December 13, 2012
Gamification Leads to Knowledge Exchange in the Enterprise
By Michelle Amodio
Gamification, at first look, is kind of a funny word. This new technique of taking game-design thinking and bringing it to non-gaming places is opening up new avenues for workforce productivity and engaging customers. Surprisingly, or not so surprisingly, it delivers some serious results.
One area where gamification can be effective is in enterprise information management (EIM). It’s not so much that it just makes things more fun, but adding an element of “getting in the game,” so to speak, on a communicative level. On the consumer level, it’s paying off for companies like Verizon Wireless (News - Alert) who, upon “gamifying” their site, saw a 30 percent increase in their logins. For many companies, this can mean sizable revenue. On the EIM level, gamification simply offers a new way to improve upon knowledge exchange within the enterprise.
First and foremost, the target audience of gamification is people with needs and desires who will respond to stimuli. It is important to think of the people in these target audiences as ‘players’ in gamified applications, according to Gartner’s (News - Alert) special report on trends in gamification, which, upon their statistics, aren’t very promising.
However, Tom Jenkins at OpenText argues that, since EIM is about information power, gamification in the enterprise can only help its cause of data capture and analysis.
EIM initiatives seek to build efficient data management operations with capabilities for information creation, capture, distribution and consumption. The goal is to offer information that remains secure, easily accessible, meaningful, accurate and timely.
SAP (News - Alert) has been looking into gamification with the launch of a company-internal gamification community since the summer of 2010.
“Engaging users, improving data quality, creating more buzz, increase adoption, make training material stickier, reduce admin-workload, increase revenue, and many more reasons were named. In the end it’s not so easy to put the reason for looking at gamification in a big corporation like SAP into one catchy phrase,” wrote Mario Herger, senior innovation strategist at SAP Labs, about the motivation behind this trend in sharing and consuming information.
Not only are games like Farmville and Angry Birds popular, but they have spawned enormous online communities where the amount of time spent on community activities immeasurably exceeds time spent actually playing the game. For the enterprise, the idea of reaching countless users puts the word “reach” in a different perspective.
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Edited by Brooke Neuman