Want To Get A Job At Apple? Here's How

Do you want to wear your favorite jeans, swing from a trapeze in a giant transparent cube, and predict the future? Working at Apple may not be exactly like that, but it's probably the closest you can get.

Apple is hiring for a whole host of positions, from engineers at its corporate headquarters to customer service reps and Geniuses at its 259 retail stores across the country. And while Apple's sales folks can push hundreds of thousands of dollars of merchandise a year and take home a dust fragment of that themselves, Apple historically has paid slightly more than your average retailer ($11.82 an hour was the average, according to Glassdoor, compared to $8.87 an hour at a Walmart). But after a tough New York Times article, Apple this summer announced it was lifting wages by as much as 30 percent and giving employees discounts on iPads and Macs.

On the other end of the spectrum, Apple senior software engineers have earned a pretty $126,454 a year on average -- slightly less, however, than similar positions at Facebook ($132,503) and Google ($141,705).

An Apple spokeswoman refused to respond to our questions, but luckily a bunch of former Apple employees have offered up their insights on getting the job. The exact number and nature of the interviews vary, they say, but there's one thing that Apple looks for in all its new hires: being obsessed with Apple. Apple is a cultish brand, and it wants its representatives to be swimming in the Kool Aid.

One person posting on Glassdoor.com applied to be a specialist at Apple in Providence Rhode Island, and the manager asked if he or she owned any Apple products. "Like an idiot I said 'no,'" the poster writes. The manager then replied matter-of-factly, "I don't know if you can work here if you don't own any Apple products." This particular applicant did not receive an offer.

"Humanize it a little bit," advises Tom McGraw, 26, who worked as an Apple specialist in Virginia for two years. McGraw suggests mentioning specific projects or experiences you've had involving the Apple logo, such as saying, "I used iMovie to make this really cool video for my friend's birthday."

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Even applicants for customer service positions may be asked gentle technical questions, like "What is the most challenging technical problem you've been faced with and how did you overcome it?" or "Describe a time you explained something technical to an older person."

But Apple isn't looking to fill its ranks with sun-starved code-monkeys, at least when it comes to retail positions. They want extroverts. They want charisma.

Many individuals who apply online get invited to an Apple "job fair," which various stores host on a regular basis. These 20 to 30 hopefuls are often greeted by some hip and perky track of the moment (when Cult of Mac blogger Buster Heine attended one, MGMT was the artist of choice), as well as a somewhat disorienting standing ovation.

"It's like running a camp workshop," said McGraw, who helped run job fairs at his store. The applicants are given tasks to test how comfortable they are speaking in front of people and interacting with strangers. It could be that applicants are required to stand up and introduce the person next to them, or they may be broken into teams and asked to prepare a presentation.

"It's almost like shopping for a puppy," McGraw said. "What puppy is the most playful and fun?"

More: Is This Job Worth Applying To? 7 Ways To Tell


No matter what position you're vying for, Apple still places a lot of faith in the referral, according to Electricpig, the gadget news site. So if you know someone at the company who can vouch for your brilliance, call in that favor. Even if you don't technically know anyone who works at Apple, try wooing your LinkedIn contacts.

There are plenty of other tales of unlikely entries into the Apple fold, like recruits tapping people who contribute sweet apps to the App store or who answer questions in Apple support forums. And once you accept that offer, you'll join the loved-up work culture Apple has carefully cultivated through its hiring practices. "In terms of the work environment, it's probably the best job I've ever had," said McGraw.

The 25 percent employee discount doesn't hurt either. "And if you really are an Apple fanboy and really like the company.... it's cool to be around when new products launch," says McGraw. "You're the first person to play with it, and to be around the whole thing."

Looking for a job at Apple?




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julian_deshields

you are just hating

April 19 2013 at 1:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
makehay751

Why would any American want to get a job with Apple when it seems to have more interest in eliminating Child Labor in China than to help shore up the economy in its home country of America (whom has allowed Apple to grow and prosper). Maybe you and all businesses having divisions in China should move to China in entirety. That way you can experience real suppression of independant operations with all profits going to China. Deaf ears will fall on any attempts to improve anything to do with child human rights in China. Put your time and money where it will make the most difference...in more American jobs....if you haven\'t noticed(asmany users of manufactured iitems have) American manufacturers are still the most creative,
cost effective, and quality product producers in the world. I happen to know an American Director of Engineering in manufacturing whose moto is: \"there isn\'t a manufacturing cost or quality of product (in China) that we can\'t beat.\" The same American innovative spirit still exists! There is much more to be gained in investing in American manufacturing and much more to loose staying in China ie. patents, design secrets, quality of product, expense of shipment, delays in production, delays in shippment, no quality control standards, and once China figures it out on its own and can shelp by.. they will take over your company or kick you out and continue making inferior parts we must continuely fix as consumers in America. The Clincher? We will do without any of you! Other businesses will spring up and replace the old. The enginutiy of the America that once made the economy strong will overtake China production! It\'s still here... the good \'ol American know how... I see it every day... why can\'t you?

January 25 2013 at 3:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
herterb

Notice how the age and race of the Apple employees in the photo (very young and white) does not match the age and race of the customers (older and mixed)? Apple's own job application for some positions asks if you would enjoy helping older persons learn computers, as if they always need special help. How condescending to "older" people. I'm older and I know ten times more than the average young Apple Store employee. It's gotten harder and harder to find someone at an Apple Store that actually can answer any technical questions unless you go to the Genius Bar which requires an appointment, and I'm talking about the Downtown San Francisco store.

September 20 2012 at 6:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
amorawej

Bring some dough, brown sugar, cinnamon and lots of butter ;-)

August 24 2012 at 4:00 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
ollie0717

I know how to get hired at Apple. Go back in time to 1968 and call up Paul McCartney and ask him for a job at Apple.

August 24 2012 at 3:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Jason Sinelli

woooo 12 an hour

August 19 2012 at 11:01 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
JoanneVLavender

How to get fired at Apple? Simple. Sit at your desk and open up a Samsung, Dell, or any other non-Apple product.

August 19 2012 at 10:32 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to JoanneVLavender's comment
corgi44

When I was a waitress, my boss got a letter from Coke saying they were going to sue my boss if she didn't insist that the waitresses told every customer who ordered a Coke that we didn't have Coke...We were told
we HAD to say we sold only Pepsi products. This turned me OFF from Coke products. I shall INDEED
stick to the Pepsi products ONLY because of the attitude Coke had. I'm sure it goes BOTH WAYS...
But, I didn't appreciate the threat!

August 19 2012 at 11:48 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Marquise

Another quick way to get fired is to also plug your own personal iPhone or iPad into the work computer, that's a big no no. Then again ive seen apple fire people for much less.

August 24 2012 at 12:01 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Gcymru

Unfortunately, however, Jobs off-shored the manufacture of Apple products to China, and working conditions at the Chinese manufacturing facilities are horrendous.

That the horror behind the brand.

August 19 2012 at 10:01 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Gcymru's comment
Murray

As it is behind practically everything else we buy today!

August 20 2012 at 3:52 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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