeat customer and recommend the company to others.

This is precisely what has happened in people looking for work. For hourly workers in particular, they have the option of applying to hundreds of companies. While there is no firm metric, it is believed that job seekers fill out 10-15 applications a week or 2-3 per day. For hourly workers, this number is most likely higher. The reason? They want to start working as soon as possible and recognize that it’s a numbers game. They apply to as many job openings as possible for companies that “look most intriguing” and whichever hiring manager gets back to them first has a better chance of winning them over.

The “Amazon Prime” Experience to Hiring

Today’s workers are looking for companies that can hire quickly and make the application process easy and convenient for them. As a result, the companies that can keep up with their growing demand are able to staff faster than their competitors. These are the same companies using the “Amazon Prime” experience. Not only does it resonate for job seekers, it turns the recruiting and hiring process into a seamless and efficient machine.

Three ways retailers are embracing the “Amazon Prime” experience for hiring:

  1. Source candidates quickly and efficiently. With the right technology, companies no longer need to sort through resumes. Instead, this is done automatically by setting parameters for each job opening. Candidates who meet the required criteria will automatically move through the next round of the interview process. Not only does this save time, but it quickly connects hiring manager to qualified candidates.
  2. Communicate with candidates in real-time, anytime. Today’s unemployment rate is at a historic low, which means there is more competition among retailers to hire qualified candidates. It also means candidates are moving through the interview process faster. By automating the hiring process, communications are sent in real time—say, 15 minutes after a candidate applies and passes the criteria you’ve set for the position. By sending communications in real time, and then sending automated communications before and after interviews, or as they move through the hiring process, hiring managers are engaging these candidates, showing interest in them joining the company, and getting them to accept positions at a faster pace. This is now done without any additional work from other resources like a third party or recruiting agency.
  3. Predict the best candidates with artificial intelligence. AI is a buzzword for sales and marketing professionals, but it also has significant benefits for hiring. Imagine if you could predict who your best candidates are, and who will stay with you the longest? In a high-turnover industry where it costs $3,328 on average to replace an employee, having this data at your fingertips can save your business thousands of dollars each year.

If You’re Not Amazon, That’s Okay

It goes without saying that many—if not all—retailers look at Amazon as an innovator and a disruptor. They are a major competitor who has set the bar unbelievably high for how companies should capture data and engage with customers both online and now even in-store. While this is an inspiring goal to become, it can also seem like a daunting task. The good thing is that it doesn’t have to be.

We’re seeing a shift in the number of retailers who are investing heavily in digital commerce technologies in order to take back their customers from Amazon, and gain new ones in the process.

The irony, however, is that while retailers are embracing new technologies to engage customers and drive sales, their internal business operations, particularly when it comes to hiring, have not changed at all.

By incorporating these basic principles, companies are hiring faster than ever before.

The Business Case for Adopting New Hiring Technology
As we look to 2019, the companies who are willing to embrace new digital technologies will see great success. But those who view hiring technology as equally as important will see a true competitive advantage—and an increase to their bottom line. For more information on how your business can integrate hiring automation technology into your business, contact us today.


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About the Author

Director, Strategic Programs

Mike Marschke

Mike Marschke is Fountain's Director of Product who has a passion for innovation and optimizing talent acquisition strategies, enhancing candidate experiences, and driving organizational growth.