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Attracting and Engaging Candidates Using Gamification

Collecting resumes and work samples, checking references, administering assessments, and calling for interviews is the basic hiring model. While reference checks are notorious for selection bias, resumes provide limited information.

Research suggests that pre-employment assessments and cognitive tests are the most predictive of job success. The internet changed how people apply for jobs. Shorter attention spans are making applicants choosier. Even hiring executives are prioritizing candidate experience.

The fact that 77% of the job seekers are using mobile job search apps indicates how integral mobile has become to the hiring process. 45% of the job seekers use their mobile devices to search for jobs at least once a day, which has influenced the growth of gamification.

Gamifying the hiring process

Gamification integrates game mechanics into a business process or a marketing campaign, turning them into a competitive engagement and encouraging audience participation. It is changing how companies create and consume data. The global gamification market, valued at USD 6.8 Bn in 2018, is projected to grow to USD 40 Bn by 2024 at 32% CAGR.

The use of loyalty points in retail is common knowledge. In health and fitness, fitness apps award trophies and points. At work, it can motivate employees and increase their engagement. Companies also use it as a fun way to identify talent innovatively.

Along with measurable in-demand traits, namely critical thinking, attention to detail, problem-solving, verbal and math skills, it can assess aptitude, creative thinking, and problem-solving.

The scores can be used as talent signals to indicate the employee’s potential, regardless of what their resume suggests to you or not. Whether they can set themselves apart from the competition or hire easily, organizations have turned to some form of gamification.

How does it benefit hiring teams?

Gamification brings out applicants’ natural propensities for competitiveness, self-expression, and closure and provides the following benefits:

Appeal to the tech-savvy generation

According to a 2011 Cisco study, millennials perceive the internet as a primary right, along with air, food, water, and shelter. Besides, they will make up 75% of the workforce by 2025 who have spent 10,000 hours on computer gaming by 21 years of age. Gamifying recruitment is critical to attract and retain talent, necessitating investment into it.

Level the playing field

Resumes do not always capture what a candidate brings to the table, especially fresh university graduates. A gamified platform creates a level playing field for everyone. It allows their true skill to shine rather than rely on a candidate’s educational pedigree, background, connections, or socioeconomic influences.

Bring their best selves

Some candidates game interviews, while some do not. Gamification apps rigorously test candidates and help them bring their ‘A-game.’ Research shows that people do well in a playful and fun environment. Gamified hiring apps induce relaxation and give candidates a familiar environment.

Reach far and wide

Fun and rewarding games can attract a wide range of candidates who may not have found out about a particular job opportunity. Gamification can serve as a talent surfacing engine, uncovering talent in unexpected places, helping both candidates and companies find each other in creative ways.

Build brand awareness

Companies can improve engagement, strengthen their brand and personalize their recruitment process to discover the top talent in a fun way.

Integrating gamification – the cream of the crop

Here is a look at successful examples across sectors.

America’s Army – the US army’s attempt was one of the earliest to gamify recruitment. The online video game created in 1999 let participants explore the Army at their own pace. Candidates could determine if soldering aligns with their needs, interests, and abilities.

Google’s Code Jam – Google has organized Google Code Jam, a software writing competition, since 2002 to find fresh talent. Although the contest ends in awarding a cash reward of up to USD 50,000, Google uses it to attract potential hires with the right skills.

My Marriot Hotel – Who doesn’t want to work as a manager of a hotel chain? This successful recruitment game runs on Marriot’s Facebook career page. Players get a virtual experience of running a hotel and are redirecting to a job application when they click the “Do it for real” button.

Formaposte’s Jeu Facteur Academy – The French postal service struggled with employee retention. The new hires would leave, driving up recruiting and hiring budget. They introduced a game that allowed potential candidates to play as a postal carrier. They could wake up early, go to work, and learn about best practices and ethics. The game reduced attrition and increased applications.

Unilever – The Dutch-British consumer goods giant let candidates play a selection of games, evaluating them on their reasoning, aptitude, logic, and machine learning algorithms to assess how suitable they are for the job.

We have companies using online quizzes and challenges. HackerRank and Codility have online programming exercises. developed puzzle games, one of which is about navigating a car towards a goal while facing unexpected challenges. HR Avatar uses simulation assessments that give candidates scenarios like handling demanding customers.

How to gamify recruitment?

A game’s success depends on its ease of use, entertainment value, effectiveness, and validity. It needs extensive research and a lot of behavioral science. Companies may either choose between templated and custom games.

Templates let companies add content and allow little customization at a lower cost. Companies with in-depth storylines, customized environments, scenarios, and characters can go for a custom template.

Determine at what stage you want candidates to play games. Usually, gamification is the most useful in the ‘application’ or ‘assessment’ stages. It is best to collaborate with a gamification company. The below checklist will help companies evaluate vendors:

  • Solid research behind their games.
  • Attractive game design.
  • Uncomplicated and easily understood stories.
  • A clear strategy behind the game.
  • Demonstratable success stories.
  • Regular updates and improvements.
  • The price is within the budget.

Gamification provides a unique opportunity for both parties to engage in unique ways in a world where talent and opportunity align. By introducing the right kind of gamification to the interview process, hiring managers can bring more efficiency and insight.

Draup for Talent provides actionable insights to hiring managers and crafts employee reskilling journeys using our Reskilling Navigation Tool. Integrating the platform with gamification can help companies scout for diverse candidates and help them navigate the hiring funnel.