Gamification in the recruitment process


The use of gamification in the recruitment process is nothing new. One of the earliest examples was an online game developed by the US Army in 1999 called “America’s Army”. It allowed players to explore army life army in some detail, which increased the recruitment reach and scope of candidates.

Since then, gamification has been used by many organisations from prominent global companies to small start-ups, as a way of enticing the new generation of workers onto their staff.

Online assessments and games can also be used to test candidate’s knowledge, in some cases even in place of the requirement to see traditional qualifications. Using this as an early test can be helpful in removing the unconscious bias that some HR professionals might have against certain candidates, allowing a more diverse set of contenders to reach the short list.

Using technology and the gaming boom in recruitment also firmly places organisations at the forefront of the industry by showing candidates that their company has its finger on the pulse of innovation.

However, it is not without drawbacks. Critics of gamification are concerned that it could expose companies to a risk of exploitation, with dishonest applicants identifying potential loopholes in the automated process.

Gamification can certainly reduce costs in the recruitment process but should be used in addition to, and not in place of, genuine human interaction. After all, a candidate’s online persona could be very different to how they might present in a staff atmosphere.

Screening candidates should take priority after initial selections are made. Checking the candidate’s education, employment history, immigration status and criminal background are crucial if organisations want to avoid costly mistakes in the recruitment process.

Genuine candidates will welcome the human touch of comprehensive screening. Finding a balance between showing a candidate that your organisation is an innovator in its field, and that you are serious about finding a candidate you can trust, is key.

Gamification can be a useful tool at the early stages of the recruitment process. It can quickly cut the initial candidates in testing their abilities, skills and character traits. But, as the process becomes more focused and the shortlist list gets smaller, it is time for the humans to take back control to ensure that all candidates are authentic.