Could gaming be the future of recruitment?

It has been predicted that over 70% of global 2000 organisations will be using gamed-based recruitment campaigns in the next two years. Already Deloitte, BBC and Network Rail are using games to recruit candidates, amongst others.

So how is gaming being used to recruit candidates?

skyrise city

Games-based assessments are the next generation of psychometric testing and are games designed to test your mental agility, cognitive speed, attention span, spatial aptitude and numerical reasoning – not skill. They tend to be delivered through app-based platforms and are tapping into the technology that students have grown up with and are used to. The image to the left shows an example of this type of game – in this instance, Skyrise City developed by Arctic Shores (image credit: Arctic Shores).

Jill Summers, Head of Assessment and Development at GradWeb, suggests that “Games-based assessments provide a much more engaging and motivating experience for candidates, which is why recruiters will continue to move toward them. They assess some attributes and traits that aren’t easily assessed by traditional cognitive or personality tools.”

Why is it being used?

  • Research from Deloitte last year has found that 80% of applicants have expressed frustration with the application process, which can be lengthy – involving tests, assessment centres and interviews.
  • Students can prepare in advance for tests and competency questions, which means that the answers they give may not indicate their decision-making skills, but instead they are simply remembering ‘the right answers.’ Candidates cannot prepare a response to a game-based assessment, so it’s assessing real life behaviours instead of practised responses.

How do games-based assessments work?

  1. Candidate plays the game > the game tests an applicant’s cognition, emotions, interpersonal style, thinking style and how well they deliver results
  2. Candidate receives a profile based on their game scores
  3. Candidate’s profile is compared to profiles of existing role holders and compared for likeness

Pros and Cons

+ Aims to assess real-life behaviours, not practised responses

+ Aims to combat unconscious bias in interviews – the interviewer is informed of a candidate’s whole profile, not just aptitude test results

How are tests adjusted for disability and diversity?

 Are the games effectively testing team work/interaction skills if they are designed to be played individually?

Key messages for students:

  • You can’t prepare for these games, and you shouldn’t!

The games-based assessments are designed to test your instincts and decision-making skills, not revision.

  • Don’t be scared

The games-based assessments are designed to test your instincts and decision-making skills, not revision.


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