Can Mobile Video Games Help IT Managers To Find The Right Employees?

IT managers need a way to pick out the best candidates to hire
IT managers need a way to pick out the best candidates to hire
Image Credit: Steven Andrew

Any time that we have an opening on our team, it becomes the responsibility of the IT manager to use our IT manager skills to evaluate candidates and pick the right one. However, it turns out that this can be much harder than it looks. Many candidates look fine during the interview process but turn out to be poor fits for our team. No matter how much IT manager training we’ve had, this continues to be a task that we find hard to do well. Could the arrival of mobile video games provide us with the answer that we’ve been looking for?

How Mobile Video Games Can Help To Evaluate Candidates

So how would all of this work? The first thing that you would have to do is to create a new mobile video game. No, you don’t have to come up with the next Candy Crush, you just have to have a game created that will interest people who might be interested in joining your team. Since this is not something that you normally do, you’ll probably have to go to an outside firm to get the game created. It’s going to be your responsibility to identify what skills you are going to want the game player to have in order to determine if they would be a good match for your open position.

Next you are going to have to make your new game widely available. The game will have to be free so that you attract as many players as possible. You’ll probably want to let the players know that this game is also a real world recruiting tool that is being used by your company. The thinking behind using a video game to evaluate a potential job candidate is to provide you with some insights into how a candidate might possibly perform as a member of your team based on how they play the game.

Games that have been used to evaluate job seekers have required the player to trade stocks in order to make the most money, solve mazes, and run simulated restaurants. By playing the game, the app will be able to collect enough information on the player to start to build a detailed model of a player’s ability. If the player shows grit and tenacity, then they may be a good candidate to become a leader on your team. Likewise, the app may show that someone is not good at making snap decisions or that they show poor judgement skills. The goal is to measure a candidate’s strengths and weaknesses in a way that they will enjoy.

How IT Managers Can Use Mobile Video Games To Make Good Choices

The reason that using mobile video games may be such a powerful tool for you is because the games can provide you with a more objective picture of a candidate than traditional screening processes can. When you interview a candidate face-to-face, they may be acting in a way that they think that you want to see. Alternatively, if you administer a personality test to job candidates then you are going to have to deal with self-reporting which is notoriously inaccurate.

One of the biggest challenges that IT managers have when they are looking to fill an open position on their team is that job candidates have been trained so well. When you ask them questions, they may provide you with the answers that you want to hear even if the information that they are providing is not accurate. By using mobile video games, employers are tapping into growing trend. People play mobile video games for more than two hours each day. This is up by 57% in the last two years.

There are some challenges to using games to evaluate job seekers. There is the possibility that a job candidate may not take the game seriously enough for you to collect enough information in order to evaluate them. The game may also be seen by people looking for jobs as a sort of arbitrary hoop that has to be jumped through instead of a valid part of the interviewing process. Using games can be very confusing for people who are looking for a job. The key thing to understand is that using games to evaluate job candidates has just started and should not be used as the only way to evaluate a job seeker.

What All Of This Means For You

When it comes time to hire a new member of your team, IT managers are facing a number of challenges. They may have several apparently high quality candidates and it can be a real challenge to try to sort them out to determine who would be the best suited to join their team and participate in IT team building. A new way of helping to sort through a list of candidates has become available: mobile video games.

In order to use a mobile video game to evaluate job seekers, an IT manager would have to work with an outside company to have an mobile video game created that tested the player skills that would be required to perform their job. As people play the video game, the app is able to start to build an evaluation of the player based on their playing style. This can reveal both good and bad personality characteristics. Video games can provide you with a more well-rounded view of a job candidate and they can allow you to see through standard answers to standard questions. You’ll have to be careful using mobile video games because candidates may not take them seriously and they may not fully understand how you are using them as a part of the interview process.

Picking the right person to invite to join your team is a tough job. Any tools that can help to make this easier have to be welcomed. Mobile video games seem to offer the best of both worlds: they are enjoyable for the candidate to use and they can provide you with valuable insights that you might not be able to get in any other way. Take a look at this new tool and evaluate if you can use it to make better choices when it comes time to hire the next person for your team.

– Dr. Jim Anderson
Blue Elephant Consulting –
Your Source For Real World IT Management Skills™

Question For You: What would be the best way to communicate to game players that they are actually participating in a job interview?

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What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time

As IT managers, one of the many challenges that we face on a daily basis is using our IT manager skills to keep our team together. I don’t care how hip and cool your company may be, it’s always a challenge trying to both find and then keep the best workers who make up your team. What it takes to make this happen is something that is always changing and we need to make sure that we use our IT manager training to keep up with what our team members are expecting us to do.

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