Jobs platform Merlin helps employers conjure hourly workforce

There’s no magic potion that will make it easier for employers to fill hourly positions during a nationwide labor shortage, but a new application aims to make it a little less stressful by immediately connecting hiring managers with available talent.

Launched this week in New York, Merlin, a jobs platform exclusively for hourly workers, aims to help resolve frustrations on both sides of the job search by connecting hourly workers to employers in less than a day.

The program has been in beta testing for the past year in the Big Apple, and employers interested in hiring through the platform need only create a company profile and post a job opening along with any necessary requirements. Candidates are matched to opportunities that align with their qualifications and are located close to their home.

Job listings are available in a wide range of categories, including restaurants, hospitality, general labor and retail; both small and large businesses are using the platform. Starbucks, Shake Shack, FedEx and Hilton are among the employers using Merlin.

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Companies can utilize filters to search through thousands of potential candidates by location preference and previous experience. Employers and candidates can access Merlin’s chat feature so they can further discuss job details, schedule interviews and even hire on the spot.

The platform allows job candidates to forgo traditional resumes or cover letters in exchange for a user profile that highlights their experience, personality and skills, says Borja Moreno de los Rios, co-founder and co-CEO of Merlin.

“Merlin makes the hiring experience for employers a lot more efficient from start to finish,” he says. “To begin with, the applicants that employers review are only applicants who are qualified and who live at a reasonable distance from the job. This means that employers will not have to spend time reviewing candidates who will not work out at the end.”

De los Rios adds that hiring managers can search for very specific characteristics and can see active candidates that match the criteria.

“There’s no need to wait for the right candidate to apply. You can do a quick search and immediately start a conversation with dozens of potential employees,” he says.

The platform is designed to prioritize job candidates based on proximity as hourly employees tend to stay longer at jobs that are closer to their homes, de los Rios says.

“Merlin makes the employee recruitment process quicker, easier and more seamless for employers like myself,” says Victor Mouka, owner of Amir’s Falafel, a restaurant in New York. “The platform allows me to connect directly with the best candidates New York has to offer in a few simple steps. I rely heavily on its ability to uncover the prospects most relevant to me.”

While the service is only available in New York right now, de los Rios expects to expand to another metro city by the end of the year, most likely on the East Coast.

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