Enterprise Gamification:
the ultimate guide

Human beings typically play games throughout their lives: as a matter of fact, they learn the letters of the alphabet and the first words, such as numbers and colours, through play.

Over time, games have changed through the adoption of new technology: boardgames and outdoor activities have been replaced by video games and gaming consoles such as Playstation and Xbox. The principle, however, is always the same: entertainment.

In recent years, researchers and designers have wondered if it is possible to apply gaming principles to motivate and involve people in non-recreational contexts. This is how gamification was born: certain elements of gaming, with a particular focus on their mechanics and dynamics, are now used to involve people in non-play activities.

In this guide to enterprise gamification, we would like to present a complete picture of the subject, so that you will be able to make use of all its tools allowing you to make the most of it. In particular, we will consider:

What is gamification?

The term “gamification” has been in use since 2003 to refer to a methodology aimed at influencing people’s behaviour, both online and offline.

In the corporate environment, gamification applies rules and interaction mechanics, which are typical of the gaming world, in order to motivate customers, employees and collaborators who need to achieve specified goals.

Gaming dynamics and mechanics

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Different types of players

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Motivation and awards

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Gaming dynamics and mechanics

The dynamics are the most conceptual and abstract elements of this process,

dealing with the desires and needs of the users. These are considered to be the central elements in the design phase, and upon which the entire structure is built.

If dynamics are not at the centre of the design phase, it is impossible to produce an effective and harmonious gamified process. The key success factors are:

  • Constraints: the conceptual rules that each user must respect.
  • Emotions: the underlying basis for every experience undergone by individuals. Excitement lies at the heart of gamification, meaning that the users will be motivated to continue using a platform and to take certain actions.
  • Narration: in this context, it is just not a matter of narrating a story. Narration, in fact, is the medium through which the gamification strategy’s designer tries to capture the attention of the users, and thereby increase their involvement.
  • Progress: everything which determines the growth of the user during his experience.
  • Reports: an analysis of all social interactions which occur during the gaming experience. Social interactions are, together with emotions, a fundamental component for leveraging involvement and effective implementation of a gamification strategy.

Once we have determined the dynamics which an enterprise gamification strategy must provide internally, the design phase must then consider the progress of the user within the gamified experience.

Mechanics are those elements that, when combined, make the mechanism work on a practical level, be it an enterprise gamification platform or corporate training initiatives.

whappy strategia gamification business

The most common game mechanics include:

  • Points: they are assigned to the user when he has successfully completed a task or action.
  • Levels: it is a means of classifying users according to the score they obtained, and very often it reflects real contexts such as work, school and the social environment, where people are divided into hierarchically ordered classes.
  • Challenges: these are missions which users can undertake within the game.
  • Badges: they mark the completion of goals, and progress within the game.
  • Leaderboards: they are intended to make comparisons easier by ranking users according to their score

In other words, it is a method to achieve results in an engaging and enjoyable way; it reduces the psychological pressure given by deadlines, tasks and goals which need to be met.

All activities, even those that are less engaging and more competitive – which can be stressful for the staff- can become a source of personal gratification through the correct application of gamification concepts.

Clearly, if it is applied to a business environment, gamification should not be primarily focused on performance or monitoring, as these will occur as a direct consequences of the employees’ understanding, of them being appreciated and of the careful planning of their own path of professional development.

Gamification studies human behaviour and investigates how companies are able to modify it, thereby inducing individuals to perform certain actions rather than others.

One of the greatest risks with gamification is to design the game around the available features, rather than first thinking about the user and the behaviour that must be encouraged (or discouraged).

Good gamification design must focus on the user and not on the mechanics. While designing the game’s mechanics and dynamics, it is necessary to always take into consideration the user’s psychology.

In this sense, it is essential to understand the users’ motivation in their use of a platform. Once the motivation is understood, it will be possible to establish a system of rewards and incentives suited to the type of user.

Types of players

One of the first considerations we need to take into account is that we are all different: this means that what motivates one person could have the opposite effect on another.

The following is a very useful template for identifying different types of social behaviour.

The graph shows the most common behaviour patterns among players. In social gaming, as well as in social media, it is possible to find 4 types of players:

Masters of their own destiny: they play with the aim of moving up the levels and progressing within the game. They are always ready to perform any action in order to have their success recognised and to increase their prestige. For them, exploration is only necessary as a means of finding new sources of wealth or ways of achieving points. They believe socialising is a relaxing way to find out what other players know about the game, so that they can accumulate points and become richer. Masters of their own destiny are involved in the game and really enjoy this kind of environment. In fact, they will fully immerse themselves in this world and won’t be able to resist it; sharing it with other people is a way of adding a bit of authenticity and competition. They are proud of their status in the hierarchy of levels and generally want to be successful as quickly a possible.

Competitive players: they have only one goal in mind, that is to be better than their opponent. This type of participant competes with other players to succeed. They don’t mind being feared or detested, their only concern is to beat other players. For competitive players, getting points is necessary to become powerful; exploration is generally necessary to discover new ways of becoming better than the other players. They take advantage of other players’ weaknesses, they are proud of their reputation and their fighting skills.

Explorers: they try to find out as much as possible about the virtual world. They prefer to spend time experiencing the game and discovering new features. In general, they want to gain knowledge in order to reveal all the secrets which the users can experience. Socialising can be instructive as they see it as a source of new ideas, but usually explorers already know most of the information provided by the other players. These players enjoy themselves when they discover new things. Explorers want game activities to be surprising. Other players add value to the game, but are not essential components of it. They see earning points all the time as a useless preoccupation, they prefer open challenges. Most explorers could easily accumulate enough points to reach the top, but this one-dimensional behaviour belongs to short-sighted people. Explorers are proud of their knowledge of the game, and they are especially pleased when new players ask them information.

Socialisers: they consider the game as a means of finding new contacts. For this type of player, establishing relationships is the main point of the whole experience. In fact, they like to identify themselves with other people, sympathise, joke, have fun and listen. Also watching other people play can be gratifying, as they like to watch them grow as individuals over time. For social players, some exploration may be necessary to understand what everyone is talking about; points may be required to gain access to communicate at higher levels, as well as to gain a certain status in the community. The only thing that satisfies them is meeting new people to create beautiful lasting relationships.

Think of this as a useful starting point for thinking strategically about what motivates your players, then you can plan experiences to delight and engage your target audience or your staff.

This is just a template, so you may need to modify it according to your target audience or the corporate goals you wish to pursue through gamification.

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Motivation and awards

Motivation is closely related to your chosen reward system and it is divided into two main categories: extrinsic motivation and intrinsic motivation.

  • Extrinsic motivation derives from external factors

    It occurs when a person engages in an activity for purposes that are extrinsic to the activity itself (such as receiving praise and recognition), or to avoid unpleasant situations (such as a reproach or creating a bad impression). Prizes which stimulate extrinsic motivation are salaries, badges and rankings.

  • Intrinsic motivation derives from internal factors

    It occurs when a person engages in an activity because they find it stimulating and gratifying in itself, and gain satisfaction in feeling increasingly competent. Intrinsic motivation is based on curiosity, which is activated when an individual encounters strange, surprising or new environmental characteristics. In this situation, the person experiences uncertainty, conceptual conflict and feels the need to explore the environment in search of new information and solutions. Mastery, which is the need to feel more competent, is also important for intrinsic motivation. Personal achievements, social commitment, power, fun and skills are types of intrinsic prizes.

Many studies have shown that, if you force someone to do something, they will end up hating it. Therefore, the use of extrinsic incentives (for example points, badges, benefits, money, etc.) will decrease the intrinsic motivation of a person, and eventually lead to resentment of gamified behaviour (a negative reaction to the game).

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Enterprise gamification

Gamification techniques for companies allow employees, co-workers and customers to interact with business applications, processes and systems of an organisation in a fun and more engaging way.

If it is well structured, gamification has significant benefits within the company in terms of:

  • increase in employee motivation and productivity
  • greater transparency and better communication of business ideas and information
  • alignment of expectations and objectives of employees, stakeholders and customers, with management objectives
  • increase in employee involvement in corporate initiatives
  • subject conversion: from employees to company supporters
  • better learning environment and learning experiences.

Implementing a gamification strategy doesn’t just give rise to benefits: there will be problems you will have to face linked to the company’s structure and its corporate culture. It is no secret that human beings likes routine: changing your habits and mental patterns is one of the most important and complex challenges you will face.

Increase motivation and involvement with gamification

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Discover the best practices to optimise learning and training

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How to create a high-impact business training strategy

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Gamification for the newly hired

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An application simulation platform

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Why should you adopt a gamification strategy?

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How to increase motivation and involvement with a gamification strategy

A gamification strategy to increase employee engagement might consider encouraging employees to do the following:

  • use a software or a corporate platform;
  • join and follow company training courses;
  • improve customer care and nurturing activities;
  • visit specific pages on the company’s website (eg the company blog, a bulletin board…);
  • share company news on social networks;
  • follow the company on social networks;
  • participate in surveys;
  • participate in a competition (photos, texts or images);
  • comment on blogs and discussion forums;
  • download any type of company material.

Of course, these are just some of the actions that could justify the design and implementation of an enterprise gamification strategy.

Regardless of the action itself, managing rewards for the users is much more important.

If only monetary prizes are used, they could be associated with incentives that can be obtained through work activities: therefore, employees won’t connect them to personal satisfaction and gratification.

Incentives and rewarding initiatives must reflect and convey the idea of fun and involvement, which are the essential elements of any gamification strategy.

Remember not to limit incentives to extrinsic prizes such as points, badges and trophies: these are one-dimensional incentives.

Also consider virtuous behaviour which is driven by intrinsic rewards. Involving users in the gamification design is essential and should ensure the right balance between extrinsic and intrinsic rewards.

Companies that want to improve their internal training programmes are considering gamification as a way to increase commitment and friendly competition. The will to fail, try again and fail again is the essence of what makes learning a captivating activity.

Furthermore, in order to be able to assign extrinsic and intrinsic recognition, a correct enterprise gamification strategy must provide the necessary supporting tools to track and measure these activities, such as the number of satisfied customers, the level of training achieved, the correct use of company software etc.

The best practices to optimise learning

Gamification can be an effective approach to improve learning and training within the company. Thanks to its intrinsic characteristics, it is able to:

  • Stimulate friendly competition
  • Develop the sense of success
  • Provide an engaging experience for the users involved, leading to anticipated behavioural changes
  • Encourage users to progress through the content, motivate action
    and have an influence on behaviour

Gamification is configured as a win-win strategy, in which both employees and the company receive benefits.

Corporate learning from the employees’ point of view

The new generation of employees is called Millennials.

It is a generation that marks a break with the past: their lifestyle is based on mobile devices and networks. Therefore, the role of mobile devices, PCs and tablets is fundamental in aspects such as training and learning.

The medium and the way of conveying learning have changed: today, the focus is to offer learning solutions aimed at immersing and engaging the user; you can be sure that they will not abandon the activity.

This is fertile ground for gamification-based learning, which can be developed in a mobile format in order to adapt to the user’s needs. Moreover, it can be created with an engaging and dynamic design, leading to greater retention and percentage of use.

Learning from the corporate point of view

While employees have always been attracted by the idea of learning through gamification, companies have been more sceptical because they don’t consider it serious or professional.

However today, there are actually an increasing amount of studies that affirm that good gamification is able to create:

  • learning and training that have a high impact
  • faster application of what has been learned

How to create a high-impact business training strategy

The following examples show how gamification techniques can be used to create high-impact corporate training courses. Each of these solutions is aligned to meet specific learning objectives (serious learning) and it involves many of the current trends, including:

  • Learning portals.
  • Micro-learning.
  • Learning paths.
  • Social learning.

Gamification for the newly hired

The best time to involve and motivate a new employee is as soon as they join the company.

The last thing you want is to make them feel abandoned or disoriented.

In this phase, gamification offers an interesting solution: through learning portals and micro-learning, it is possible to provide new staff with an engaging induction experience and key information on the organisation.

This solution should be suitable for several devices (smartphones, tablets and desktops), so that employees can easily access the portal. A key element in this engaging journey is the gamified evaluation phase.

At the end of each phase, users will participate in a game that tests their knowledge about the organisation in a particular field. In other words, it is like an evaluation test at the end of a book’s chapter.

For each phase, it is possible to provide students with a different game.

In the end, employees must undertake a final evaluation, designed using gamification techniques.

In this way, the company manages to transmit all the basic information about its philosophy, structure and staff without becoming heavy and extremely boring. Actually, this is a dynamic, innovative and engaging solution.

whappy impatto gamification assunti

The impact of gamification on the newly hired

Using gamification in this field has led to excellent results. As a matter of fact, the newly staff felt they had a strong connection to the company, thanks to the use of the portal.

Secondly, gamification has made it possible to make boring issues concerning the company’s organisational structure more enjoyable.

By implementing this technique, employees acquire and retain more information about the organisation, compared to traditional learning sessions.

Again, gamification adds an element of variety (each level corresponds to a different game, which maintains their level of involvement), which entertains employees.

An application simulation platform

It is well known that it is easier to learn things by putting your skills to use, compared to a boring theoretical lesson.

“Do it yourself” is a great way of acquiring new skills and ensuring that they are quickly and permanently retained by the user: also in this case, gamification can be the most suitable business strategy.

Here is an example to explain the idea: imagine that you have to teach your employees the various applications offered by MS Office.

Through gamification, you can create a gamified application simulation where employees can view demos, try them and test themselves in real-world tasks.

This methodology leads users to think carefully and perform tasks that are measured through a scoring system.

In all the phases, the application offers suggestions and displays best practices, so that employees are able to remember them.

In addition, the platform offers the possibility of:

  • Allowing you to select what you want to learn
  • Following a clear, logical and ordered learning path
  • Checking your progress on the courses, the points collected and results
  • Sending questions to a tutor

The impact of the application simulation platform

Employees find this solution extremely useful because:

  • It allows them to explore the features of MS Office independently.
  • It challenges employees to give their best thanks to a scoring system
  • It provides suggestions and advice to employees who feel lost
  • It allows them to choose what they want to learn and not what is required to be learned.

Why, then, should you adopt a gamification strategy?

The objectives of Gamification are to reach higher levels of involvement, change behaviour and stimulate collaboration and innovation.

In this sense, the opportunities for companies are huge: gamification means more involved customers and facilitates the use of collaborative platforms which enable innovation and improve employees’ performance.

In their report, “Gamification 2020,” Gartner predicted that gamification, combined with other emerging trends and technologies, will have a significant impact on:

  1. Innovation
  2. Employee performance
  3. Globalisation of education
  4. Customer engagement
  5. Personal development

Furthermore, gamification is considered a key tool for:

  1. Accelerating feedback cycles
  2. Setting clear goals and games rules
  3. Creating an engaging narrative
  4. Encouraging the implementation of difficult but possible tasks.

If you want gamification to be effective, remember that it is essential to: capture and retain the attention of learners, involve the user in the learning process, entertain him and, finally, provide him with the teaching he needs.

The rules to follow for effective and sustainable enterprise gamification

Gamification has the potential to become an integral part of work, but for this to happen, it must be well-designed and implemented correctly. Considering how difficult it is to structure a successful game, it will not surprise you to learn that enterprise gamification is not an easy process to design. Here is some advice to avoid the most common problems.

1. Plan the gamification project before applying it

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2. Don’t use money as a motivation

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3. Make the game look professional

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4. Do not downgrade already existing programmes

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5. Never use the wrong motivation for your employees

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6. Don’t measure or give importance to weak behaviour

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1. Plan the gamification project before applying it

Gamification must be well-designed and structured before being applied.

Here are some points to consider in the first phase of the planning process:

  • Make sure your organisation’s goals are clear.

This is a particularly important step to take before undertaking further planning.

It is better to set your objectives in the initial phases; otherwise you risk losing the overall vision, the purpose of the whole activity.

  • Think carefully about your corporate culture.

What are the rewards that will ensure greater motivation? How can you build a good rewards programme which binds employees to your corporate culture?

  • Focus on the type of behaviour you are trying to encourage or discourage and, once you have identified it, work on the plan.

During this phase it is essential to identify the activities and triggers that affect the behaviour you want to change.

  • Periodically change the bonus system and make sure employees are engaged and don’t get bored with old incentives.
  • Don’t “play” with your employees. Companies must design game systems capable of improving people, which are not just incentive mechanisms aimed at increasing productivity.

2. Don’t use money as a motivation

Despite what many people think, rewarding employees with money is one of the worst ways to motivate them. Research carried out by Daniel Pink found that extrinsic rewards rarely work.

Introducing monetary rewards leads employees to think only of money and they will not focus on other motivations, such as the pride of doing their job well or the sense of union that develops when one feels part of a team.

Money has the power to change a situation: it is often demotivating, it kills creativity and creates unhealthy rivalries among employees.

Try to encourage your employees with intrinsically valuable rewards, such as their ability to demonstrate unique skills, overcome difficult challenges and achieve goals.

3. Make the game look professional

Just because gamification took its cue from game design technology, it does not mean it has to be a game or look like one.

Its basic concepts are clear: measurement of behaviour, precise goals and visible results (badges, etc.). This premise may appear quite simple but, actually, there are many options available.

When gamification is aimed at children, bright colours and original fonts can be successful. If you want to implement it in your company, you should produce a more serious adaptation.

The theme and design of the game should be consistent with the corporate style and its standards. Also, you need to make sure that the rewards systems are clearly communicated.

If an employee has earned a badge for being the community’s main contributor, let everyone know what they have done, over what period and (if possible) the value he has generated.

4. Do not downgrade existing programmes

When you introduce a new engagement programme, your employees will wonder in what ways it is superior to the one they already have.

This is particularly important when existing systems define one’s status, such as with job titles. Everyone knows that a senior manager has a higher position and more responsibilities than a junior manager.

If you intend to introduce a new system that allows a junior manager to “surpass” a senior manager, the programme must be specific.

A junior manager might be more experienced in a particular activity or have more exposure to a particular process. Make sure these considerations are clear to everyone, so that his new status is recognised and accepted when it comes to specific activities. Without a contextual explanation, other workers will not understand that the junior manager’s role is superior to that of a senior manager in certain situations.

Also consider removing money-based incentive programmes. A recognition system that focuses on talent and success will be more rewarding, and will probably lead to better results – of course, only if employees don’t consider it as a reduction in income.

If you delete an existing programme and replace it with a new one, you will surely trigger some negative reactions. It is better to introduce it gradually, as a complementary programme.

5. Never use the wrong motivation

People want to feel like they are making progress, but there are different ways to create this sense of achievement.

If you let employees see the different levels and the progress of their activities, they will have a clearer vision of the process and their progress, and will feel as if they are the real beneficiary of it.

However, there is a fine line between monitoring employees’ success and controlling it. If employees feel that you are constantly watching them, they may be discouraged from participating in the gamification programme. Some employees, especially those who have more skills or more creative and dynamic positions, expect to receive more social recognition.

With reference to the analysis of people’s behaviour when dealing with games, there are two particular profiles: competitors and collaborators.

Competitive employees want rankings and competitions. Cooperative employees aim to be victorious with a higher social status and to be more talented; they don’t seek competition and confrontation.

Try to understand the personalities of your employees. Then, find the right incentive systems to motivate those who engage with the enterprise gamification strategy.

6. Don’t measure or give importance to weak behaviour

How can you recognise the value added by employees who join a gamifcation programme?

Often, the answer is to define the basic daily activities that an employee carries out, and measure them.

It sounds pretty easy but there is a problem: in most cases, quality is more important than quantity.

Let’s take an example: rewarding employees for sending e-mails and making comments to blog posts may have an unexpected effect: you could soon find your business submerged by a high quantity, but with low quality content, which damages the credibility of your initiative and the company as a whole.

For this reason, any enterprise gamification strategy necessarily requires a mapping of users’ activities and, above all, a clear understanding of the value they can generate for the company.

This is the only way to define the activities to be carried out, and to identify the most suitable incentives for your team.

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Success stories of enterprise gamification

If you have come this far, you’ll have probably understood that gamification represents a valid and effective methodology for increasing involvement and learning among employees, and that it also improves their productivity. In order to help you understand how to achieve these goals, we have collected a number of successful case studies in which enterprise gamification strategies have been developed.

Recruitment of HR: the case of Unilever

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Retail management: the case of Bata

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The learning process: the case of Cisco

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Recruitment of human resources: the case of Unilever

Unilever, the Anglo-Dutch global consumer goods giant, used to struggle with its management of applications and interviewing of candidates using traditional methods, especially with regard to younger applicants.

In particular, Unilever aims to achieve the following objectives:

  • to succeed in engaging young talent from universities
  • to redefine the preselection phase in a more streamlined and effective way
  • to choose only the best profiles for the next selection stages

At the beginning of the process, candidates have to meet the “Leadership Standards”, which were drawn up by Unilever, which include:

  • The desire to win and to develop; competitive leadership;
  • Leadership aimed at achieving goals, focused on consumers and customers;
  • Fast decision-making skills, ability to take risks, active leadership;
  • Responsibility for results, performance-oriented leadership;
  • Capacity for self-development, and people-oriented leadership.

To combine these objectives with the potential characteristics of the candidates, the selection process was divided into three phases:

  1. The first phase consists in completing an application form on the Unilever platform, uploading your resumé or directly importing the LinkedIn profile. This passage allows Unilever to avoid recruitment events at universities. Such events provided little data, and it didn’t reflect people’s real potential.
  2. The second phase is oriented to the processing of the candidate’s application forms: the platform’s algorithm analyses and accepts the applications that are in line with the position to be filled.
  3. The most interesting part of the process is the third phase. By using an app on their smartphone, candidates have twenty minutes to complete 12 games that test their cognitive, social and emotional traits. These games use the most widely accredited methods for the study of psycho-attitudinal characteristics. It only takes 12 games to measure and evaluate people’s features, such as: attention, distraction rate, speed in planning and solving problems.

As we said before, gamification offers benefits to both the company and the user. In the case of Unilever, gamification allowed for:

  • the streamlining of the candidate pre-selection phase
  • an improvement in the quality of selected candidates
  • time saving for internal company recruiters.

At the same time, gamification has also brought benefits to users, who experienced:

  • Less pressure in the selection phase
  • Greater involvement in activities
  • Orientation feedback

Retail management: the case of Bata

One cannot deny that the retail sector is going through quite a stressful phase, which always happens when events lead to change and evolution.

This does not mean that retailers are destined to disappear; but, they have to evolve to offer what the market needs: services, competence and personal relationships.

Even if there is a wide spread of machines and technology, consumers still need someone to trust; a flesh and blood person, not a machine.

This is why salespeople are still very important today: they represent a point of reference for the consumer, someone they can ask for advice and to talk to.

Humanity and warmth: this is something e-commerce cannot offer.

The key word is “transformation”: there must be a development on two levels. Firstly, transformation must involve sales models, which means that the sellers approach in dealing with the customer must also change.

This makes us consider some important issues:

  • How can I succeed in developing a new source of motivation for my sales force?
  • How can I ensure salespeople have the required dynamism and energy?

The example of Bata Italia is enlightening.

To answer these questions, the managers of the famous footwear manufacturer have implemented a gamification app with the aim of increasing motivation and incentives among salespeople.

The app exploits gamification logic, and is perfectly configurable and customisable. Its aim is to transform Bata’s sales operations into a game.

By using the app, employees become involved in a motivating gaming experience, which is directly and fairly connected to the actual real world results obtained by each seller.

The declared intent of Bata Italia is to redevelop and motivate its sales network, by giving it new relational skills through the use of technology. The ultimate goal being to increase productivity.

Whappy has developed an app that includes an incentive system based on Key Performance Indicators: intermediate objectives that measure the implementation of the sales process.

KPIs (which used to be monitored by the company, but without the employees being aware of it) have become part of the entire retail sector and of their daily relationships with the individual seller.

The game is the starting point, then there are incentives and, finally, sales. Gratification, which is obtained through the recognition of objectives achieved, encourages the sales force to reach their main goal: the increase in sales.

The App also allows access to rapid and effective training courses, short e-learning sessions, including direct interaction with customers through social media.

Tests carried out in the field have revealed important results:

  • 85% of Italian salespeople adopted the app,
  • more than 18,000 posts were generated on social networks,
  • 6,500 videos and learning materials were downloaded,
  • more than 5,000 coupons were sent to customers,
  • productivity among app users increased by more than 12%

The learning process: the case of Cisco

We have seen it happen: even training can become more efficient if it is structured in order to take advantage of new technologies and the potential offered by digitisation.

So-called “e-learning” is capable of bringing numerous benefits:

  • Access to platforms at any time
  • Frequent and constant training
  • Increase in employee involvement and interaction

Keeping these benefits in mind, Cisco has decided to introduce a programme – Global Social Media Training – for its employees and collaborators to improve their skills on social media. The training programme includes 46 courses divided into 3 basic levels: Specialist, Strategist and Master. In addition, there are 4 sub-certifications for external communications, human resources, internal partner teams and sales.

The ludic element has been well designed and implemented: in fact, Cisco has included various challenges within the game to ensure a healthy amount of collaboration and competition, which are recognised through the certification systems.

Which was the result?

The gamified training programme was perceived as engaging and captivating. It resulted in more than 650 certified employees and 12,500 courses.

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The future of gamification

As for the future of gamification, we can say that people will use it to shape their skills and behaviour in order to become the person they want to be. Technology will open up new opportunities for gamification professionals. Augmented reality, virtual reality, head-mounted displays, machine learning, biologically integrated systems and game worlds have enormous potential.

The example of Gamification for use in human resources

As we have said before, companies use gamification for human resources as a means of teaching key business concepts (values, goals, personal development, coaching and recognition) to employees, taking advantage of the competitive and engaging nature of gamification.

Today, thanks to gamification, it is possible to link some topics to specific achievable objectives. While employees complete their learning path, they have the opportunity to see their performance statistics and levels.

Within this context, gamification will go even further: it will go from the use of gamification for learning to the use of learning to influence behaviour.

Gamification is popular now, but this is nothing compared to the level of popularity it will achieve in the near future. At the moment, gamification is seen as a solution to reduce disengagement; in the future, it will be used as a 360-degree business tool.

Some developers are integrating artificial intelligence into business software and are creating different solutions: from robots and chatbots aimed at helping you find things, to algorithms that will be the next team members -as a matter of fact, they can analyse data on a wider scale than humans can.

No one can predict what the future will be like and, by giving this guide, we are not aiming to predict future trends and developments. Our goal is to provide you with a complete picture of a strategy that is becoming increasingly important within companies.

Any hypothesis about future developments has the same incontrovertible foundation: technology will never stop evolving. In order to remain competitive in any business environment, companies need to keep up with new technological and social trends.

Gamification has the potential to help solve problems, ranging from individual behaviour to global issues. Don’t let your prejudice about gamification limit your goals.


Gamification is defined as a way of immersing employees in business processes and activities. It uses many elements of online games, such as reward and recognition systems and interactivity.

When it is well designed, gamification:

  • helps to map business goals,
  • stimulates motivation,
  • encourages participation
  • aims to achieve results.

The common thread linking all gamification activities is simple: the more engaging and interesting the activities are, the more people you can reach.

The essence of gamification lies in the involvement of people on an emotional level and in the incentive to achieve goals.
In order to motivate users, it is necessary to present challenges in a captivating and personalised way and to encourage employees whenever they unlock new levels, so as to keep involvement high and push them into achieving the best possible results.

Therefore, we can affirm that gamification can be seen as a method to change behaviour and a valid tool to encourage knowledge sharing and employee involvement within the company.

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