Game-based assessments add interaction and engagement to virtual hiringÂ practices.
By Larry Nash
All facets of business have been disrupted in the pastÂ year, including the way organizations source, attract,Â assess, and hire future-focused talent. CompaniesÂ pivoted to a virtual work environment, forcing recruitersÂ to quickly shift hiring strategies to continue fosteringÂ connections with and securing top candidates. Now, asÂ organizations continue to operate amid uncertainty andÂ look to return to in-person interactions in the future,Â talent acquisition teams can modernize the hiringÂ process by incorporating innovative technologies andÂ tools like game-based assessments.
Game-based assessments are interactive games builtÂ to assess non-technical skills like cognitive abilities andÂ personality constructs in quick and engaging ways.Â Collecting this information can help recruiters form aÂ more complete assessment of a candidate.
At Ernst & Young LLP (EY US), game-based assessmentsÂ arenât the sole deciding factor to move a candidateÂ forward, but they do offer numerous benefits: TheyÂ can provide better insight into the distinctive skillsÂ a candidate can bring to the organization; reduceÂ unconscious bias in the sourcing stage; enhance theÂ candidate experience and interview process; andÂ help teams make better, more data-informed hiringÂ decisions.
Enhancing the Overall Interview Process
Just as recruiters and HR leaders are adjusting to theÂ virtual hiring process, prospective candidates are havingÂ to adapt too. With interactions limited to virtual formsÂ of communication, prospective candidates are beingÂ asked to showcase their knowledge and skills throughÂ tech-enabled tactics like prerecorded and live videoÂ interviews.
Game-based assessments can help by keepingÂ candidates engaged throughout the hiring process.Â Candidates play a series of games that are aligned toÂ the cognitive abilities and personality constructs ofÂ high performers. Each game has a time limit and aÂ candidate will answer as many questions as they canÂ in that timeframe. Not only does this approach makeÂ recruitment more interactive, but it is a fast way toÂ advance in the hiring process while providing the talentÂ acquisition team with useful insights on the applicant.
According to EY US, gamification can also accelerate theÂ interview cycle and screening process. While a 15- toÂ 20-minute assessment doesnât necessarily eliminate theÂ need for multiple interviews, it does help recruiters getÂ to know the candidate faster and ask better questions.Â These assessments can test specific skill sets likeÂ innovative thinking, creativity, and time managementâall of which wouldnât be as easily analyzed through aÂ resume or a traditional interview. Plus, condensing theÂ time between interviews and a decision on whether toÂ extend an offer benefits both the candidate and theÂ organization.
Making Data-Informed Decisions
Just as many companies are relying on data to makeÂ operations more efficient, so too are HR leadersÂ leveraging it during the hiring process. The use ofÂ gamification gives organizations an opportunity toÂ assess a candidateâs non-technicalÂ skills and attributes, which areÂ often difficult to determine inÂ a behavior-based interview.
The games gauge howÂ a candidate interactsÂ with and processesÂ information. TheÂ assessments provideÂ additional insights onÂ a candidate, includingÂ attributes like analyticalÂ thinking, problemÂ solving, personality, andÂ work style.
By analyzing the dataÂ that results from theseÂ assessments, leaders canÂ better determine whether aÂ candidate would be successful inÂ the role. Ultimately, this can result in aÂ better-informed hiring decision and can have aÂ direct impact on business outcomes due to higher levels ofÂ employee engagement and lower employee turnover.
So far, early candidate feedback about their experienceÂ using the technology has been positive. Each candidateÂ receives a report that summarizes the uniqueÂ competencies and insights that were assessed. RecentÂ candidates shared that they were impressed by howÂ accurately the assessment was able to develop a profileÂ of their working style, personality, and how they processÂ information. It was more comprehensive than theyÂ expected, given how short the games were.
Reducing Unconscious Bias
Organizations like EY US have long embedded diversityÂ and inclusion into their business processes, including hiringÂ practices. As companies begin to ramp up hiring efforts,Â they face an increased demand to hire and develop a moreÂ diverse workforce. Yet, given the human element of theÂ recruiting process, the potential for bias still exists in manyÂ interviewing and assessment processes today.
If hiring were simply based on a resume or an interview,Â recruiters could unknowingly allow preconceived yetÂ unconscious biases toward accents, appearance, careerÂ experiences, gender, and age to play a part in the hiringÂ decision. Adding anonymous, game-based assessmentsÂ can provide valuable data that helpsÂ showcase the best person for the roleÂ without human bias. In fact, onÂ average, companies that haveÂ used virtual interviewingÂ processes like gamificationÂ to remove biases have seenÂ a 16% increase in theirÂ diverse pipelines.
Putting Plans into Action
Organizations andÂ potential candidates areÂ demanding recruiters moveÂ faster and more boldlyÂ during the hiring process, butÂ introducing and implementingÂ new technologies takes time andÂ people. At EY US, HR leaders offerÂ training sessions with teams across allÂ areas of hiringâfrom campus recruiters toÂ hiring teams and the executive level. The trainings offerÂ education on the benefits of these tools, how to useÂ them in the recruiting process, and give participants theÂ opportunity to experience these assessments firsthand.Â This is critical in ensuring the best experience for bothÂ the candidate and the recruiter.
Many companies have used the new virtual environmentÂ as an opportunity to analyze their operations and rethinkÂ who they are and how they work. The same can be trueÂ for the talent attraction and acquisition space. EY USÂ has embraced technology in a multitude of ways andÂ will continue to do so in the future. By implementingÂ technology like game-based assessments, virtualÂ interviewing, and automation into recruitment, the hiringÂ process can be a better experience for both the candidateÂ and for the organization. By leveraging the power ofÂ data while maintaining the human touch in the candidateÂ journey, organizations can make better-informed decisionsÂ to save both time and revenue.
Larry Nash is the EY Americas director of talent attraction andÂ acquisition at Ernst & Young LLP.
The views reflected in this article are those of the author and do notÂ necessarily reflect the views of Ernst & Young LLP or other membersÂ of the global EY organization.