The term "gamification" is the use of game elements in a non-gaming context to drive user engagement, loyalty and motivate the desired action. Common examples include customer loyalty, e-learning, and performance management. Use of gamification technology is known to help employees feel more engaged at work.
Autonomy: Employees who use gamified training modules have control over their own success. They can learn and engage with other employees at their own pace.
Purpose: Many employees will complete training for both intrinsic and extrinsic motivations. Some people want to learn in order to do their jobs better while others may need badges, certificates, or monetary rewards for their training.
Who uses it?
Gamification can be useful for any team with measurable goals and the need to track and report on progress and deliverables. Whatever form, these are the teams that most often find a use for gamification software:
HR. Many HR departments are using gamification for tasks, like recruiting. Introducing gamified elements to recruits can send a message to potential job candidates that your team is invested in them. It also helps provide insights into their behaviors and values.
Sales. Sales teams often run on a natural sense of competition for the best deals or the highest sales. Gamification software can help concentrate that competitive nature into key sales enablement tasks. Documenting tasks, scheduling appointments, and statements of work can all be gamified to improve overall customer satisfaction and sales revenue.
A Framework for Gamification: The 6 D's
Employees should feel a sense of achievement every time they finish their job and improve the productivity of the organization. One of the most common approaches to gamification is the Six D’s framework.
Step 1: Define business objectives. Be clear about the goals and objectives for your business. What do you want to achieve through the gamification process? Some businesses aim for revenue maximization and profitability, while others seek more exposure and increased social media visibility. Taking the time to define your objectives will set you up for success. Step 2: Delineate target behaviors. The next step involves precisely describing the type of behavior that is expected of the players. There are certain characteristic behaviors that would be the most beneficial for the business and the objective that is supposed to be attained. For example, sharing on social media, posting comments, inviting other people to join, etc. Once these behaviors have been identified, the most important ones should be given more weight and their completion should be marked by a level up in the game or the activity.
Step 3: Describe your players. Who will be involved? Is the activity for the younger or elderly people? What motivates the people who will play the game? Are they competitive or do they care more about exploring and socializing? Know your audience to customize the user profiles. Step 4: Devise activity loops. Keep the players motivated to continue playing. The loops ensure that the players make progress in the game the longer they play. The sense of accomplishment that is achieved with progression loops will keep the players interested. Step 5: Don’t forget the fun. During the process implementation, it is likely that all the elements that make games fun might get pushed aside. Will the players voluntarily play the game? Ultimately, the more fun that the players have, the more successful the game will be so remember to keep it fun! Step 6: Deploy the appropriate tools. How will the ability of the players be measured? Do you have the data you need to make informed decisions? The experience of the players should also be considered. Tools like the Problem Based Learning (PBL) systems, achievements, avatars, etc., can be deployed which should be in tandem with the steps previously discussed.
Source: Werbach and Hunter in 2012 (framework is explained in detail in their book) "For the Win: How Game Thinking Can Revolutionize Your Business"