By now we’re sure you’ve heard of Domino’s Pizza Magnate game. Or Google’s infamous “code jams.” But do you know the secret behind these recruiting strategies? And we don’t just mean the secret to why massive, global-dominant companies like these are using games to help identify who they want to work for them. We’re talking about the secret of how these gamified platforms can actually help you, dear job seeker, get hired by your employer of choice.
That’s right. The move toward gamified recruiting not only assists the company in determining who will be the best fit for their open positions, who will stick around the longest, and who has the skills to navigate their corporate structure the best—it’s also making it easier for the right people to get hired for their dream jobs.
Gamified Recruiting Humanizes the Hiring Process
At first glance, you’re probably saying, “wait, what?” But in very real ways the increasing use of automated digital gamified online platforms is actually working to humanize the hiring process. Think about it, last time you applied for a job, what did the process look like? According to our experience, most likely something like this:
- Your saved search on an aggregator like Indeed or Glassdoor brought up an enticing opportunity, so you
- Went to the company career portal to read the full job description. Then you
- Took some time to independently read up on the company, liking what you saw the next step was
- Filling out an application that took 45+ minutes, with each entry on your resume being re-entered manually along with “assessment” questions that only taxed your ability to Google appropriate answers.
- Then you waited.
- And waited.
- And waited.
- And finally, somewhere between 3 weeks and 6 months later, you received a fully automated robo-rejection email that reassured you that while you weren’t a good fit for this position, the company would keep your information in their database and would be in touch when a great fit came up. And there were grammatical errors and misspellings everywhere in that email.
Does that sound about right? That doesn’t sound like an enjoyable process from where we’re sitting, and we’re truly sorry you had to suffer that indignity.
Now how does this look:
- You follow a handful of companies you know you’d love to work for on social media and one day one of them posts the perfect job, so you jump on it and
- Clicking through find a landing page dedicated to that opening. The job description is there, in full, along with a link that says, “let’s see if this is a good fit.” Clicking that
- You find yourself immersed in an interactive simulation of a meeting room where you get to prove your mettle by designing the perfect update to a theoretical software widget and interact with your teammates. After 30 minutes
- You’re done with that and the exit page asks for contact information. The following day
- You have an email from a real-life recruiter waiting for you, asking for the best time to give you a call to discuss the job further. Oh, and if you wouldn’t mind attaching a recent resume to your response that would be awesome.
Sounds pretty darn great, doesn’t it? That’s what we mean by humanizing the hiring process. From this point in your candidate journey, you’ll only be dealing directly with actual people. No bots scanning your resume for keywords, no automated rejection letters, and no chance of being lost in the black hole that some application processes have become.
Gamification Removes Stress and Addresses The Hard Questions
Many of us don’t perform well under the spotlight. That’s just a simple fact of human nature. Add to that the stress of really wanting this job and knowing you need to impress the interviewer, and you often get a string of buzzwords, used incorrectly even know you know the right usage, combined with a fair amount of freezing and not being able to find any words to say at all.
By making the first round, or two, of the process a literal game (at least as far as it looks from your perspective as the job seeker), much of this stress is removed. And on the recruiter’s end of things, they get a wealth of information about your work ethic, personal style, and more to get them started.
In addition, these gamified stages can be used to convey a detailed and accurate portrayal of the company and team in question. This is key in today’s job market as many of the folks in your shoes are young Millennials who may not have extensive work histories or know much about corporate life. The give and take of a simulated office environment, or one of the myriad other game styles in use, not only let you shine without the pressure, they let the company inform you and help guide your decision making process as well.
“Show, Don’t Tell” is the New Name of the Game
Resumes have changed right along with the job market. As the market becomes more and more candidate-focused, skills have become the sought-after key for recruiters looking to fill their open seats from the available candidates. That means resumes have morphed into more of a show than a tell document.
Instead of a timeline of past employment dates and titles, today’s resumes read like a laundry list of the specific skills used and the outcomes of the projects they were used on.
No buzzy keywords here.
The same holds true for today’s gamified recruitment process, it’s all about demonstrating your competencies rather than listing your titles for a bot to scan. Which is the better representation of your skills and abilities, a musty CV that you packed with the keywords you think the recruiting software will be scanning for? Or an interactive game where you get to show the world how well you know your stuff?
Yes, it’s true that there is likely some AI at work behind the scenes when it comes to scoring these games, but that’s a far cry from a pre-programmed scanner that only looks for the words someone told it to look for. Today’s AI-powered gamified recruiting tools learn on the job and are capable of compiling amazingly accurate profiles of the people playing.
After all, you just spent some time putting your cooperation, collaboration, and problem-solving skills on full display building a widget in a virtual world. Wouldn’t you rather be judged by that than by how many keywords you could artfully cram onto one page?
And as far as the recruiter goes, the information they get from these simulations and games is invaluable when it comes to determining cultural fits, applicable job skills, and so much more. Your chances of getting the perfect job go up exponentially when the process starts with a game rather than a scanner bot.