Your next job interview could involve playing video games
Companies like Knack and ConnectCube use games to assess job applicants.
Your gaming experience might serve you well at your next job interview, as more companies are using video games to assess potential hires.
"There is a huge amount of money to be made in matching people to their careers better," an economist at M.I.T. Erik Brynjolfsson told The New York Times in a report on this increasingly popular practice.
Brynjolfsson is also an advisory at Knack, a start-up company that uses video games as a screening device. It previously provided its services to companies like Shell and a lot of medical employers. Supposedly, the games should help companies better determine applicants' skills, giving them information on how creative, cautions, adept at multitasking, or easily distracted they are.
In Knack's Wasabi Waiter, for example, players are tasked with serving sushi at a restaurant and must figure out what dishes to recommend to customers. ConnectCube, a company that offers a similar service, has a few memory games, rapid-fire quizzes, and special reasoning tests (which you can demo on its website) that can be administered to potential employees.
"We want to build on the power of games to help people discover what makes them unique: their talents, their traits, their true potential," Knack's website explains. "We believe Knack is the ultimate way to discover your talent and potential. It's more powerful, more authentic, more engaging, and more accessible."
As The Times' article points out, while these games might help companies collect a lot of data on potential hires, the companies using these services also need to worry about applicants gaming the system, and human beings are still better than computers at assessing important "soft skills," like empathy.
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