SmartRecruiters Blog

Game-Based Assessments: Select and Engage the Best Candidates and Enhance your Brand

Candidate testing has established itself as a reliable selection tool for today’s recruiter. Thus companies everywhere are implementing them as standard practice. According to a Wall Street Journal article, “eight of the top 10 U.S. private employers now administer pre-hire tests in their job applications for some positions.” The rates of companies using such tools continues to rise.

Traditionally, psychometric assessments manifest in the form of personality surveys, ability tests, and situational judgement tests. However, as competition for talent increases, a new challenge arises – is there a way to make assessments more engaging in the digital age?

Well, there is! Enter game-based assessments!

Why Consider Game-based Assessments

The challenge of making assessments more engaging can be understood by the evolution of media. At first, we could communicate our ideas using only printed words. Then, we began adding images, which reduced the number of words needed. Next came video, which further reduced the necessity for words. As we move beyond video, a more interactive form of media is video games. As of March 2015, 59% of Americans play video games. Video games can be used just as well or even better to deliver information while simultaneously making an experience more engaging.

Video game assessments require candidates to use a series of soft skills blending the traditional situational judgement test with a fun and interactive story, and are the next logical step in creating an engaging situational judgement test. The concept of natural language responses is used to assess a candidate’s soft skills as they interact with different personality types within a scenario. Immediate feedback is provided to the candidate as they progress through the game. These assessments can be anywhere from 10 minutes to 30 minutes depending the the number and type of competencies being assessed. Similar to most traditional assessments, a report containing scores for each competency is provided to the recruiter once the assessment is completed.

How Game-based Assessments Impact Your Hiring Strategy

With more candidates willing to take game-based assessments due to their engaging nature, the benefits are many:

  1. Get rich insights into candidates’ abilities, behaviors and preferences by collecting multiple data points.
  2. Enhance your employer brand by adopting innovative assessments.
  3. Reduce candidate drop-off by providing a more engaging candidate experience in a short and fun package.
  4. Use of strong, well-established psychometric properties ensures a more deeper and objective assessment; candidates are less able to fake or distort their responses.
  5. Accurately select and hire the best talent.

Game-based assessments are expected to become a high growth area in the coming years; specifically in screening candidates and using data for people analytics within companies. Use of the old approaches will decline in favor of these new methodologies as long as more distribution channels open.

Start using game based assessments today

Journey has integrated with SmartRecruiters to allow you to deploy engaging game-based assessments to your candidates in seconds. Incorporate game-based assessments directly into your hiring workflow, trigger them to candidates automatically, and check the test results right from the candidate profile page inside SmartRecruiters.

Learn more by visiting Journey in the SmartRecruiters Marketplace.


This article was written by Rajiv Roopan, CEO of Atlas. He is a game designer and has been making video games since high school. Rajiv came up with the idea of making a game based psychometric assessment while closely working with recruiters and his team to establish a strong hiring policy at his previous job. He has worked for NASA and Google.

This article was also co-written by Julie Weintraub Chief Science Officer of Atlas. Julie is an Industrial/Organizational Psychologist with over fourteen years of experience in Human Resources. Julie has created assessments for nationwide leadership development programs and designed selection and promotion processes for entry-level through executive levels for various organizations. Julie was previously a Lead Research Psychologist at the US Office of Personnel Management.

Rajiv Roopan