Is Gamification the Key to Employee Engagement?


For decades employers around the globe have been delving through their troves of HR data to find the answer to that hardy perennial question: What is the secret to employee engagement?


Cognizant may have stumbled upon the answer, arguing that gamification could be the glue that will bind even the most intractable of employees – the ones who don’t so much go through the motions as trudge through them - to organisational values and objectives. Gamification, they maintain, is the key to dealing with employee disengagement, a phenomenon which, by some estimates, costs the US economy a staggering $550 billion.

The following infographic, courtesy of Cognizant, reflects increasing seriousness about the role of gamification in employee engagement. The infographic reveals how gamification can stimulate enthusiasm for important but dull tasks, generate performance-related feedback and support intelligent hiring. It also contains helpful insights on ways to tackle tricky challenges, such as compliance and training. In short, it shows how companies can get gamification right when using it as a tool to improve employee engagement. Check it out, along with a short summary of its key points below.

Key Points

  • Planning is critical. Gamification exercises can easily be undermined by poor planning leading to costly mistakes. Be clear about the outcomes that are required, for example the behaviour changes and skills that are sought.
  • Take a long term view. Variables such as culture, employee demographics and the level of technology integration will need to be accommodated.
  • Gamification is not about making games. It is about integrating gamification aspects into existing business processes to boost business outcomes.
  • Leverage behavioural analytics to target employees’ intrinsic motivations and use the information to guide the choice of gamification elements introduced.

On the surface, gamification makes sense. A “confluence of technologies” facilitates engagement through gamification; thanks to social and mobile platforms the workplace is highly collaborative; there is strong familiarity with gamification amongst both baby boomers and millennials; and behavioural measurements in real-time is now possible. Yet adopting gamification as a tool for increasing employee engagement will not be without its challenges: getting started is one thing; but how do you sustain the interest?

See Also: Gamification of the Workplace:Gimmick or Great Idea?

Do you think gamification is all it is cracked up to be? Add your voice to the conversation through the comments box below…







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