Gamification in Recruiting

Applicant Tracking Systems For Small CompaniesRecruiters need gamification. No, I don’t mean they need to play more games. What they should do is use the concepts from games that make them so involving and constructive to better recruiting processes. But wait, does that lead to more game playing to understand what makes games involving and constructive? Probably, and that’s a fun prospect. Don’t play games with your recruiting efforts and start using Recruiteze today. Recruiteze is the number one applicant tracking systems for small companies and it’s free!

What Is Gamification?

Gamification is a cool-sounding term for taking concepts and actions from games, particularly video games, and applying them to the rest of life. We all know how involving video games can be, from personal experience or from hearing about other people’s experiences. But it’s more than grabbing and holding attention. Games also provide unique creativity encouragement and mental exercise. Like video games, gamification builds problem-solving skills, creativity, mental acuity, desire to achieve, and good old-fashioned interest.

It’s Been Around Forever

Gamification techniques have been all around us without us even realizing it. When airlines offer frequent flyer rewards, credit cards offer rewards for purchases, and companies use loyalty cards to earn free things for visiting, they are utilizing the goal-designation and pay-off aspect of gamification. This is very gratifying, sometimes even addictive, in gaming, and can prove very useful for businesses and recruiters.

Gamification was even used back in 1942 when the Daily Telegraph printed a crossword puzzle to secretly discover code breakers for the Bletchley Park code breaking division. People “came” for the fun and those with the skills wound up getting an invitation to a job while Bletchley Park sourced and selected candidates the easy way.

The Successes of Gamification

Many companies are proving gamification pays off for recruiting.

Tech services company, Bluewolf, uses gamification to bolster their marketing efforts by offering consultants rewards for completing tasks designated by the company that are all geared toward sharing information about the company. The technique has given Bluewolf a 68% increase in social traffic and 153% boom of blog contributions.

Google has employed more than one gamification technique for their recruiting efforts. In 2004, they created a billboard to attract only the top candidates for an engineer position by featuring a url in the form of a math problem. Curious and skilled mathematicians would work the problem and be the only people to find the website to apply to the job. The other has been a code writing competition called Google Code Jam that gets people to solve rounds of algorithmic puzzles for a chance to win prizes and get noticed by Google. Kind of like reindeer games. Google is clearly succeeding, so I think their tactics are working splendidly.

French postal service Formapost tackled employee retention issues with their Jeu Facteur Academy where potential candidates would play a game set in the life of a Formapost postal carrier. Candidates could feel what it would be like to deal with practical, day-in and day-out aspects of the job like getting to work on time and doing their postal duties to the management’s expectation. Enterprise Gamification Consultancy says, “the number of dropouts went from 25% down to 8%, plus the candidates were better informed and had better questions for the trainers.”

Umbelmania is a game created for Umbel that has coders playing a first-person fighter game where people fight by coding. When you win points, you get further along in the hiring process, helping recruiters effortlessly weed out candidates for a hard skill. It also gets interested candidates pumped about Umbel’s mission, which is to make data a visual experience. Umbel has been named one of the top places to work, so again, cred.

PricewaterhouseCoopers(PwC)’s Hungarian division utilized a 12-day Facebook game called Multipoly to give candidates a chance to live the life inside their company. It was intended as an employee branding tool that became useful as a candidate selection aid. The Hungary division’s recruitment leader Noemi Biro said, “78% of students surveyed over the past four years said they wanted to work for PwC after completing the game. 92% indicated they had a more positive view of the firm. The game has also contributed to a significant increase in the number of job applicants.”

Many companies and entities also use gamification to provide ongoing training to employees. For instance, the Department of Defense uses games for initial and continuous training for projects that are too dangerous, complicated, or expensive for training exercises.

BunchBall says, “IHG needed to connect 900 hotel reps from 90 countries. With gamification, the company could improve knowledge of industry sectors targeted for meeting sales, increase meetings revenue and encourage cross-property and cross-geography collaboration and knowledge sharing.

‘None of these sales professionals are required to complete this training – they’re doing it to improve their knowledge of how to sell to specific types of customers. And yet, we’re finding that users are staying very engaged and are very motivated to attain Expert status,’ explained Ingrid Quimby-High, IHG’s director of meeting sales strategy. ‘We credit the gamification experience for a large part of that.”

The Arguments Against Gamification