Business games, open innovation challenges, hackathons… How do the most successful companies hire talented people by sourcing innovation? How do you spot the one in a million candidate? Here is the recipe for a fruitful challenge.
AIM FOR MILLENNIALS, HIRE THE DIGITAL NATIVES
I am a bit tired of hearing “We really should start thinking more about millennials because they are the future”. No, they are not. They are the present.
Everyone needs to face it. They represent a third of our active population and will speak for half of it by 2020. Millennials are already more than baby boomers in the US. They are the main nightmare of companies nowadays, except when companies hire them. It takes one to know one.
Keen on gaming, always socially challenging themselves on a 2.0 level, they have an appeal for competitions. Business games, open innovation challenges, and hackathons are the way to go.
PUT A REAL PROBLEM ON THE TABLE
Believe it or not, outsiders will enhance your company’s strategy so you need to put a real problem before them.
Having worked at big companies, I know what it is like to keep one’s nose to the grindstone for weeks on a single problem, going back home at night and finding a solution talking to my roommate who is a construction worker.
Why don’t the biggest companies do their own ads? When you are looking for advertising insights, you seek an external point of view, same here.
The most innovative brands are keen on challenges. Take a look at L’Oréal that has been organizing L’Oréal Brandstorm for the past 26 years. Last year, 25,000 students took up the challenge organized by Agorize. They came up with more than 5,500 innovations.
Innovative, disruptive, groundbreaking.
CAST YOUR NET IN THE OCEAN, NOT A HOOK
You have better luck finding the right employee casting a net in the ocean than fishing with a hook. Challenges are an amazing way to see a whole bunch of candidates at the same time.
Imagine the lazy Tinder user who just swipes continuously to get numerous matches per day. Now imagine Tinder offers a new feature: the mega-swipe. Users can now choose between swiping as usual or swipe once a day but this one counts for a thousand swipes. What do you think they will choose?
TEST THEM ON THEIR SOFT SKILLS
What does your company need? What kind of candidates would match the corporate culture of your company? Ask yourself the following: “How can I really know if this applicant is a critical observer with an empathetic mind crossed with an ergonomic sensitivity?”
It sure seems difficult to analyze these soft skills in a series of interviews. And that’s the beauty of a business game. The employer can test candidates in a particular situation: yours.That's the beauty of a business game. The employer can test candidates in a particular situation: yours.Click To Tweet
BE DEAD, ON TARGET
Awesome advantage of a challenge: you can apply a great targeting.
Make sure that your participants are the right ones. I want this kind of student, this kind of startup, this kind of people. Some challenges target specific schools, which can be a great idea if you also want to boost your employer brand towards one school (and their future graduated students).
BE FUN, BUT NOT TOO MUCH
If the main goal of your challenge is to recruit new talents, do not make it too fun.
You need to find the right balance between an attractive pitch that is going to attract loads of participants (cast your net, remember?) and a corporate challenge. Give a genuine idea of what it is like to work for your company so when they join your organization, they know what they signed up for. It will make your new employees delighted with their job.
Always remember that a happy employee is :
- Two times less sick
- Six times less off work
- Nine times more faithful
- 31% more productive
- 55% more creative
Have a great challenge.