October 13, 2013

Big data may hold job seeker’s fate

Tech firms are developing video games and online questionnaires to measure a candidate’s suitability.

Bloomberg News

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Applications from a huge pool of candidates via the Internet are inundating job recruiters. But new video games and online questionnaires may help them to winnow the field.

Bloomberg News photo by Ron Antonelli

Evolv’s advantage is the oceans of information it has tracked on the survey results and those candidates’ real-life outcomes if they got hired: how well they performed on the job and how long they ended up staying with the company. In the way that years of experience informs a veteran recruiter, terabytes of data teach Evolv’s algorithms to see who has the makings of a good hire.

The patterns gleaned since the company’s founding in 2007 have debunked many of the common assumptions held by recruiters, Evolv executives say. For example, a history of job-hopping or long bouts of unemployment has little relationship with how long a candidate will stay at his or her next job, according to Evolv’s analysis of call center agents.

STARS SERVE AS BENCHMARK

New York-based ConnectCubed has also developed software to determine the personality and cognitive abilities of job applicants that, at its largest clients, is tailored for that specific company. ConnectCubed has existing workers at those businesses complete its video games and questionnaires so the behavioral profiles of the star employees serve as a benchmark for who managers should hire in the future.

“When new people apply, you can say, wow, this guy has all the makings of our top salesmen,” said Michael Tanenbaum, chief executive officer and co-founder. “These are things that are impossible to measure from a resume, especially with educational backgrounds that are often more determined by socioeconomic status than your innate ability.”

Juhl at Vungle said the goal is to experiment with a variety of tools that can offer more information about each candidate and make the recruiting process less of a guessing game.

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