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Gaming in the Recruitment Process

This article accompanies Let's Play!

Saturday, June 16, 2012
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One aspect of gamification is to actually turn some tasks normally performed online into a sort of game.

When Robyn Collins -- director of HR at Upstream, a Redwood City, Calif.-based mobile marketing-technology provider -- was looking to hire a number of creative people, she wanted to base her short list on a qualifying aptitude test rather than a curriculum vitae.

But asking people to spend an hour or more taking a long, dry test even before they get an initial interview was hard. So Collins turned the test into a "challenge" by using gamification factors such as missions, levels and paths.

Each mission is aligned to a specific skill such as "statistical understanding," "ability to manipulate the English language," "ability to manipulate a foreign language without actual knowledge of that language" and "attention to detail."

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Applicants could see their scores and compare them to the top score of 690.

The company then reviews the CVs of top scorers and the hiring process proceeds with those people in the traditional way.

The challenge has been available only a few months and, already, 500 people have taken it. "We certainly got a lot more people taking the challenge than we could have hoped would have taken a test," Collins says.

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