Pokemon GO and the gamification of HR incentives
August 31, 2016
Pokemon Go is the latest in a long line of video games to motivate massive groups of people to take on a laborious, time-consuming task with seemingly no tangible benefits. During the World of Warcraft boom, players measured their cumulative playtime not in hours or days but in months. Clearly, games such as these have an ability to tap into what drives and motivates people in a way that few other activities can.
Pokemon Go has captured the unique ability to engage and excite tens of thousands of children, while also encouraging them to accomplish something productive: namely, they are getting outside, exploring, and expanding their worlds. Millions of grownups also are joining the Pokemon Go craze.
What can your business learn from Pokemon Go?
One major takeaway is that the digital transformation of your business will include many concepts borrowed from consumer technology—including games. That’s because your workers are immersed in the sensibility of consumer technology long before they ever walk in your door.
More importantly, the most profound aspects of digital transformation will revolve around how your people interact with your business technology, and how that technology improves the human aspects of your operations. Gamification can bring massive benefits to employee training and development, and it can also help structure incentives in many areas. Old-fashioned sales leaderboards are a great example of a gamified incentive. Now it’s relatively easy to build games that recognize employees’ individual contributions, their increasing knowledge of your company’s goals and offerings, and how quickly and completely they accomplish critical tasks.
Another lesson of Pokemon Go is that innovative new uses of technology don’t always require new technology. The essential elements of Pokemon Go—mobile phones and GPS mapping—have been widely available for some time. The game is simply a compelling combination of existing resources.
Digital transformation will have a profound impact on your people—and it should. When wisely implemented, your digital transformation has the potential to enrich your employees’ work experience, open new opportunities for learning and development, and make every member of your workforce feel like a valuable contributor to an important goal.
Read our Perspectives paper, “Why digital transformation depends on workforce transformation,” to learn how you can approach this critical task in ways that will generate the greatest benefit.
— Paul Boatman, Infor Behavioral Science Team lead