Leadership

Why one CEO doesn't look at resumes and asks for a 'love letter' instead

Gavin Zuchlinski, founder and CEO of Acuity Scheduling
Courtesy of Gavin Zuchlinski
Gavin Zuchlinski, founder and CEO of Acuity Scheduling

Acuity Scheduling is not your typical company. Full-time employees log just six hours a day, and all of them work remotely.

The online scheduling company's hiring process is unique, too. For starters, the job posting is written as a personal ad, and "in some really quirky language," CEO Gavin Zuchlinski tells CNBC.

"We phrase the whole application process like dating, because, in a way, it is. You meet each other a couple of times and then, maybe a little bit quicker than you anticipated, you're committing to staying with the company for X number of years."

An Acuity job posting for a "Customer Happiness Specialist" reads: "While I don't usually do this sort of thing, I figured it was time to 'put myself out there' and see if, just maybe, the right person might be reading on the other side of the screen."

At the bottom of the job posting, candidates are asked to submit a "love letter," in which they respond to a real email Acuity received from a customer about how much they enjoy the scheduling service.

"Instead of asking for a resume, we actually ask for a love letter," Zuchlinski explains. "What they say in the love letter, and how they phrase it and show off their personality, is the single most important way that we screen for fit within the company.

"As we're going through 3,000 or so applicants, it's a lot of reading, but it's a whole lot more fun than reading through canned cover letters and resumes that have been polished with positions."

While he does look over resumes "much later on in the interview process," above all Zuchlinski is hiring for personality, he tells CNBC. After all, "in a company, the reason that you come to work every day, and the reason that you stay around, is because of your co-workers."