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Using Game Theory to Hire the Right Candidate

game theory

All organizations are on a constant lookout for quality candidates to join their team.  Talent acquisition is a time-consuming undertaking, and frequently a time-sensitive one.  To succeed in finding the right people, recruitment managers need to have a robust methodology to find quality candidates within the talent pool they have access to.  At Trindent, we add our company values to that methodology to help guide our candidate selection process.

Most companies have a set of values that represent their vision and culture. One of Trindent’s values, Character before Skill, is a short but powerful phrase to remember when looking to hire the right candidate.  For Trindent, this value comes from the view that skills can be taught, but the character is a nearly impossible variable to correct; and character is the defining factor in successfully seeing a project through.

Today’s job market is saturated with qualified candidates.  Once a job posting goes live, there’s a large volume of options to sort through, and the challenge becomes to pick the right candidates from a pile of resumes with similar skillsets.  This is where company values can become key, and a simplified version of game theory can assist with the decision-making process.

Using Game Theory to Hire Right

In economics, “game theory is the process of modeling the strategic interaction between two or more players in a situation containing set rules and outcomes”.

To visualize this theory in a recruiting context, imagine the very simple scenario of a two by two matrix. The categories are character and skill, and the options are some combination of “either they have it or they don’t”.

game theory graphic

There are 4 possible outcomes, but the decision comes down to 2 options if the following process of elimination is used:

  1. Option 4 is a poor candidate that should be removed from the decision right at the beginning.
  2. Option 1 is the ideal candidate and should always be the one selected.  If this candidate can be found, the decision tree should end here.  
  3. If selecting Option 1 isn’t possible, then the decision process moves on to Options 2 and 3. 

And that last step is where company values come into play.  Both options are missing a component but in the context of Trindent’s value of Character before Skill, Option 2 becomes the only desired option of the two options left.  

Play the Long Game

Integrating company values into the recruitment process will yield quality candidates who will become key to the financial success of an organization.  The reputation of a firm is one of its greatest assets, and it’s, therefore, a solid long-term strategy to invest in candidates with character traits that will represent your brand proudly.  

Trindent has been named as one of GROWTH 500’s “Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies” for seven consecutive years, a true testament of its success in hiring the right people.