The Hiring Process at McDonald's: From Application to Interview to Orientation

Updated on June 15, 2020
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James has worked in the fast-food industry and is familiar with their hiring and business practices.

Learn about how to get hired at McDonald's!
Learn about how to get hired at McDonald's!

Overview of the Recruitment Process

  1. You can apply in-person or online at McDonald's website after you search for the store you want.
  2. The application is sent to McDonald's Human Resources if you apply to a corporate store, or the owner if the store is franchised.
  3. In a corporate store, the regional manager will call you and set up an interview. In a franchise store, the application is sent to the store manager. If the store manager feels the applicant is a fit then they will call you for an interview.
  4. The interview process will then begin. You will sit down with the hiring manager for the store to talk to them. They will look at a variety of things about you (which I will not write down as it is proprietary) before deciding to hire you or not.
  5. If you pass the final interview, you will be hired on at your agreed-upon rate. Then, you will be scheduled for your orientation.

1. Submitting Your Application

If you go to a McDonald's location to fill out an application, make sure you go at a time when the restaurant is not busy. Asking for an application during the peak lunch hour would show poor judgment on your part. This is especially true when the whole crew and managers are busy serving customers. Showing up during a slower period will also allow you to ask or answer any questions. Feel free to call ahead and ask if they are hiring.

The Application

The online application can take up to an hour to complete. It will ask you basic questions like your full name, address, work history, as well as your availability. Towards the end of the application, you will be asked to take a "personality" test. More on that later.

Your Availability Is Key

Drastically improve your chances of getting hired by being willing to work any days of the week and during any hours of the day. This will allow the store to fill any holes in their shifts and will make you more desirable to hire.

3. The Personality Questionnaire

The personality test usually takes 30 minutes to an hour to complete. You will be given a series of statements two at a time, and you have to choose what you feel is the correct statement. This allows McDonald's to gauge your personality and judgment. Some of the statements might not have anything to do with the other statements, and might even seem a little bizarre. Just take your time, and choose the statement that makes better sense or the statement that you believe to be the lesser of two evils.

4. The Interview

Getting called for an interview means that it is your time to shine. It should be easy as long as you prepare. Bring your identification and your social security card. You may not need these until orientation but it will show the interviewer that you think ahead and are ready.

During the interview make sure to smile and speak clearly. Most of the questions will be surrounding your past jobs and experiences. Some of the other five common questions as well as responses are listed below.

1. Where do you see yourself in five years, and why would you be good at this position?

This question is asked to assess your career goals and to judge if you will be a suitable fit for the company. If your future aspirations involve working in a restaurant in any capacity, then inform the manager that you would be gaining valuable experience in the industry.

If you plan on attending college, then this job would provide the perfect opportunity to earn some cash towards your education. Your degree could put you in a prime position to own manage your own restaurant or work in the corporate sector in the future.

2. Have you ever worked for in the fast-food business or in a fast-paced environment?

If you have no experience, you could say:

  • "I am a fast and willing learning who is looking forward to becoming familiar with both the functions of the lobby and the drive-thru."
  • "I'm looking forward to the challenges involved with this environment and the valuable skill set that will have the opportunity to develop during my time here."

3. What are your weaknesses?

One strategy to this question is to phrase your answer in a way to make your so-called weakness appear to be positive. You could say:

  • "I try to please everyone."
  • "I am too critical of myself."

Your interview may be hip to these sorts of answers, so do not be afraid to be honest about your response. This shows good self-awareness. Just be sure to never reveal any information that would deem you a risk to the company.

4. Why should I hire you?

This question could also be worded as "what are your strengths?" Be ready to provide examples from either a work or school setting if prompted.

  • "I work well when under pressure."
  • "I have great teamwork skills."
  • "I have excellent communication skills."

5. Why do you want to work here?

The obvious answer would be "to make money," but that isn't what the interviewer wants to hear. Be sure to put some thought into your answer.

  • "I grew up on McDonald's and want to prove myself to the #1 restaurant in the world."
  • "McDonald’s offers exceptional value for their customers and because of this, I would be proud to represent them."

6. Do you have any questions for us?

  • "What kind of training will I receive?"
  • "What are the characteristics of your top performers?"
  • "What do you like best about working at McDonald’s?"

Dress for Success

Stand out during your interview by dressing for the occasion. Some people will tell you that dressing up for a McDonald's interview is unnecessary, and that may be true sometimes. However, I would advise you to not take that chance. You do not need to wear a full suit, but aim for business casual. Dressing for success can only help your chances.

5. What to Expect at a McDonald's Orientation FAQ

Orientation day will provide you with a chance to network with other professionals working at McDonald’s and to learn more about the company. Your manager will also discuss what a typical day of work is like and what is to be expected of you. You may also get a tour of the facility on orientation day and a chance to make some free fries or hash browns, as well.

1. What do I need to bring to a McDonald's orientation?

Be sure to show up on the day of the orientation on time with your ID and social security card for the paperwork you will fill out.

2. What should I wear to orientation?

Dress comfortably, but formal. Sometimes you will be told ahead of time to wear black slacks and a white collared shirt. You will have to walk through the kitchen, so be sure to have on the appropriate nonslip footwear.

3. How long does the orientation last?

The time you spend in orientation will vary, but they usually last two to three hours.

4. Does an orientation mean I got the job?

It sure does!

5. Do I get paid for attending orientation?

Yes, the hours you log for orientation will be reflected in your first check.

6. What else do I need to know?

Be sure to act professionally and seize every chance to get a better insight into what it is like to work at McDonald’s. At the end, they will give you your work schedule and your uniform. Congratulations—you are on your way to starting your McDonald's journey!

Does McDonald's Hire Felons?

Although hiring processes vary between states and different McDonald's corporate branches and franchise stores, the company is known to be a felon-friendly employer.

  • Always disclose that you are a felon on your application or in an interview if you are asked.
  • Be honest about the circumstances surrounding your conviction.
  • Have open availability to make yourself more hirable and flexible.
  • Show up to the interview dressed for success.
  • Do not ask for handouts like free meals; sell yourself on what you can do for the company instead.

Tips on Getting Promoted at McDonald's

Many people who go to work for McDonald's quickly realize that the organization is a great fit for them. This realization may prompt you to start thinking about the future of the company and how you fit into that plan. Every store is different, but here are a few tips to start planting that seed for a promotion.

  • Probe your shift leader and manager about how they acquired their position.
  • Learn all the stations, and be open to being cross-trained for the grill in addition to order-taking and cash handling.
  • At the end of the day, showing initiative, being reliable, and maintaining a positive attitude will always work in your favor in the long run.
  • As time passes, ask your managers and trainers what you can do to improve your performance.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.


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    • profile image


      5 weeks ago

      I have a ON THE JOB EVALUATION and then THEY gave me a requirements and then they said wait for called for orientation. how long to be called for an orientation in mcdonald's

    • profile image

      Livetecs Software 

      7 weeks ago

      Content in the given write up provides all essentials regarding McDonalds form follow-up interview to orientation. Such a worthy content to be looked upon appreciating the accuracy of the content. Great, will visit again future to read more. To know more about us, visit our site

    • profile image

      Chasity Atkins 

      2 months ago

      What McDonald's

    • profile image


      5 months ago

      How do you do your hiring paperwork on

    • profile image

      Denise McBee-Pena 

      8 months ago

      Where do you go for orientation online for McDonald's

    • profile image


      8 months ago

      Hello sir my name is Rubaisha

    • profile image


      12 months ago

      I really want this jod bad

    • profile image

      Bianca R 

      12 months ago

      I had my interview last friday and I was told to come tuesday at five and the information about the orientation helped me be less nervous!

    • profile image

      Reanna Sheehy 

      12 months ago

      So I was hired, and my first day is today. Unfortunately, I do not know what shoes to buy. Do you have any recommendations?

    • profile image


      13 months ago


    • profile image


      14 months ago

      what days should u call

    • profile image

      Crystal taylor 

      14 months ago

      How can i see if my appication

    • profile image


      15 months ago

      Do you get your work permit after orientation or should you get it before?

    • profile image

      Indeed Help 

      19 months ago

      I have a ON THE JOB EVALUATION and then THEY gave me a requirements and then they said wait for called for orientation. how long to be called for an orientation in mcdonald's PHILIPPINES?

    • profile image


      20 months ago

      I had an interview and got hired on the spot my orientation is Thursday

    • profile image


      23 months ago

      I had a interview and was called in for orienration a week later

    • profile image

      Habib Rahman 

      2 years ago

      Thank you from your helpful information, the orientation is only on Rosville SA CA or other place.

    • profile image

      Frances wah 

      2 years ago

      Thank you for the great information

    • profile image


      2 years ago

      I was told I was going to be hired and that I only needed to show up for a second interview to meet the owner. I don't know if he said it to be nice or I really got hired. I guess I will have to find out tomorrow.

    • profile image

      Indeed help 

      2 years ago

      I went to the interview and the lady said at the end that I need to book an orientation how do I do that from the website? Plz help

    • profile image

      Cindy Dixon 

      2 years ago

      How long after your interview should you expect a call back

    • profile image

      Erin Farmer 

      2 years ago

      Hi. My fiance has done the paperwork but they have yet to call and schedule him for orientation. Its been 3 days since he turned in his application. Should he go talk to the manager and see what's taking so long?

    • profile image

      mcdonalds expert 

      2 years ago

      The shoes that you will be required to wear while working are black, but at the time of the interview wear anything that looks nice.

    • profile image

      Bad buddy 

      2 years ago

      What type of color shoes should i use to workat mcdonalds?


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