COVID-19 has boosted a number of essential and online businesses to the point where they need to hire hundreds of people. Now, some of these companies are getting creative with hiring during the pandemic.
"This is about actionality and giving everyone whatever ways that are necessary to them to be able to find work. Our teams have been trying to come up with creative ways to connect people and work," said Carl Schweihs, the president of PeopleManagement at TrueBlue, a national staffing company that helps businesses, big and small.
Schweihs says their team decided to try out a drive-thru hiring event. TrueBlue is running the events through its Staff Management |SMX business.
"We did one of these in April in Pennsylvania, and we saw a lot of success, so we were able to hire about as many people in one day as we had done in a week in the past," said Schweihs.
The company saw so much success that True Blue decided to offer the drive-thru service to other clients, as well.
"We saw a lot of people were interested in it. They weren’t used to necessarily video interviewing and there was a comfort factor in still being close to someone, still being able to ask questions, that just weren’t there on the video side," explained Schweihs.
How it works is applicants fill out all of their information ahead of time online. Then, True Blue schedules certain times for people to drive up and interview through their car window. Schweihs says they're able to interview more candidates in less time.
"Another thing is, we do interviews on all of our jobs and I think it also shows, especially in warehousing and distribution jobs attendance is a big issue, so by people being able to show up to an interview at a scheduled time, it also gives comfort in us and our customers that they're going to show up and be in attendance when they actually do take the job," said Schweihs.
Drive-thru hiring is gaining ground across the country. In California, the Tulare County Employment Connection is hosting its first drive-thru event to fill 40 electrical and solar installation positions.
"I'm a little bit old fashioned. I like the face-to-face, and I know a lot of people do. Just the safety matter of it right now during the pandemic, following safety guidelines, I think it's a very good idea to be able to drive through and make it quick, where there's not very much contact, but at the same time, you're having that face to face with employers," said Monica Andrade, a business resource specialist with Tulare County Employment Connection.
Andrade says employers will also have an opportunity to have a more in-depth interview with some candidates by having the candidate pull over and conduct a socially distant interview outside in a separate area. So far, True Blue has hosted more than 20 drive-thru hiring events, with more planned across the country.