The restaurant chain is already one of Sweden's largest employers. Until today, over 200,000 people have begun their careers within the walls of McDonald's! And, moving forward, the company wants to give even more young people the opportunity to kickstart their careers - 10,000 more to be exact. Hear Emelie Dahlberg, Head of People Development, on their Nordic initiative and McDonald's view on recruiting young workers.
Emelie Dahlberg has a background in retail and currently works as an HR consultant. Since January 2021, she has been Head of People Development at McDonald's Sweden. The organization houses both franchisees and privately owned restaurants, and Emelie is responsible for joint HR processes and systems. Besides recruitment, the team also runs educational matters, leadership development, work environment-related issues, and cultural work. During her years in the industry, Emelie has worked within the HR function at various large companies and experienced several more or less well-functioning recruitment systems. Therefore, she was pleasantly surprised when McDonald's new partner turned out to be an old acquaintance.
- They had just decided on a new system when I started at McDonald's, and in normal cases, I would probably have wanted to be involved and influence it because I have seen so many different ones. But I have previously been involved in implementing Jobylon's tools at Åhléns, and based on that experience, I thought it was a brilliant decision.
The young workers are McDonald's driving force
In 2021, Jobylon's tools were implemented in all McDonald's restaurants in Sweden, but the goal is a system change for the entire Nordic region. In Finland, the implementation has already been completed and in Norway and Denmark, the system has just gone live. McDonald's as a Nordic group is in the middle of an exciting period where they are investing heavily in their position as advocates for young workers, with the vision of reaching 10,000 recruits by 2024.
- The purpose of the initiative "Open the door for the youths of Sweden" is to highlight both how McDonald's can play an important part for young people when entering the labor market, as well as the fact that more people need to do more when youth unemployment increases. So far, 200,000 Swedes have started their careers with us and in 2021 alone, we have hired 2,500 new employees. We want to be the best employer within the Nordics - and with that comes high demands for recruitment support that can support that vision.
The background to how Jobylon and McDonald's collaboration came to life was thus the requirement for a tool that could deliver to all markets in the Nordic region and respond to McDonald's future recruitment needs.
- I feel that we do not need to compromise on the quality to have Jobylon in several markets. This is something you may have had to deal with before; that you may have to compromise on a multi-country system, and that you may not be able to use all the features everywhere. But with Jobylon, there are great advantages to using the same tool - after the implementation in Finland, we could more or less do a copy-paste when implementing Jobylon in Sweden, Norway, and Denmark.
- Even if the system is the same, it still allows different processes for different countries; the market can differ from country to country. However, wherever we recruit, it is the same type of employee we want to reach: the one with desire, passion, will, and drive.
A compliant employer
Despite the challenges for the restaurant industry during the pandemic, McDonald's Sweden has continued to put high pressure on applicants. Emelie believes that their biggest challenge when working towards achieving their ambitious goal for 2024 is to showcase our brand where our candidates spend their time. The majority of McDonald's employees are 16-25 years old, and the place they are looking for a job is, of course, online. But where?
- Our candidates are certainly not at Arbetsförmedlingen (The Swedish Public Employment Service) and in the future we will probably need to expand to make sure that we’re present in more forums online. We have also seen that there are fewer applicants for each position in places with fewer inhabitants, which will also be a focus going forward when we open new restaurants in new places and create new work opportunities.
She continues to describe the importance of a tool that is developed based on those challenges, as a system in this industry can easily become obsolete after just a few years. Her advice to other companies that are expanding is to choose a tool with great flexibility.
- From the very first time I worked with Jobylon, a lot has happened feature-wise, which is important in a progressive organization. A big plus is that Jobylon develops features and services that we are not always aware that we need but appreciate when they come. I think it is very important to choose a supplier who wants to develop with the business and to evaluate how they can help their customer achieve future expansion goals.
A system that remains a high standard
But despite the already mentioned advantages, in the end, there are other values than the functionality that are most important to Emelie.
- ATS systems can be fairly similar: the crucial thing is their quality of service. I have certainly had many strange requests as a customer, but I have never received a "no" from Jobylon. Going forward, it feels incredibly safe that they are so responsive and that it is a changing tool that can grow with us. Recruitment will always be a high priority and I am sure that Jobylon will continue to meet our high demands.
- It will be exciting to follow Norway and Denmark now that the tool has been launched in all our Nordic markets. We have previously conducted surveys in the organization on how the implementation went in Sweden and Finland, and both our entrepreneurs and franchisees have given us positive feedback. There is always general stress around introducing new systems, but in the collaboration with Jobylon, it has been nice to be able to reassure each other and know that it will go well.