Jun 18 18

SharePoint Gamification – Unlock Employee Engagement through Games

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Finding new and fun ways to motivate your employees can sometimes be a challenge. Your staff might be disconnected from your intranet or struggling to adjust to a portal migration.

This wreaks havoc on a company’s finances as disengaged employees cost the U.S. $450-550 billion every year. Finding ways to get your employees excited about the portal is critical to improving your company’s efficiency and financial success.

One way to reach these goals is to incorporate gamification techniques. Gamification uses gaming mechanics and logic to make work fun while at the same time fostering collaboration, adoption, and productivity.

Why SharePoint Lends Itself to Gamification

The concept of gamifying work systems and processes is an on-trend topic right now. Although the concept is not new, the adoption and use of these methods across the business world is still very much in its infancy.

Intuitively, SharePoint presents a perfect environment to ‘gamify’. Microsoft has focused on creating a dynamic digital workplace, and the ability to tap into the end-user psyche to understand their needs, challenges, and preferences has become a reality with analytics innovation. SharePoint is a portal where collaboration, content management, and business intelligence is shared but not always as efficiently as possible. Employee buy-in and engagement is a constant issue for SharePoint stakeholders and administrators, and gamifying the SharePoint environment could potentially fix this issue along with a host of others.  

 

Wouldn’t You Want to Play and Work Too?

At the heart of gamification, it’s a fun way to approach work; studies have found 95% of employees enjoy working with gamified systems. Encouraging play at work has numerous benefits.

By rewarding and recognizing employees with leaderboards, they feel motivated to work hard. This increase in worker productivity results in employees contributing more because employees have a clearer view of how their efforts positively impact the business.

Take for example your own SharePoint environment. There are most likely silent champions operating in each team or department. This small group of super users drive a disproportionate amount of your SharePoint activity, but they can go unrecognized for their efforts.

In a gamified SharePoint environment, these users would receive points, badges, and scores to represent their success. The converse applies to the less compliant users, whose metrics are visible in a game-like dashboard, giving them public and personal motivation to improve.

Gamification drives employees to boost their involvement with SharePoint, so they make better use of SharePoint collaboration, communication and management opportunities. At the same time, employees who feel useful and appreciated are more likely to remain engaged in their duties, their job and ultimately stay with their employer for longer.

 

Creating Motivation in the Workplace

Gamified applications increase productivity as they remind workers to complete tasks and introduce follow-up actions. These apps drive intrinsic motivation because users feel more in control.

Since users can see how the tasks they complete increase their total score, users have a greater sense of power over their actions. Conversely, these apps promote extrinsic motivation as workers can see how they compare to their colleagues.

Encouraging friendly competition is an easy way to incentivize employees. Humans have a natural spark to compete with others and capitalizing on this creates a fun and challenging environment where employees thrive.

Satya Nadella has been very clear about his vision for Microsoft, stating that “empathy is not just something nice to have, but it is core to the innovation agenda in a company.” When organizations leverage gamification and engagement strategies in the digital workplace, they translate Nadella’s vision into reality by putting themselves into the shoes of their users to create a more productive workplace.

 

Improving Accuracy and Oversight

Gamification enables managers to directly craft and monitor objectives for their employees. Managers can create a goal that they want to accomplish and decide how to assign points as employees move towards achieving that goal. After making the goal and progress measures clear, managers can oversee their employees’ advancement through the gamification portal.

Organizing employees’ behavior this way saves time since employees are aware of their goals and can see real-time feedback as they move closer to accomplishing them. Having this transparency allows managers to quickly check their employees’ progress from the comfort of their desks. It also creates an objective metric for managers to assess employees’ development as compared to others.

 

Introducing Gamify – Hacking SharePoint Engagement with Games

After seeing the advantages of incorporating gamified applications in the workplace, we created a tool for SharePoint gamification. Gamify is a new way to drive productivity and adoption through a gamified user experience. It makes user activity more visible to those using your intranet portal with the objective of boosting SharePoint adoption and productivity.

Gamification is designed to target end users by providing clear metrics of their progress and achievements. By showing users how they compare with their peers and other departments, Gamify fosters healthy competition. It also helps employees grow by showing users actionable next steps to improve their scores.

Gamify Has Fun Personas to Recognize Employees’ Efforts

Day to day work can become tedious. Fortunately, Gamify brings fun back into the workplace. Users are assigned to three different personas that reflect their efforts over the month. The assigned persona can change from one month to the next, mirroring the employee’s changing work goals and tasks over time.

The three personas emulate the various ways employees are using the SharePoint portal. Explorers spend most of their time in the portal viewing content. Engagers add comments and engage in discussions. Contributors write the posts and articles that are displayed in the portal.

Since the users can see which persona they’ve been assigned, they can easily see how they’ve been contributing to the portal over the month. They can also see how their colleagues have been interacting with the portal. For example, if they see a colleague has been assigned a Contributor role, they can search for their content on the portal and then view and comment on it.

Gamification provides continuous recognition, which drives employee adoption of and contribution to SharePoint. This sense of competition and accomplishment motivates employees to incorporate SharePoint as part of their daily work routine.

 

Gamify Is a Handy Tool for Managers

Just as users can see each others’ behavior, managers can also use Gamify to better understand their team’s intranet usage. By seeing which persona an employee has been assigned, managers can see how employees have been using the portal over the month.

If an employee is assigned to a persona that doesn’t align with her overall objective, her manager can modify the next steps she receives. Since Gamify organizes users’ actions and results in one place, managers can simply nudge users with real-time feedback to align portal usage with organizational goals.

Gamify Is Great for SharePoint Administrators

Gamify benefits administrators as well by providing them with a snapshot of which users and departments have the highest adoption rates. This enables them to easily identify their portal super users and those who need more training. Additionally, when Gamify is used for instruction, it creates a measurable increase in the completion of training tasks and involvement in learning.

Rewarding active users and encouraging inactive users makes all employees feel valued. Achieving this through an interactive tool like Gamify makes the process of improving SharePoint adoption feel effortless and fun.

 

Using Gamify with Office 365 and Yammer

Gamify is the only solution that allows you to display powerful metrics, badges, scores and achievements to your users within the SharePoint/Office 365 platform. If you’re looking to create Office 365 gamification, Gamify is currently the only tool that can do so. It also can be used to gamify your Yammer user experience, increasing your employee engagement. Having gamification for Yammer creates an environment that encourages both communication and collaboration.

If you’re interested in Gamify and want to find out more, check out our exciting webinar on the power of gamification to boost your SharePoint adoption. For a more personal introduction to Gamify, we invite you to schedule a demo!

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