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Are You Ready to Gamify Your Workforce?

Over the last decade, Human Resources professionals have discovered the power of the Cloud to manage their programs and workflow effectively and efficiently.

However, encouraging adoption by staff is sometimes a hurdle. Getting employees and recruits to actually use new programs can be a challenge, with utilization rates as low as 50% or less in some cases.  

This challenge often gets in the way of utilizing cloud applications to save money and improve workforce efficiency.

To justify the investment, HR departments must find ways to increase user adoption.

Kris Duggan, CEO of Badgeville suggests that utilizing a Gamification approach to solving this challenge.

Duggan argues “Gamification applies behavior-motivating techniques from traditional and social games to non-game environments. Expanding far beyond “points, badges and leaderboards,” an effective gamification program actually looks more like a loyalty program supercharged to help achieve business goals.

For HR, gamification can be applied in multiple ways to encourage adoption and help companies get the most from their technology investments.”

Here are some of the ways Duggan says gamification can work for the HR Leader:

  • Talent Management: Gamification can be implemented in all aspects of the hiring process, from the application process to the start date, to increase onboarding efficiency. HR teams can also implement gamification to reward top recruiters and incentivize employees to refer top candidates. For example, an employee could earn “Referrer of the Year” status within the company’s intranet portal and CRM system.
  • Corporate Culture & Retention: Once the employee is hired, retention becomes paramount. Gamification can promote a positive company culture, rewarding employees for cross-departmental collaboration or company-wide volunteer programs. A gamified platform can be used to track available opportunities, make these transparent to the employee, and provide a history of all employee engagement in the programs.
  • Learning & Training: Motivating employees to complete training programs within an allotted time, especially if it doesn’t relate directly to their day-to-day operations, can be a challenge. Adding a gamified experience to onboarding and enablement programs can increase information retention and speed program completion time. In fact, Deloitte reduced completion time for programs in its Leadership Academy by 50% by adding a gamified experience. Companies like Saba are also heavily investing in gamification to spur corporate education programs, helping HR managers increase efficiency of all required and optional employee training programs.
  • Benefits & Expense Management: Similar to training, the completion of benefits management paperwork can be gamified to motivate timely and accurate results. Providing a scalable, gamified benefits management program reduces HR expenses and overhead, and results in a happier workforce. Meanwhile, the ability to correctly report employee travel, entertainment and related business expenses can also be gamified through a system like Expensify, to encourage employees to submit reports on time and accurately. Employees can even compete for the title of being the best expense reporter.
  • Performance Management: By using gamification, HR teams can create an ongoing rewards program and even a mission-based career path that shows what steps an employee must take to level up in the organization. The program can focus on rewards, with other employees able to assign points and recognition to their fellow team members who helped them across the organization. By gamifying performance management and making steps to promotions, bonuses and organizational status more transparent, employees will more efficiently complete these steps, resulting in a more collaborative and productive workforce. Companies like SAP SuccessFactors highly value gamification as a key technique to improve employee performance and satisfaction.

Today’s HR executive knows that success in these five areas is key to growth of their company. Gamification gives HR executives and their teams the ability to build stickier, more engaging user experiences on top of existing HR, HCM, ERP, LMS and talent management systems to motivate desired employee behaviors and maximize the value of these software investments.

Kris Duggan can be reached through


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