Does Employee Gamification Live Up to the Hype?

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Does Employee Gamification Live Up to the Hype?

As a Human Resources professional or Sales manager, you’re likely familiar with the concept of gamification, even if you haven’t incorporated it at your company. This business approach takes game elements and applies them to work situations to help motivate employees and attain company goals through teamwork, competition and employee engagement.

The psychological components of gamification make it a powerful tool for businesses. After all, learning and engaging through games is an ingrained skill. People participate in game play from childhood and this continues as they grow, facilitating learning and development. Additionally, game play triggers positive emotions, like excitement, anticipation and happiness. This enhances its use as a motivational tool. Challenges, rewards and measurable results encourage participation and offer the recognition most people crave for a job well done. Gamification incorporates all of these elements.

Benefits of Gamification

You know that employee engagement is essential to maintaining top talent. Engaged employees are happier in their jobs, which means they are likely to stay in place longer and therefore help your business avoid fast turnover. Unfortunately, most employees report a lack of engagement at work. In 2015, a Gallop poll reported that less than one-third of workers in the U.S. are fully engaged.

Gamification can help tackle this problem by encouraging employees to become more involved and, hence, more invested at work. These feelings inspire loyalty among your workers, enhancing employee retention rates. Gamification can also help with on-boarding new employees and training both new and existing staff, making the experience more enjoyable for all.

Employees appreciate the recognition and positive feedback for good work. The great news is that gamification provides this type of validation, right away and on an ongoing basis, which works to incentivize your team.

The gamification approach also relies on the competitive nature that most people share. This is especially prevalent in sales and marketing, as well as other industries where competition is an asset. Professions that require creativity and designing can also benefit, and any goal-oriented job is suited to gamification, as well.

Gamification is built on what’s already in place. In business, it simply applies basic game mechanics to job tasks, work processes and goals to motivate and engage your employees as they perform these job duties. This makes it a cost-effective method of rewarding and incentivizing your workers.

Potential Drawbacks in the Overuse of Employee Gamification

It’s easy to overdo it with game play, which can alienate your workforce rather than engage them. Ensure — don’t assume — that what you’re offering your employees has value for them. It must remain appealing and novel, or your workers will stop playing.

You should also make sure your employees enjoy the experience so that they engage naturally. Mandating participation is counter-productive, so don’t force employees to take part. And don’t use it for everything. Some work doesn’t need a game aspect to make it meaningful and fulfilling. Overall, stick with common sense and authenticity to avoid the potential pitfalls of too much gamification.

Making Gamification Work for Your Business

Gamification isn’t a gimmick or a magic solution for businesses, nor is it effective in every industry or working environment. But, when it’s well-crafted and applied properly, it can be a powerful tool with numerous advantages and measurable results. To design a gamification system that truly motivates and rewards employees and avoids the potential pitfalls, consider reaching out to the professionals at CoreCentive.