03 November 2010

Could companies charge job applicants?

“If you click the ‘apply to this position’ button, your credit card will be charged $50,00”.

I never saw this, but I was wondering if companies that have an attractive brand could in fact charge job applicants as a way to reducing irrelevant applications, reducing the number for brands that get so many applications it becomes too resource demanding to sort all applications and, of course, help recruitment become a revenue stream, not only a cost center.

I am not talking about Average John Co., but to well known brands, like Google, Microsoft, Accenture, McKinsey and so on. I understand that looks too crazy, but also saying that the Earth was round was completely insane.

Would that make any sense to a company to do? Would it affect the employer brand? Could it have any positive effect?


  1. Wouldn't that lead to a drop in the number of good applicants as well? Good ones may not be in a position to pay that much. But then that is a debatable topic as well.

  2. I sincerely don't know. Since companies usually want to increase the number of applicants, I think this is crazy, but I am wondering if it could have any positive impact in terms of quality.

    I guess only testing/researching can give us a good answer. :)

  3. I actually saw this, but not for a big brand company, but for a recruitment agency. they had some jobs that were fairly interesting(so I guess many people would apply) so they were charging 19 Euros for the "first interview".So if you wanted an interview, you had to pay the fee. And only after that your applicationwould be forwarded to the company so that they can call you up. I found it strange, as the positions were not really top management,but some staff on cruise ships (really well paid and good perks included).

  4. Interesting, so it does exist.

    I wonder about their results. Do you remember the name of the company?

  5. I think it sounds like an interesting idea! I believe it could have the wanted effect that only the really engaged, high quality people apply. WOuld be really interesting to test what the effect would be. But then again, how much effort does or should a recruiter actually spend on bad applicants? The CV reveals A LOT about what you need to know about a person only at the first glance. I guess a good recruiter doesn't spend time on applicants not even able to put up a decent CV?

  6. Hey, MJ

    But if you receive 1.000 applications, even if you use 1 minute per CV (downloading, opening, getting used to the random format, checking what you need...), that's 16 hours (or 2 full work days) - not counting any admin work for the ones you need to follow up for interview.

  7. True, true. I guess for companies that receive a number application in that scale, the idea would really be interesting :)


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