Social media was created as tool for people and businesses to connect with others all over the world. Great idea, in theory. What has happened is that social media has been overrun by fake news bots, immature and petty individuals, social justice warriors, people who are offended by everything and the bottom-feeding 2% of people who sit on their couches all day. One could argue that social media has done as much harm to society as good. McDonald's new Snaplications feature on Snapchat sounds good, in theory, but could hinder society as other platforms have.
Snaplications allows Snapchat users to apply for customer service positions at the fast food giant. People create 10-second videos using a filter that dresses them in a McDonald’s uniform. McDonald’s reviews the videos and notifies the user if they have been chosen to move on to the second stage of the hiring process. As of press time, this is only available in Australia.
If this trial run “down under” is successful, we will see it in the States in no time. Every major retailer would be racing to mimic this trend, as long as Snapchat remains a viable social media option. 65% of Australian McDonald’s employees are under the age of 18 and this taps right into that demographic. McDonald’s would get great press for continuing the trend of stimulating job growth while simultaneously interacting with its users. All of this creates a younger fan base with the upside of them being lifelong customers.
A big issue comes on the macro level. As other companies try to copy Snaplications, critics and activists will suggest that this would be an underhanded way to profile applicants. Whether it’s by race, gender, sexuality, age or looks, companies could profile applicants on the spot. Stores like Home Depot and Abercrombie & Fitch, both accused of racism in the past, would face this sort of backlash if they were to implement a social media hiring tool. The list of stores accused of racism would probably triple in today’s fickle social climate.
McDonald’s Snaplications could be trend-setting, good or bad.
Photo from McDonald's Australia