3D Printed Meatballs Are Served at IKEA’s Job Interview

There can be no doubt that meatballs at IKEA are as iconic as the world’s largest furniture retailer on its own. The Swedish home furnishing company has just launched its recruitment campaign “Taste the Future“ and thereby it is scouting data scientists, software developers and engineers by inviting them over to have 3D printed meatballs. The question on everybody’s lips is why IKEA started to 3D print the meatballs. What is the connection between plant-based meat in the shape of a ball and a job interview?

The Sustainable Profile of The Renowned Swedish Furniture Company

Promoting the Three Roads Forward strategy which stands for affordable, sustainable and accessible, the Swedish furniture retailer is widely known for its sustainable thinking and business model. Moreover, IKEA has set its goals not only to become circular and climate positive by 2030 but also to reduce meat by offering 50% of plant-based meals in its restaurants by 2025

The Digital And Technological Turn: IKEA Is on The Hunt for Tech Talents

Along with other businesses, the world’s largest furniture company has been undergoing the biggest digital transformation. By developing the IKEA app or incorporating AR/VR visualization on its website, the Swedish furniture retailer embarks on the technological journey by investing in research as well as automation. According to Karen Rivoire, Global Employer Brand Leader at the Swedish enterprise, IKEA is seeking:

“down-to-earth data scientists, future architects, cyber guardians, unboxed engineers and common sense-makers. People who want to co-create a better everyday life at home for the many with thin wallets.”

In other words, the furniture retailer wishes for a change of image so that people would start to associate IKEA with technology, that is why the company came up with a provoking set-up at a job interview: a meatball made of the 3D printer. Ms. Rivoire explains further:

“The 3D printed meatballs are a metaphor for people’s imagination. We wanted to surprise people with an iconic IKEA product like the meatball without meat and add a tech twist.“

Values and Visions Behind The Experimental Recruitment Campaign

To attract the unique to-be recruitees as well as to harness their imagination, the vegan 3D printed meatballs were made solely for recruitment purposes and therefore, they will not be on the menu in the restaurants. 150 positions are opened for candidates across Europe who share the same brand values and will contribute to exploring sustainable technologies creatively with the human-centric approach. Ms. Rivoire describes the oncoming journey:

“[W]e are fascinated by the dreams and dilemmas of people (co-workers, customers and citizens) and how they live – that is the core of our business. We will continue that commitment and technology will enable us to get an even deeper understanding of people’s dreams and dilemmas.“

What is your take on IKEA as a future technological home furnishing company? Would you like to test out the vegan 3D printed meatballs? Share your thoughts below in the comment section.

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