There is a trend to utilize gamification in HR by employing contests, games, and game-like features in the organizational culture. Employee health and benefits is a prime example of an area that organizations are applying the idea. A game can incentivize an employee to improve his or her wellness and lifestyle behaviors to reduce health care costs for the employer. This is being done through contests, quizzes, and online applications. The idea is that the gamification will improve workforce health and productivity as well as attract and retain healthy, motivated workers. In addition to the benefits within the organization, it will also give your company a competitive advantage and enhance the organizational image.
Gamification can be viewed as extrinsic motivation. This is when performance leads to an outcome independent of a person’s own desire to do something to attain a reward. Extrinsic motivation is a traditional approach to providing benefits and compensation to encourage employees to perform well. Intrinsic motivation is when a person is motivated to do something for personal enjoyment or benefit. Gamification can be an opportunity for workplace motivation to stem from intrinsic rewards when a person begins to experience personal satisfaction from achieving the goal.
Personal goals can arise from:
• An opportunity to learn a new skill
• Maximizing value
• Social responsibility
• Enjoyment and happiness
Transformational Game Design
Games are immersive and there are goals and objectives to reach in various stages. Each stage requires a different level or concept of inspiration. What will motivate people to act in certain ways at different times or situations?
Top Challenges Facing HR 2013
Can gamification be used to help address these issues?
• Finding the right talent
• Creating opportunities (placement/advancement)
• Managing labor and benefit costs (healthcare)
• Managing the social environments
There are barriers to companies adopting the idea of gamification. This can often be seen as just a game by leadership and not a priority. There also may be a lack of resources including the budget and personnel to implement the initiative. This lack of buy-in can often discourage HR from implementing these types of incentives. Without the leadership’s support, these incentives may never evolve. One of the key designs in gamification is that it is measurable. If there is guaranteed ROI, data, or measurements that show the actual effectiveness, it may be easier to gain backing.