1_deloitteDeloitte‘s annual report on technology trends had an interesting section on Gamification this year, which means taking the essence of games – fun, play and passion – and applying it to real-world, non-game situations. In a business setting, that means designing solutions using gaming principles in everything from back-office tasks and training to sales management and career counseling, according to Deloitte.

Asian eMarketing wants to present you the key points of the report, starting with what‘s different in 2012:

  • Gamification applies game mechanics and dynamics to produce results that go far beyond simple entertainment. It embeds these principles into how people work, collaborate and transact business – a systemic change. This is distinguished from serious gaming, where a walled garden with a compelling gaming hook is used to educate, motivate or achieve a secondary outcome.
  • A number of serious gaming companies have created statistical studies and industry/function- specific repositories of rules and models, along with underlying technology platforms that can be reused across scenarios. This has led to moderate growth in the areas in which serious gaming is applied. It has also fostered effective approaches to help maintain the integrity of, and ongoing interest in, the game.
  • Effective design of game mechanics and dynamics are often predicated on models and research from these fields. In a sense, gamification is the industrialization of these academic concepts – shifting from research and theory to tactical business processes and front-line employees.

Technology implications

Future generations of enterprise systems are likely to have game mechanics embedded in their design. For now, however, most organizations are likely to layer their gamification strategies into established packages and custom solutions. A number of technical building blocks should be considered to realize gamification’s potential.

  • Enterprise Sytems: Almost every game mechanic is fueled by activities or events, such as knowing what a player is doing, being able to change the state of the game, or providing appropriate rewards or acknowledgements. The lack of openness of underlying packages and custom systems can be a constraint against driving external gamification elements (e.g., making activities visible, timely and with enough context for the game dynamics) or embedding gamification into the current platform.
  • Game Mechanics Platforms: A number of solutions have emerged in the past 12 months that provide plug-ins or third-party services for leaderboards, achievements and virtual currencies and rewards to help motivate and monitor employee engagement, compliance and performance – especially in areas such as education and learning, health and wellness, call center/customer care, and sales and marketing. These same mechanics can also be applied to customer-facing offerings to drive retention, loyalty and advocacy.
  • Social Business: Connectivity, collaboration and knowledge-sharing are key dimensions of gamification. Understanding how communities are connected in a social graph and how games can be linked to social computing and social media tools can affect the ability to meet the goals of the effort.
  • Mobility: Location-based services fueled by mobile devices allow advanced techniques, known as appointment dynamics, where specific actions or rewards are available only if a user is in a predetermined physical place at a specific time. More broadly, mobile channels can be natural candidates for the gamification of business processes, especially when anytime/anywhere, short-lived, meaningful touch-points are desirable.

Deloitte explains further that gamification is riding three waves: The first is the growing base of workers and customers raised under the influence of video games and consumer technology. The second is the meteoric expansion of mobile, social and cloud technologies across the business. The third is the ongoing efforts to improve business process execution and performance through technology. Gamification looks to embed game attributes into day-to-day business activities – interacting with the next generation in their native language, and tapping into an enthusiastic older generation that has embraced gaming. As the bridge to the postdigital era is being built, organizations are making big bets to take advantage of this transformation.

Source: www.deloitte.com/us/techtrends2012