Text to Apply – The Complete Guide!

How Mobile-First Candidates Apply!

Text to apply makes it easy for candidates to apply by texting a message to a Toll-Free number which then responds with a customized preset of questions that captures the candidate’s contact information, pre-screens them, and even schedules the qualified candidates for an interview, based on your needs.

When a job seeker completes the brief text to apply conversation, the recruiting team is notified that a new candidate entered the hiring process. Then, the recruiting team members can then start text messaging with the candidate.

Chic-fil-A Apply by Text
Text to Apply Sign with QR Code

Now Hiring Signs with Text to Apply & QR Codes!

Text to Apply is easy to use!

With Text to Apply signs and QR Codes for text mssaging, candidates can quickly apply via text messaging.
Each client gets a unique QR Code that opens the candidates’ messaging app and sends a message to the customer’s unique Text to Apply number or Shortcode.

Text to Apply then responds back to the candidate, automatically, capturing the candidate’s name, email, and pre-screening responses, and can even schedule qualified candidates on the recruiting calendar.

What are the benefits of Text Apply?

Text to Apply is a feature of text recruiting software because text messaging has a 95%+ open rate. Candidates are already using SMS as their primary communication platform, and companies can leverage recruiting chatbots to engage and pre-screen candidates quickly.

Additionally, because the conversations happen quickly, with quick responses and automation, it creates a better candidate experience. Our clients are seeing increase in qualified candidate engagements by 900%, while increasing candidate application rates by 562%.

How does Text to Apply work? 

Text to apply works by providing a job seeker with a phone number that accepts a specific text to apply keyword, which then triggers the text-to-apply software to respond with preset text messages.

There are multiple types of responses, from an automated response with a welcome message and link to a career site to a recruiting chatbot that engages the candidate in an automated conversation that captures the candidate’s contact information and pre-screening questions. More advanced solutions can integrate into a company’s applicant tracking system (ATS), schedule interviews, and submit the candidate for a specific role.

The use of Apply by Text is growing significantly in the US for front-line hourly workforce because it’s fast and efficient application process, the candidate experience is great, it moves the candidate through the process faster, and it reduces a lot of manual time spent by recruiters, doing manual followup calls and emails.

3 types of Text to Apply software

There are three types of text to apply software solutions and GoHire supports them all.
So, whether you’re a smaller business hiring a handful of employees a month or a company hiring 100,000+ employees, we’ve got a solution for you.

1. Conversational AI with Recruiting Automation

Leveraging AI and advanced recruiting chatbots, text to apply can be used to automate higher-volume hiring workflows, from that include integrated interview scheduling and integration into a client’s applicant tracking system (ATS) as well as matching candidates to specific jobs, while also answering candidates frequently asked questions.

Conversational AI provides a more customizable candidate experience and integrated workflow, which is needed by high-volume recruiting environments where scale and automation can provide a significant return on investment.

These systems are generally highly customized to the client and the candidate workflows and can be deeply integrated into multiple recruiting systems, including ATS systems, calendars, HRIS and other systems of record.

2. Apply by Text with Candidate Capture and Pre-screening Conversation

This is a HUGE game changer in Mobile Recruiting, and highly effective for Candidate Acquisition. In this case, a candidate texts the word “careers” to your number, or scans a QR Code, and sends a message.



The system then responds with a company-branded message that Welcomes and Engages the candidate in a conversation, asking the candidate for their contact information and some basic pre-screening questions, to see if they fit for the role.

When the candidate completes the questions, the candidate’s contact information is submitted to the hiring team or hiring managers via email and depending on the configuration could include scheduling of pre-screening calls with candidates.

There are multiple variations of Conversational Apply by Text, but even the simplest of solutions can capture 90% of the candidates.

3. Auto-Response Text to Apply Software

This is the simplest form of text to apply. It isn’t as effective at capturing and engaing candidate as the other solutions above, but it is cost-effective.

With an auto-response solution, when a candidate sends a text message the text to apply software will respond with a simple message, like the below:

“Thank you for your interest in Acme Company careers. To apply, visit https://acme”

An auto-response text to apply system makes it easy to send someone to a web page, but you don’t capture the candidate contact information, and run the chance that the candidate won’t complete an application, either.

Multiple studies over many years, including the Appcast 2023 Recruitment Marketing Benchmark Report   show that only 5% of mobile candidates complete an application, so having a candidate text you, and then send them to a website, without capturing their contact information isn’t as effective as capturing the candidates contact info.

A Now Hiring sign that points to your website or uses text to hire loses 95% of your candidates. As a result, this isn’t a very effective solution, but it does have specific use cases, like job fair signage, etc.

What’s a typical text to hire conversation?

  • Candidate Contact & Profile Capture
  • Pre-screening for Qualification, Availability and Interest
  • Automated Interview Scheduling

Gets Results:

  • 500% Increase in Candidates
  • 90% of Candidates Complete the Apply
  • Increase your Speed to Hire

Will Text Apply work for you? 

Apply by Text works great for retail, hospitality, high-volume, hourly/part-time, mass-hire, onsite, job fairs, and local recruiting.

It’s Easy to get started!

  • Once you create an account, GoHire creates a customized apply by text script for you, with a Toll-Free phone number, or a shortcode, depending on the number of locations you have.
  • A printable QR Code and Now Hiring sign is provided once your account is setup, so you can use a the sample Now Hiring sign, or share the QR Code with your marketing team to creat customized in-store signs and list your Apply by Text number in your job ads.
  • Candidates can scan your QR Code which sends a message to your custom text to apply implementation.
  • Once a candidate completes the conversation, your recruiting chatbot will send you the candidate’s information via email, and send you a notification in the application.
  • During setup, each licensed user is given their own text recruiting software license, that includes an individual Toll-Free number to text candidates 1 -1.
  • For more advanced solutions, we can include integrated automated interview scheduling, multiple languages, multiple job locations, integrate to your applicant tracking system (ATS), and create more complex job applications.
Robin Schooling
With high-volume hiring we needed tech to interact with candidates at the top of the funnel by answering FAQs and gathering candidate contact information. Our GoHire text messaging chatbot does this while also providing a nice “human-centric” touchpoint for candidates.
Robin Schooling - VP of HR, Hollywood Casino, Baton Rogue


Dunkin Donuts Jobs Text Apply
Wingstop Jobs Text Apply

Who’s Talking About GoHire


AT&T SMT Text Messaging
metroPCS SMS Text Messaging
Sprint SMS Text Messaging
USCellular SMS Text Messaging
TMobile SMS Text Messaging
Verizon SMS Text Messaging
Boost Mobile Text Messaging