Lack of engagement in the workplace can seriously affect business transformations – research shows 70% fail because of it. This is something that businesses can’t afford in this age of rapid digital transformation.
This problem with engagement is not a new one, but it is an increasingly important one. For decades issues such as lack of feedback and fuzzy goals have been complained about, and it’s these things that end up killing the commitment of employees.
This is where gamification comes in, this form of digital motivation gives employees the instant gratification that we’ve grown accustomed to in this digital age. From it, employees know that what they’re doing is of important and matters to someone which is key for engagement to blossom.
What is Gamification?
Although it may give the impression of turning work into a game, that’s not what it is. Gamification plays on the psychology that drives human engagement – the drive that makes us improve and compete and get instantly rewarded. It’s the carrot on the stick that the rabbit keeps on chasing, only modified by technology to put that psychology to work in the business workplace.
Benefits of Gamification
The benefits that come with gamification can be massive. It was reported that in 2015 that 40% of Global 100 were already using it to help with company transitions. Below are some of the reasons why:
- Eliminates Favouritism – One of the biggest engagement killers is the idea that there are favourites in the business and they are more likely to get rewarded. Gamification eliminates this idea by allowing employees to see how they stack up against each other and how they are being rewarded for it. Their big wins will be tracked and recognised when they happen.
- Real-time Feedback – With Gamification annual goals that are often irrelevant or forgotten about no longer have to be worked towards. Instead, real-time, measurable, meaningful targets can be worked towards, with upper-level feedback provided if those targets are hit or missed.
Best Time to Use
Gamification can be applied to pretty much any situation where outputs can be easily measured, but the two key areas it can serve your company most is in training and mobility:
- Training – In companies training usually falls behind boring webinars, but with gamification, it can be made much more interactive and engaging. Examples of this can include pop quizzes given to employees and rewards for teammates that adhere to workplace policies.
- Mobility – As many managers no longer have direct sight to employees in the office environment anymore, gamification offers them a chance to easily communicate, track and reward employees no matter where they work. Employees and their goals are now a constant and active presence on the digital screen.
Elements to be Careful of
Despite Gamification providing a range of benefits it can also present some elements to be careful of, below are some of the reasons why:
- Role Type – Gamification is perfect for most roles where performance can be counted but many people work in areas where this isn’t the case – such as those that write or counsel. For people in areas such as these workarounds are achievable – you just have to think of another gamification process that will work, an example of this could be customer satisfaction or article engagement, for instance, numbers associated with quality rather than simple output.
- Stress – Having to constantly perform and push yourself at work can cause employees to grow tired and even burn out in some cases. We all need time to zone out sometimes and gather our thoughts, but the constant transparency that comes with gamification can often feel like a violation.
Finding the right balance between keeping your employees engaged but not stressed or overwhelmed is the key with Gamification. Despite how useful it is, Gamification is just a tool at the end of the day, and engagement still requires strong human leadership and inspiration. Making it part of a larger digital and business strategy is the best way to make waves with it.