Escape Rooms – a unique alternative to traditional assessment centres?
Escape rooms are usually a popular choice for team building, however an increasing number of companies and organizations - such as Nationwide, are experimenting with using escape rooms as part of their assessment centre.
Assessment Centres can be designed to incorporate an ‘escape room’ challenge, assessing relevant competencies and behaviours important for success in the role. Generally, escape rooms have been included to provide a more personal, engaging and memorable experience for candidates.
What do the experts say?
According to Arctic Shores, ambition and collaboration, pioneering attitude, agility and responsibility are among the many candidate attributes that could be observed using escape rooms or escape room-like scenarios.
Because these games involve solving a challenge (i.e. mission, quest), players naturally let their personality guide them through the clues and the issues. Therefore, it is possible to assess behaviours such as collaboration, problem-solving, outside-of-the-box thinking, leadership etc. and, so far, feedback from both employers and candidates regarding escape rooms has been positive.
Dentsu Aegis used our escape rooms as a component of their ‘Making Assessment Fun’ strategy to provide recruiters with an opportunity to make real life behavioural observations of their candidates and further enhance the candidate experience. Arctic Shores have worked with Dentsu to determine which behaviours important for success at this organisation could be observed with the help of our escape rooms.
What does the future hold?
At present, there is limited research regarding the long-term success (i.e. ROI, low attrition etc) of utilising escape rooms as a method of predicting future candidate behaviour and performance.
Nevertheless, immersive environments such as escape rooms, where candidates behave much more naturally than during some traditional exercises, have the potential to provide excellent insight on both individual performance and team dynamics - provided that this insight is backed-up by professional and specialist support.
Moreover, bespoke escape rooms, with tasks designed to replicate job-specific challenges and a well-designed behaviourally-anchored scoring key developed with the help of occupational psychologists, could provide an effective measure of organisational competencies.
Fun and innovative, when used in combination with other assessment techniques, escape rooms can enhance candidate experience and boost employer brand. With the rising popularity of gamified assessment among many large organisations hoping to attract top talent or ehance team based performance, escape room-style assessment could be the future of psychometrics!
For more information about the clueQuest Assessment Programme, please get in touch here.