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How technology makes gamification in the workplace work

July 15, 2020

How technology makes gamification in the workplace work
What is gamification? It’s a way of taking an ordinarily boring activity and turning it into a game. What’s the point of gamification? No, not SEO. It’s to try and make those boring activities fun—or, more accurately, make those boring activities less unbearable. OK, maybe that’s a bit harsh, but it’s true. Companies put employees through all types of tedious activities (compliance training, anyone?) typically for legal obligations, but many companies are using gamification to make work less unbearable too, rewarding, even. And that can definitely be a good thing.
 
Take collaboration, for instance. With the recent surge in remote work across the world, efficient collaboration is key to maximizing productivity. Collaboration tools abound, but who wants to take the time to learn how to use them? Aren’t good ol’ fashioned emails and meetings enough? In a word, no. And there are several solution providers who’ve created gamification options that integrate with these large-scale collaboration tools offered by the largest vendors.
 
Imagine getting rewards for following up on a project detail, or recognition for completing tasks on time. You might think such minor ego strokes don’t add up, but you’d be wrong. We humans have our egos, we need to be recognized and that’s why gamification works. But how does it work, you might ask. What sort of technology enables this fantastical new paradigm? Read on, dear reader. Read. On.
 
Ever heard of data storage?
No matter which way a company might implement gamification—gold star stickers, corporate bucks, raffle tickets, rubber ducks—they need a way to keep track of it all. And any company that thinks this through will store their gamification data on a secure server. Because let’s face it, notepads can get lost or ruined when someone accidentally spills coffee on them in the breakroom. Trust me. When it comes to important data, redundancy and security are a must. A hybrid or cloud solution would offer the most flexibility, and solid state drives (SSD) should be used for any on-prem data storage for maximum reliability.
 
What about processing power?
Now, doing anything meaningful with that data is going to require processing power. Whether a company hosts some or part of their gamification data on a local data server or creates proprietary software or licenses a plugin to work with collaboration software, it’s going to require more work for on-prem hardware. Our advice? Don’t go cheap—but don’t overspend. If that seems difficult, good. These decisions should be difficult because they’re important. Companies should always do detailed diligence when investing in hardware or solutions that will support them for years to come. Want our advice? Consult an expert.
 
Don’t forget UI/UX!
No gamification program can be successful if the audience doesn’t engage with the rewards and recognition process itself. That largely falls upon the user experience design. You have to make them care, and that’s not easy. UI/UX done right means research: surveys, interviews, alpha testing, beta testing, gamma testing! (Just kidding. Don’t do gamma testing unless you have access to lead.) But the user experience should not be an afterthought. Whether it’s a website or software solution, a gamification experience should be pleasing to operate and intuitive to use. Or at the very least, it should be something slightly less than unbearable.
 
For more information on integrated solutions that can power your customers gamification solutions, contact the experts at Ingram Micro.
 
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