What is the simulation recruitment method?

Méthode de recrutement par simulation (MRS)


The simulation-based recruitment method, also known as SRM, makes it possible to broaden the search for candidates and to test them in a concrete manner. Rather than relying on CV analysis, it focuses on the abilities required for the position offered.

If, like many recruiters, you’ve already hired an ideal-looking candidate who, in the end, didn’t measure up, this method may well interest you!

We explain it all to you! 

Recruitment by simulation: definition of a proven method

Created in 1995 by a director of Pôle Emploi, the simulation recruitment method is still little known despite its age. Its objective is simple: the recruiter leaves aside the sacrosanct CV and focuses solely on the skills or soft skills of the candidates. Thus, this recruitment method is intended to be as objective as possible with the implementation of practical exercises that allow the candidates to be tested in real situations. This method has proven itself over the past 20 years, especially for (highly) technical positions.

💡 The SRM is perfectly suited to professions where diplomas or training are of little importance. It can also be used to recruit occupations that are short of candidates or to deal with volume recruitment. 

The benefits of SRM for a company

The simulation recruitment method offers several advantages to companies. It allows, for example:

To give everyone a chance to prove themselves;
Broaden your search for candidates;
To better identify the potential of candidates;
To recruit without taking into account discriminating factors (age, gender, origin, place of residence, etc.); 
Find the most competent person for the position in question based on their experience and abilities;
To process more quickly and efficiently volume recruitments; 
To open the door to self-taught people and atypical profiles.

The main steps of simulation-based recruitment

1. Analyze the position

As with any recruitment, it is essential to start by studying the position to be filled. After defining the tasks of the job, you can list the technical skills, as well as the behavioral skills required to perform the job properly. The goal is to write a job offer that is not too restrictive, so as not to turn away people who do not correspond 100% to the profile sought. 

2. Create recruitment tests or exercises

Now it’s time to come up with exercises and tests that will allow you to judge the candidates’ real abilities. Ideally, you should create an exercise that is as close as possible to one or more tasks related to the position to be filled. It should reflect the working conditions in which the candidate will be immersed to be as realistic as possible. 

👉 Feel free to write a clear and precise instruction sheet that you will give to each candidate. These exercises can be done alone or in a group, in order to measure the candidates’ ability to work as a team. 

👉 Offer simple exercises with little difficulty that showcase candidates’ abilities. This type of test can be stressful for some.

👉 You could also offer a personality test that will allow you to know a little more about the behavioral skills of the candidates in the running. There are many tools that allow you to measure soft skills more efficiently and save time in processing applications such as  Central TestAssessFirst, Goshaba.

3. Evaluate the candidates

You will then proceed to evaluate the candidates according to a scoring grid that you will have previously created. You can evaluate, for example: 

  • Coping skills; 
  • Autonomy;
  • Reactivity;
  • Teamwork;
  • Or any other criterion that you consider essential for the position to be filled.

All of these skills can be difficult to detect in a simple job interview. Therefore, tests and exercises lend themselves perfectly to this process. At the end of this stage, you can select candidates who have passed the tests and have the skills you are looking for. 

4. Do the motivation interview

To complete this simulation recruitment process, you only have to conduct classic interviews. This time, you focus on the motivations and personality of the selected candidates. This will allow you to get to know them better and ensure that they will fit in with your company. 

💡 This method of recruitment could be summed up as: “What matters is what you can do”! 

As you can see, the SRM was developed to enhance the skills of candidates to demonstrate their ability to perform the job in question through concrete exercises. Our advice: if you don’t want to follow this method to the letter, you can use it as inspiration for hiring new recruits.

⚠️ However, this technique requires a trained HR department and a lot of investment from the employer. Indeed, as seen above, it will be necessary to analyze the position, create the tests, evaluate the candidates and interview them.

You can also opt for a recruitment software like Jobaffinity to save time and manage your applications.

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