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Business

How Shopify uses Uber Eats to elevate interviews

June 15 / US

When the pandemic hit, millions of people were cut off from the physical aspects of work. Offices shuttered, transportation halted, and physical teams became flashing frames of heads and shoulders. Companies and employees had to adapt without being in the same space.  

Shopify’s Calvin McKee knows firsthand how the pandemic affected in-person connections. As a recruitment coordinator, McKee helps craft personal experiences for executive-level candidates. Before COVID, this meant flying them to Shopify’s Toronto headquarters, putting them up in hotels, and treating them to meals throughout their trip. The team also immersed potential hires in the city, often arranging sightseeing outings. 

Shopify used Uber for Business to facilitate the transportation, whether that was a ride from the airport to the office or from a candidate’s hotel to a restaurant. “Using Uber gave them that sense of freedom to explore the city that they would potentially live in,” McKee says. “It [also] made a big difference for us when we were recruiting to sell the city, the job, and company.”

Almost overnight, COVID-19 made an in-person experience impossible. But even with the pandemic’s constraints, Shopify wanted to continue elevating the traditional interview experience. They also wanted to take care of candidates on a human level. Interviewing can be taxing in normal times, and Shopify wanted to acknowledge that many might be facing hardships on top of a job search. The main challenge for McKee and his colleagues became how to do that when they only had video calls as their medium. 

Given the previous success of offering rides with Uber, Shopify decided to treat candidates from afar with the ability to order meals for delivery on Uber Eats. “For us to be able to flip the switch and start using Uber Eats to provide a similar but different experience was a huge selling point,” McKee recalls. 

By using Vouchers for Uber Eats, Shopify offered candidates the flexibility to order lunch during the interview day or use a voucher later for a meal of their choosing. “This was a chance for us to show candidates that we were still thinking about them amidst all the things that were going on in this new reality,” McKee says. “[It] was something we could do with the technology that we had around us [and] continue to create the candidate experience in a way that was meaningful.” 

Using vouchers helped Shopify surprise and delight candidates from afar, but it also helped solve a pre-pandemic pain point. One of the perks offered to remote interviewees before COVID-19 was meal reimbursement, but McKee describes the process as less than ideal. To be reimbursed, candidates had to provide their banking details, which many didn’t feel comfortable doing.

Processing the payouts also required considerable time internally. Vouchers eliminated this back and forth. “It’s as simple as clicking on a link and having the application on their phones,” says McKee. “That really changed the opportunity for us to provide this on a larger scale.” And because Uber for Business provided account management support and how-to content, McKee could devote more energy to engaging with interviewees rather than troubleshooting.  

Since Shopify has adopted an indefinite remote-working policy, McKee believes that Vouchers for Uber Eats will remain part of the interview experience. “We’re digital by default,” he says. “And no other option gives the same global reach.” 

Want to enhance your recruiting efforts? Learn more about Uber for Business here.