2013 Strategic Talent Acquisition Conference Part 7: Gamification Play Games to Attract and Engage Talent
Attendees were treated to an interactive session focusing on gamification this afternoon at the 2013 Strategic Talent Acquisition Conference. Michael Beygelman, RPO President of Pontoon Solutions demonstrated how the essence of gamification is not a new buzzword, but has been with us for quite some time. Beygelman shared a short history lesson that some HCI members may already know. Steel magnate Charles Schwab in an effort to improve the efficiency of his mill asked the manager why he was unable to run the mill to full capacity. The mill manager explained that he has coaxed the workers, pushed them, sworn at them, done everything in his power but nothing more can be done. With the day shift finishing up Schwab asked a worker how many heats were completed, and received his answer, six. Schwab grabbed a piece of chalk and wrote a huge 6 on the floor. The night shift came in and saw a giant six on the floor of the mill and asked the manager for the story. The next morning the giant six was gone replaced by a large seven. This competition continued between the day and night shifts until the mill reached its true potential.
“Gaming is a part of everyday life,” explained Beygelman and although there can be some productivity losses to game playing in the workplace, (1.5 billion dollars in lost wages due to Angry Birds alone according to one slide!) the potential wins far outweigh the pitfalls. By repurposing common attributes in gaming like points, quests, social graphs, progression, levels, etc. HR leaders can actually increase revenue and job satisfaction.
Beygelman provided a short case study of a restaurant chain applying gamification to their scheduling process. Whichever servers recorded the highest tips would get the best shifts for the week. After a few weeks in action the restaurant chain saw a 2-4% revenue increase across all of their stores and improved scores in job satisfaction.
Firms looking to explore gamification need to ask 4 basic questions.
1. Motivation – how will you derive value from the behaviors you are encouraging
2. Meaningful choices – are your activities sufficiently interesting to compete on?
3. Structure – can the desired behaviors be modeled thru software/technology
4. Potential conflicts – can the game avoid tension with other motivational structures
Have some thoughts on gamification you’d like to share? Feel free to follow us on twitter (@Human_Capital) and tweet your thoughts with the hashtag #hcievents.