Why Game-based Assessments are the need of the hour?

Games at Work May 29, 2019

Jane McGonigal, a game designer, in her Ted Talk said, “If we want to create a better world, the old school of thought ‘Games are the antithesis of work’, has to change.”

Though the idea may seem counter-intuitive, here are some reasons why we need more ‘game-based approaches’ at work, especially in talent management.

  1. Gaming brings out the problem solver in you

Jane begins her Ted talk by presenting 2 photographs -

  • A Gamer’s Face
Image Courtesy: James McGonigal TED Talk

This face showing “the sense of urgency, a little bit of fear, but intense concentration, deep, deep focus on tackling a really difficult problem.”

  • I Am Not Good At Life Face
Image Courtesy: James McGonigal TED Talk

Unfortunately, we see this face more often in our everyday life as we try to tackle urgent problems!

If given a choice, wouldn’t you want someone at your workplace who approaches work just as the Gamer does — deeply interested in the problem at hand, optimistic, involved and energetic? After all, our progressive economies demand active problem solvers. And what would be a better approach than games to unearth problem solvers?

2. Relevance to Jobs

Sure, games are “fun”. Game-based assessments are “engaging”. But what is that one thing about them that stands out? These bespoke games are designed to identify specific behaviors that are relevant to jobs and the tasks handled on a day-to-day basis.

A talent leader, thus, can choose a combination of games for a specific role.

· For example, if you’re applying for a Sales Executive role, you will play the game(s) measuring your ability to negotiate, managing customer satisfaction, and prioritizing tasks.

· If you’re applying for the role of a Product/Project Manager, you will play the game(s) measuring your analytical thinking, your ability to multitask, and your ability to drive for results.

In simple words, games provide a deeper understanding of how the abilities of an individual can affect his/her performance on the job.

3. Fairness

If candidates are assessed through games, wouldn’t gamers be at an added advantage? Not really. Fundamentally, game-based assessments are the engaging and immersive avatar of traditional assessments. These games are designed to ensure that the candidates without any prior gaming experience can also play.

GIF Courtesy of James Thatcher @Giphy

Fair enough! But, how do these games ensure this is brought into practice? Game-based assessments begin with an interactive tutorial that guides participants on the do’s and don’ts in the game in the form of audio-visual instructions. Additionally, participants go through a few practice rounds with guided feedback to ensure they are prepared before the actual test.

Thus, these methods provide game-based assessments with the firm ground to bring results with comparable validity across groups of different social, cultural, and ethnic backgrounds.

If you are looking at making game-based assessments a part of your talent strategy, click here to know more.

Games at Work is a 6-article series written by Dr. Meghna Varma, Principal Research Consultant, at PerspectAI. The series takes a deep dive at how Games can transform our workplaces. Look out for the next edition of the series on 19th May.


Great! You've successfully subscribed.
Great! Next, complete checkout for full access.
Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.
Success! Your account is fully activated, you now have access to all content.