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Gamification: Is it just hype or do we really need it?

Gamification: Is it just hype or do we really need it?

[fa icon="calendar"] Jun 24, 2014 11:46:30 AM / by Briana Songer

Briana Songer

By 2025, 75% of the global work force will be made up of Millennials.
That's quite a large number. Typically born between 1983-2003, most Millennials grew up in a technology savvy environment. They have shorter attention spans, demand to be rewarded and recognized, plus they want diversity and work with other cultures. Most know how to use social media in communicating about their favorite companies, products and experiences. This generation challenges the traditional company models and expectations, causing companies to take a good, hard look at how they can accompany this generation.

According to Gartner Inc., the video game market place is supposed to see a growth of 18.3% in 2014, reaching $128 billion by 2017. Due to the technology savvy environment, Millennials are hardwired to love the rush of winning an award, beating a goal etc. The addictive nature of the gaming concept (feeling of recognition, success etc) is the boost in the hormone Dopamine, giving a momentary ''high'' that makes one feel good about an achievement. The more rewards that are achieved, the more Dopamine gets released. When you add recognition into the equation, the person is continually motivated.

We all know that the workplace is not a natural ''gaming'' environment. Yet those repetitive, boring tasks that we do have the option to be ''gamified'', a tool that has been proven as a powerful strategy to help motivate and encourage the workforce. The goal is to attain behavioral change, and game mechanics (as mentioned earlier) has the power to do this. People who are motivated are more likely to achieve their goals and help innovate the workforce with ideas and best practices.

''Gamification'' of the workplace drives participation with well-timed acknowledgments and rewards for great performance that can go a long way. It can also help break up a monotonous day. Data-driven techniques are applied to the non-game activities to help motivate actions. This gamified process creates opportunities for workers that help create both self-competition and with others to engage and help them focus on different areas to improve.

Gamification elements

  • Badges: Build reputation, skills and contributions
  • Level-up: Help establish a sense of progress
  • Scores: Help workers keep track of their accomplishments
  • Leaderboards: Transparency and ranking. This helps drive performance and competition

Is it all just hype?

While the success of Gamification has been a popular trend, many worry that attempts to implement Gamification miss the mark. Poorly designed applications cause efforts to fail. While it's true that a new concept needs to be implemented thoughtfully and carefully, Gamification is here to stay, here to inspire and change behavior. Implementation must have clear purpose and objectives that a company must stay focused on. When successfully implemented, the potential is huge.

Topics: gamification

Briana Songer

Written by Briana Songer

Marketing Director at PlayVox

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