Gamification apps and services been around for many years, but began truly making waves in business in the early 2010s. Many companies have leveraged the strategy of incorporating gamification in business as a solution to boost the effectiveness of their employee training, sales enablement, onboarding and learning management. According to a study carried out by Newzoo, it is expected that during 2021 the gamification market will generate more than 180 billion Euros with a 100% growth. What is the reason for this rapid growth?
The outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic has caused many industries to deal with their audiences from a distance and the urgent need for having the right tools to reach both their employees and customers.
But first of all, what is gamification? According to Gartner, gamification is the use of game mechanics and experience design to digitally engage and motivate a target audience to achieve their goals (be that your staff, customers, employees or channel). At Compettia we’ve been at the forefront of Business Intelligence for more than 20 years and pioneers for using gamification in corporate training, with our mobile app Atrivity. We have a ton of experience in utilising gamification within the pharmaceutical, healthcare and retail sectors.
In this blog we’ll take a look at what trends we’ve seen in gamification over the past year and what we’re predicting will be prominent this year. Understanding these trends will help you to make better use of the psychological impulse behind the dynamics of a game. With this knowledge and some real examples, we hope to help your business motivate employees, boost user participation, increase sales or solve a business problem using gamification.
Some metrics provided by corporate gamification
Companies that have implemented gamification within learning are currently reaping the rewards. The use of mobile applications gamified individually or as a complement to an LMS or e-learning platform, has been shown to improve employee productivity by 50% and commitment by 60%. Although it seems a utopia, gamification has not only been accepted by the younger members of organisations, a study by FinancesOnline reveals that 97% of employees over the age of 45 believe that gamification would help improve work. In addition, 85% of employees are willing to spend more time on training programs with gamified dynamics.
Trend #1 - Gamification for Digital Events are here to stay
2020 definitely brought about sweeping changes across the world. One in particular was the sudden and global transformation of events and meetings. Face-to-face discussions became screen-to-screen and the focus of conversations changed. Everyone had to adjust to the “new normal” and this posed a real challenge, especially for industries where sales and events are key. Due to the widespread cancellation of conferences and symposiums, many businesses took the decision to go fully digital and market trends suggest this is something that’s here to stay.
With the increase of these events, “zoom fatigue” became a real factor, so event organisers had the added challenge of recreating the excitement and connections that come with an in-person conference. And in order to stand out in virtual events, businesses have turned to gamification to help.
Here, gamification can help to deal with the shift from physical to digital and keep staff motivated. A mobile game is a highly effective way of keeping attendees engaged, interested and learning throughout. It’s something fun, easy to do and gives participants a memorable ending to any type of event. What’s even better is that you can measure the knowledge gained, easily report on ROI and then reinforce any key messages.
In 2020 many businesses attending and organising events incorporated a gamified solution and this is something that we’re predicting will become even more prominent this year.
Trend #2 - Gamification for Millennials and gen-Z
Over the past few years the progressive and accentuated entry of young people into the world of work has grown together with new technologies, as has the need to implement digital systems and mobile applications within business in order to make new recruits feel committed. According to a report prepared by Gallup, 71% of young people feel little or no commitment to their work.
To combat this situation, companies are integrating gamification through mobile apps. Intranets, LMS and e-learning platforms are often obsolete or not updated as regularly as required. Mobile applications provide convenience and simplify access to information. For example, gamification apps such as Atrivity, allow you to concentrate all the training content in small doses that is consumed competitively through trivia-type questions and subsequently evaluate the degree of knowledge in real time. In addition, one of the most used functionalities is the collections, allowing employees the ability to organise the information in folders and review the content as many times as they want.
Trend #3 - Start of Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality
Can you imagine using this type of technology for your own company training? Although it may seem like a very distant future, the reality is that we are not only talking about innovative mobile applications that, based on classifications or challenges, push employees to participate and compete in a healthy way, at the same time that they acquire the necessary knowledge to develop their profession. During 2021 and in the next few years we will start to see virtual reality and augmented reality elements included to improve the user experience and take gamification to a higher level.
Games are attractive and often fuel the player's desire to complete a milestone. They keep players focused and motivated for success. Game-playing borrows these intriguing features from games and overlays them with real-life business activities. This type of technology is still under development, but its use will gain strength over time to offer the user an even more attractive way to complete their challenges.
Trend #4 - Remote onboarding becomes standard
What started out as an interesting compliment to an LMS has now become a standard, and we have seen the use of gamification in the onboarding process increase massively over this year, with hiring managers and new employees unable to begin the process in-person. Companies across a number of industries can use a mobile onboarding app to add real value to their organisational process, with new employees learning and engaged from the moment they download and start viewing training content. Answering questions in a trivia style game, challenging colleagues and having team rankings fosters that strong sense of belonging from the first day a new employee starts.
All of the key information needed for any new hire is available at anytime, at the click of a button. Screening new staff is also made easy, with reporting analytics you can get a clear picture of key message comprehension, where the gaps in knowledge are which may need reinforcing. This is why we’re predicting onboarding using gamification to be one of our trends for the year ahead.
Trend #5 - Gamification helping to reduce hospital strains
The Healthcare sector is playing a key role in response to the pandemic, but at the same time its business model is being challenged by the impact of COVID-19, especially in relation to customer interaction and internal training. Gamification has been an assistant to many healthcare professionals and it’s widely believed that patient access to hospitals and healthcare facilities will be limited even in a post-COVID-19 environment, implying a need to master virtual relationships.
As part of our work with some of the top pharmaceutical companies in the world, we’ve seen a shift in the focus on a communication channels for medical professionals, patients and the general population. As a commercial and production model that in the past been based exclusively on presence, due to the current situation we’re experiencing the necessity to re-design channels of contact.
Newly diagnosed and chronic patients can be managed remotely via an app, in an effort to reduce hospital visits and save valuable time and manpower. So whilst essential health education still needs to be received, it can be self-managed through bitesize capsules of information which are available at anytime. As a gamified solution we are doing our part to take the health industry one step further in the fight against the pandemic through a new digital experience, identifying knowledge and boosting communication. And we know that in 2021 this will be more important than ever as the vaccine rolls out worldwide.
Trend #6 - Customization of contents
The continuous advance of mobile applications makes it possible today to create specific content for employees or teams, regardless of the country or region in which they are located. Previously, the same content was offered to all employees, but now, thanks to improvements in artificial intelligence and machine learning, it is possible for workers to automatically repeat the most failed questions or topics (which are less understood) as a way of reinforcing learning. Without a doubt, customization and individualization will be an upward trend during this coming year.
With a multi-language mobile application like Atrivity, you have the ability to send all your segmented training material just a click away! Players have the ability to create their own content repositories that they find most useful and necessary or store them in the "favorites" section. In addition, you will get detailed metrics thanks to the innovative knowledge map and from the app's repetition algorithm, employees will answer the most failed questions and topics.
Trend #7 - Knowledge evaluation metrics
Increasingly with big data, the ability to quantify the actions taken by a company are gaining importance. This is because companies need to quantify the results obtained in relation to the capital investment, time and effort made. For this reason, during 2021 the need to quantify the results obtained through gamification in relation to the organisation's strategic objectives will be accentuated in order to confirm the ROI of the projects carried out.
Mobile applications such as Atrivity offers extensive and comprehensive information by player, team, country or region and also by question and topic in order to justify the continuation of the gamification within the organisation. Thanks to the complex algorithm that the application has incorporated, your employees will repeat the most failed questions in order to avoid the forgetting curve and reinforce the less understood contents. The infinite metrics provided by the application itself allow you to detect gaps in knowledge and draw up specific plans to achieve the organisation's objectives, justifying the return on investment of each action.
Trend #8 - Gamification as an Enterprise “must-have” tactic
The year will be marked by continuing uncertainty caused by the still resistant coronavirus pandemic. Large corporations need to motivate and engage both employees and distribution channels in order to increase sales and achieve business goals. Mobile gamification offers the opportunity to reach both in-house employees and distributors with specialized training content, one of the most powerful sell-in trends.
Over the past year we large saw a number of enterprise organisations shifting to completely remote-ready sales teams through necessity. And with this year as unclear as the last, we know that for big businesses selecting the right tech stack will be the key to making remote working possible for the long haul.
This is why we’re anticipating gamification to become a “need-to-have” tactic for 2021, as leaders across many sectors look to bring visibility to what their marketing team are doing, keep remote sales reps motivated and engaged, to boost morale and company culture and of course to be able to measure all of their training efforts.
How far will gamification go? Conclusions for trends in 2021
Gamification has come to stay indefinitely, the technology included in mobile apps is increasing and being adjusted to the needs of many different industries and sectors. During 2021 and the following years we will see an increase in the use of gamification to improve the quality of training experiences and to ultimately achieve strategic business goals.
With another year of restrictions and lockdowns ahead, keeping employees connected and motivated during periods away from the workplace for an extended period of time will be a key factor in business success.