In January, a post for a candy taster job briefly went viral, creating a stampede of eager applicants that the staff at Ontario's Candy Funhouse were not prepared for.
Out of the hundreds of thousands of applicants, only ten were picked, CEO Jamal Hejazi tells Narcity.*
The chosen hires beat out celebrities, professional athletes, and company executives who also wanted the job, says Hejazi, including Chad Michael Murray himself.
An explosion of applications
Hejazi said that not long after the job was posted and shared by news outlets far and wide, over 200,000 people had applied. The hiring process took 2,500 hours to complete.
"One of the people gave their resume out on a candy box. It was like a nerds package with their resume on it," he says.
"[One] sent a big box that was Willy Wonka themed, and when you opened it up it had like a book of all the candies that they could imagine.”
Chad Michael Murray really wanted the job
"We even had celebrities reach out," he says, plus "professional athletes and things like that as well – just crazy," says Hejazi.
"One of the main ones was Chad Michael Murray. He was just like, 'Yeah, I’d love to be a candyologist.'"
Hejazi says he got in touch with the One Tree Hill actor via Instagram, who had expressed his interest in the job. Although Murray was not hired, he did get a consolation gift.
"We did send him a package and he loved it and reposted it, He was super excited. He’s a big candy lover."
Narcity has reached out to Chad Michael Murray's team for the details and will update the story when we hear back.
The ten lucky recruits
Hejazi says that eight part-time and two full-time candyologists were hired in the end, all working from home. He says there are specific reasons why they were chosen.
"It's not just a self-proclaimed candy expert. You've got to be a candy lover, but also creative, innovative, and open-minded," he says.
"A big portion of the job is actually writing descriptions about the candy as well. So, what's equally as important is coming up with the text, describing everything from the texture to the flavour to the level of sour."
The new hires were sent their first bags of candy this week, he says. However, "they're only required to eat their suggested daily intake of sugar because people can get sugared out quickly."
A sweet opportunity if you didn't get picked
"There were so many great applicants and people with experience" who applied, says Hejazi.
For that reason, he's creating something new to give applicants another shot — the "Candyologist-for-a-day" program.
"We'll send [candy] to them, they can review it, give their scoring on it — and we have a cool scoring system," says Hejazi. The program will launch sometime in the coming year.
*This article has been updated.