Grow Up Not Old: What is Gamification and Why It’s For You


As in­dus­tries bat­tle in­no­v­a­tive ideas and tech­nolo­gies as well as ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence avail­able to us one area has re­cently stood out to us. Increasingly the term “Gamification” is be­ing thrown about by not just soft­ware de­vel­op­ers but also se­nior ex­ec­u­tives of multi-na­tional com­pa­nies.

Gamification is when game el­e­ments, as well as dig­i­tal game de­sign tech­niques, are ap­plied to non-game con­text prob­lems, which in­clude both busi­ness and so­cial im­pact chal­lenges.

When a sys­tem, ap­pli­ca­tion or process is gam­i­fied it is not just for the fun of it, the pur­pose of gam­i­fi­ca­tion is to solve a prob­lem; for ex­am­ple: get­ting em­ploy­ees more en­gaged with for­merly known dull tasks such as data en­try. If the gam­i­fi­ca­tion of a process or ac­tiv­ity solves a real world prob­lem, it will min­imise re­sis­tance to adopt­ing the tool or app.

Typically con­sumers have choices when it comes to us­ing a gam­i­fied sys­tem, process or web­site, un­like em­ploy­ees who have lim­ited to no choice in the de­ci­sion. When us­ing the gam­i­fied sys­tem be­comes a re­quire­ment, the plea­sure de­rived from said ac­tiv­ity quickly turns into an ad­di­tional neg­a­tive stress. In or­der to avoid this po­ten­tial prob­lem, com­pa­nies who in­tend to use gam­i­fi­ca­tion for its own em­ploy­ees, need to make the process or ap­pli­ca­tion em­ployee ori­en­tated.

There are a num­ber of pos­i­tive out­comes that can re­sult from the use of gam­i­fi­ca­tion. In con­trast to so­cial net­works (that dis­play only the in­for­ma­tion in­di­vid­u­als choose to make pub­lic) gam­i­fi­ca­tion re­flects the ac­tual achieve­ments of in­di­vid­u­als or teams within an or­gan­i­sa­tion in real-time. This data is more valu­able and use­ful than any per­for­mance feed­back that to­day’s met­rics dis­play. Gamification has the po­ten­tial to in­crease trans­parency dur­ing processes such as se­lect­ing which em­ployee gets pro­moted, laid off or even how to strate­gi­cally al­lo­cate bud­get. The key to re­mem­ber is that when you ap­ply gam­i­fi­ca­tion to a process or ap­pli­ca­tion it has to be func­tional al­ready. Gamification does not make bad ap­pli­ca­tions bet­ter.

Discover Software


David Burkett

Growth en­thu­si­ast and res­i­dent pom

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