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How Gamification is Driving Business

It’s time to get serious about games. In the sense that a throat lozenge is not really candy, gamification is not really about games. It’s about serious, real world outcomes that are achieved by sweetening the deal (so to speak) for employees. In an article for B2C, Heather MacLean breaks down the economic and social payoffs of gamification, with an eye toward its positive impacts on the business community:

The U.S. Entertainment Software Association indicates that the video game industry is one of the fastest growing sectors in the U.S. economy. In fact, according to Price Waterhouse Coopers, the North American video game market will continue growing by approximately five percent annually through 2015.

Recruiting & Relations

MacLean points to two categories that are contributing to the overall trend of businesses using gamification. The first is recruitment, with gamification going beyond employee motivation or enhanced on the job performance. A study by CEB finds that gamification can help a company attract new and diverse talent, project an image of innovation, provide insight within the business, and improve the overall quality of the recruiting process.

Additionally, gamification helps businesses like Salesforce track performance so they can recognize employees who go above and beyond. It can be used to track the performance of athletes or everyday fitness buffs. And gamification has the potential to keep remotely engaged employees from building barriers with each other and the business.

Acquisition & Retention

Another important function of gamification is its propensity for customer acquisition and retention. Gamification is popping up everywhere. In fact, you may not realize you’re interacting with a gamified environment, such as receiving a coupon by way of using Foursquare to check into a restaurant. Similarly, a business could use gamification to help customers find parking close to their store. Like a throat lozenge, the consumer or team member gets a pleasant experience while getting a dose of what they need to become a motivated employee or regular customer.

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About Eric Anderson

Eric Anderson is a staff writer for CAI's Accelerating IT Success. He is an intern at Computer Aid Inc., pursuing his master's degree in communications at Penn State University.

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