- Jobs are all about real life, not the virtual world – it’s not a game.
- You may need to go further than your local park to find the perfect recruit – unless you want to find an Oddish or employ a groundsman.
- In Pokémon Go the objective is “you gotta catch ‘em all” but recruiting is about quality over quantity – nobody wants to be Ash Ketchum with more Tauros than he knows what to do with.
- Catching a rare Pokémon is often motivated by bragging rights, but recruitment is all about the quiet satisfaction of finding the right man or woman for the job.
- In Pokémon Go, catching a rare and powerful Pokémon is often a great way to guarantee success. In real life, however, recruiting is best when aimed at building up an individual and their skill set.
- Each player can catch a Pokémon when it appears in Pokémon Go, but in recruiting, an individual can only go to one firm.
- Pokémon Go is all about travelling to pursue pocket monsters, but in recruitment the perfect candidate might be right before your eyes if you just put down your mobile telephone, stop and scrutinise properly.
- In Pokémon Go, interaction with individual Pokemon is generally kept to a minimum, as though they are simply part of a collection like stamps in an album, but in recruitment, candidates are all individuals with special skills and talents who deserve attention.
- Battling your Pokémon may be part and parcel of the Go game, but getting your job hopefuls to duel at dawn is generally not the best way to decide who gets the job.
- Pokémon have very specific strengths and weaknesses but human beings are much more versatile and adaptable.
- In Pokémon Go, players are tethered to their mobile telephones, but in real life good recruiters must demonstrate social skills in person too.
- Recruitment is not a numbers game – even if you “catch ‘em all” if you haven’t satisfied your client, you haven’t won the game.
- In Pokémon Go, when the app is closed, effectively nothing is happening, but in recruitment the process is always ongoing to fill posts.
- Having the app open drains a player’s battery, but recruiters are tireless in their efforts to place candidates.
- Recruiters don’t need signal or GPS, their instinct and professional experience override technology to get the job done.
So, is Pokémon Go exactly like recruitment or is that suggestion just plain wrong?
Take a quick browse online and you will see that opinion in the industry is divided, with some agencies touting the global game-play phenomenon as the perfect model for personnel while others pooh-pooh the very idea.
My feeling is that there should always be a more in-depth, considered view on capturing talent. If only finding top candidates were as easy as a walk in the park, armed with nothing but your mobile telephone and an app. Yet any success story which has taken the world by storm like Pokémon Go surely deserves further scrutiny.
Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, like a Lairon or a Geodude, you know players use their mobile’s GPS to to locate, capture, fight and train the cartoon creatures, which appear on the screen as if they were in the same real-world location as the player.
Let’s be honest, while it’s always worth going the extra mile to find the right recruit for the perfect post, you’re unlikely to find a great applicant foraging in the forest, unless you’re looking for a lumberjack. The same goes for rivers – great for water Pokémon, but not the natural environment for the best property market personnel. And we’ve all read the horror stories about Pokémon Go hunters stumbling across dead bodies or dicing with death on train tracks in pursuit of the virtual pocket monsters.
That’s the big flaw with the Pokémon Go as a recruitment model. The basis of the game is that you “gotta catch ‘em all” and we’re all about quality not quantity. While our team are fearless in the pursuit of excellence, the subtle art of selection is our key to success.
Candidates who can do more than utter their own name like a Pikachu and fight with other job hopefuls will always be the ones most in demand.
But there are some valuable lessons to be learned from Nintendo’s world-beating baby and its spin-offs. Not least that one great idea, courtesy of creator and gaming genius Satoshi Tajiri, can turn a childhood hobby into a global franchise, still delivering after 25 years.
He was certainly a stellar signing for the Japanese electronics and software company – their very own Venusaur.
Searching for your business’ own fully-evolved Charizard or Blastoise is all very well, but finding the rarest Pokémon – like personnel – takes time and resources.
It may well be worth it, but the best recruiters, like the top Pokémon trainers, know that talent can also be nurtured and developed, and taking a base pocket monster like a Charmander and teaching a set of winning moves before using it effectively in specific situations is no different from spotting a skill-set in a rookie which can be developed rapidly.
The ability to strategise is also critical in both the virtual and the real worlds. It might seem like common sense to pitch your water Pokémon against similar aquatic animals, but every Go game player knows the way to win at the water gym is to unleash your leaf or electric pocket monsters with some surprise moves.
FUN FACT: The protagonist of the English translation of the Pokémon anime, Ash Ketchum, shares the name Satoshi with Pokémon’s creator Satoshi Tajiri, in the original Japanese form of the show.