How to Engage Candidates through Gamification

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The recruitment journey begins in the ocean of job ads and goes through the stormy seas of screening before finally reaching the shore of the infamous interview.

The hiring process is sometimes such a long, tiring, and daunting voyage that instead of enjoying the opportunity of growing and proudly showcasing their abilities in front of recruiters, candidates tend to drown in pools of anxiety. And let’s not forget the other side of the coin: recruiters. They need to consider so many elements and metrics while hunting for the best people in the market, that they sometimes forget one crucial thing for all the parties involved: we perform better when we enjoy what we are doing.

But how exactly can you take your recruiting process from dreadful and boring to enjoyable? The answer is fun, and the means to that end is gamification.

Pause: What exactly is gamification?

Remember the Candy Crush fever? Or what about Fortnite, the reason behind the latest game-craze? They are such simple videogames with no grand technology or graphics in their design, but they do have one key and magical element: Fun; which translates into engagement.

So, if fun is so effective at catching people’s attention why not extrapolate game theory, mechanics, and design to make recruiting an enjoyable process?

Main Quest: Gamify the process

Gamification can be applied in many non-game environments by incorporating software that imitates game mechanics on processes of education, marketing, and recruiting; like the Virtual Army Experience by the U.S. Army, However, it has become more and more popular in in the business field lately, where companies are gradually joining the trend of encouraging creativity and innovation through play by means of creative thinking methodologies such as Lego Serious Play (LSP). This methodology promotes innovative strategies in a collaborative and inclusive way, by having candidates build landscape models together, exchanging opinions and bonding with the group or the recruiter, in order to evaluate their soft skills (creativity, openness leadership, etc.) and eliminating the chances of getting “prepared” answers during the interview process.

When applying gamification to the hiring and recruitment process, you can test the on-the-job performance of your candidates through so-called “serious games” that assess the skills you consider essential for the roles you’re looking to fill. You could even save time and money by tailoring the process to the candidate persona you are after, while your candidates get immersed in your company’s policies and culture in a creative and fun way.

A successful example of gamification is PwC’s Multipoly Next recruiting game. Candidates need to complete different quests and tasks for which they are rewarded and accumulate points that push them closer to getting their dream job.

Not only will candidates stay engaged and have fun, but you will also have access to infinite data on how they solve each issue and complete each task, giving you a deeper understanding of every individual beyond their work experience and education on their CV.

Get bonus points through planification

However, coming up with a platform like this is not all fun and games—ironically. The most important part of gamification lies in the planification stage, just don’t forget about the five main principles behind your project:

1. Eyes on the prize. Make sure you have a clear objective for the game. Don’t try to add to many variables to it. If you are using it to recruit the best talent out there, don’t you worry too much about the likes and follows on your Social Media pages. Instead, come up with missions for your applicants to showcase their best skills.
2. Keep it simple and to the point. Don’t be distracted by aesthetics: functionality and relevant information are the key. Make it user-friendly, inclusive and entertaining. Your goal is engagement!
3. Power up through data. While “players” complete their tasks, you will gather valuable information about your potential candidates. You will see them in action and you will get feedback on how they use their best skills and secret weapons to succeed.
4. Your code is not unbreakable. Some people like to cheat, so your best option is to establish security measures and policies that will serve as filters to achieve the best results. Pay attention to your data and always do a follow-up on your candidates; no one likes to be cheated.

Quest Completed

Hiring is not a game, but you can bring your A-game to your recruitment and hiring process by being innovative, versatile, and above all fun. Work is a serious matter, but that doesn’t mean it has to be an intimidating and awful thing. So, press start to begin an innovative way of recruiting.

Grace Cattini
Online Copy & Content Writer