Check out our tips on how to get a foot in the door at the coveted company.
Spotify has established itself as one of the biggest names in the music industry. With 365 million monthly active users across the globe, it’s allowed artists to connect with people all over the world.
Over recent years it has expanded to include a range of podcasts and videos, and this year it’s expected to rake in more than $10 billion in revenue.
As it has grown from its humble beginnings, so too has demand for a role at the company — according to Spotify’s Global Head of Talent Acquisition Jon Singel the company receives around 60,000 applications per month.
Currently Spotify has 6,554 employees with an average age of 34. If you’re hoping to be one of them, read on for our tips into the music streaming giant’s hiring process.
Knowing Spotify’s history and culture is integral to getting noticed and taken seriously by the hiring team.
The company was founded in Sweden in 2006 by Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon to combat piracy in the music industry. Elk told The Telegraph he realized it was impossible to legislate away from piracy, so “the only way to solve the problem was to create a service that was better than piracy and at the same time compensates the music industry."
It states its mission is to “unlock the potential of human creativity by giving a million creators the opportunity to live off their art and billions of fans the opportunity to enjoy and be inspired by it.” Since its humble beginnings, the company has become one of the largest music streaming services in the world, up against the likes of Apple.
Those wanting to get noticed by Spotify need to show their character aligns with the company’s core values to become part of what the company calls its ‘band.’ It is critical resumes and cover letters show that you are innovative and move fast and take big risks; are sincere and don’t waste time on internal politics; are passionate and revel in what the company does; are collaborative; and are playful, with the company saying staff don’t take themselves too seriously.
When you can, show examples of those traits in previous work, hobbies and definitely in music appreciation.
Spotify says on its hiring blog that it expects applicants to care, “about your work, about Spotify, about the success of the entire band,” and it expects those on its team to grow.
“Growth is our mantra, both for Spotify and for our people. The two go hand in hand. You should be self-driven, ready to take control of your own development and reach your full potential.”
Spotify attracts around 350,000 resumes a year, according to the HR blog, but submitting through traditional channels isn’t the only way to score a spot at the company.
Some applicants have found a more informal approach works just as well, with reports of some hopefuls tweeting their cover letter or resumes and scoring interviews.
Either way, Singel says no matter how it gets to the right place, you’ll need a standout resume that highlights all your best assets as a potential employee. He encourages applicants to include a summary of their professional career at the beginning of their resume.
Spotify is looking for employees that are passionate and hardworking and it wants employees to bring a new, fresh way of thinking to the company — so let the company know about your impactful and innovative ideas.
If you’re a recent graduate, don’t let a lack of experience hold you back from applying. Spotify’s internship programs are known for being a haven of learning and working with teams to make a change in the music world. Not only this, but it’s common for interns to be hired after showcasing their skills during their internship program.
Singel recommends all applicants gearing up for the company’s interview process be very familiar with The Band Manifesto, which explains the mission, beliefs, culture, values and everything else; its Diversity & Belonging page; and the How We Hire guide.
He says fundamental to the hiring process is determining if a person is a good cultural add. As you read through the materials, compare who Spotify is with your own personality, values and life aspirations and make a list of where and how you feel connected and prioritize the areas that bring you the most joy.
Be able to answer the following questions, what skills do I have that add value? Based on my interests and expertise, what functional areas might be a potential match? Where do I want to be and what role do I qualify for today that increases the probability to achieve this? What excites me and what challenges me? Where in the world do I want to live my life?
Once you’ve nailed down the big picture stuff, practice. Review your resume ahead of interviews, rehearse telling your story and prepare questions to ask those interviewing you.
“Come prepared to provide concrete examples that best articulate your skills and prepare questions that demonstrate you have researched what role you are interviewing for,” Singel says. “Be authentic and connect your examples to how you personally see yourself in our mission, culture and core values.”
Spotify’s hiring process can be broken down into three steps. The introductory phone call, a portfolio review done via video call and a day of on-site interviews.
During this phone call, you’ll be invited to share with them what you hope to gain from a role with Spotify. They’ll want to hear briefly about your skill set, what you enjoy working on, and the areas in which you wish to grow. The Spotify band manifesto will come up multiple times during this conversation, so make sure you’ve read it. They’ll be checking to see if you match up with their company’s values and culture.
Next, you’ll meet with the Talent Acquisition rep and a member of the team you’re applying for. They’ll pick a few of your projects and have you walk them through your thought process from beginning to end. To shine in this area, don’t hold back details about how you reached your final decision. They want to know how you approach your work and the different approaches you take.
You’ll meet with tech and design partners that you would be collaborating with if hired, and walk them through your portfolio once again. Be prepared to answer questions and think on your feet. You’ll also be asked to complete a real-time design exercise to solve a Spotify design challenge.
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