Future Manager Italy Insights

Gamification and Talent Acquisition

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Author: Future Manager Research Center

Gamification has become a successful strategy in the selection and recruitment of personnel, although it is still very much discussed and controversial. Purists and conservatives also exist in the world of Human Resources and they tend to look with a certain diffidence at those practices that are children of the new generations. What is so revolutionary about Gamification and how can it be applied to the Talent Acquisition sphere?

First of all the term Gamification means the use of typical game mechanisms within scenarios that are not commonly thought of as playful, namely, in business processes, in recruitment, in training or in development, with the aim of solving problems in a less conventional way. More specifically, this new strategy, if used in the recruitment of young talents, has the power to shake the cobwebs out from all those archaic recruiting processes. Taking the game seriously, pertinently, and conscientiously can for sure bring more than one advantage to selecting a new recruit.

Gamification saves time (it is superfluous to specify that time is money, isn’t it?), slightly postponing the phase of the individual interview, in this case preceded by a test during which it is possible to propose well-designed games developed in order to test certain skills, so as to be able to carry out a first large screening of candidates according to their needs.

Thanks to this approach it is possible to verify very specific skills, developing games that test in detail those skills required by a company. It is also an option that contributes a lot to defuse the tension typical of a formal interview.

A choice of this type can also turn out to be a strategic move to beat the competition between companies, increasing the competitiveness of those who use it: it is important to attract candidates of great potential, to do so it is essential to demonstrate that you are a modern company, open to change and in step with trends.

The demonstration of the extensive use of Gamification is provided to us by the US military, with future recruits being tested through a highly realistic virtual simulator of military operations called Battlespace. The best will be selected by the score they receive.

A clarification, however, is a mandatory: it must be very clear that to “gamify” the recruitment processes it is necessary to rely on competent personnel who will carry out the process by taking care of every aspect of the matter. Improvising you as gamification experimenters may not bring you any useful results. It is a very serious strategic plan that requires a great specialization, so be very careful and remember that it is not like playing Risk with your friends!