“In every job, that must be done, there is an element of fun you find and snap! The job’s a game” – A Spoonful of Sugar
Gamification is a tool to encourage people to change their behaviour by positive re-enforcements. While doing so, the Gamification technique uses game design concepts like providing opportunities to earn points, developing a constant sense of challenges, presenting an opportunity to improve the user behaviour and recommending user actions to achieve the next level and so on. Gamification has been successfully implemented in multiple situations to drive the desired behaviour from the audience. Some examples from day to day life are –
- Speed camera lottery – In this system users were asked to obey the speed limit on roads. Users were thrilled at the idea that riding according to the speed limit or lower makes them eligible to enter a lottery and can potentially earn them money. The over speeding riders were fined, and a portion of the fine was collected in the lottery pot which was distributed among the riders who obeyed the speed laws. This experiment observed a reduction in average speed of about 22%, from average speed of 32 Km/h the reduced speed was about 25km/h
- Driving efficiency indicators – In this system the drivers are prompted to change their normal driving behaviour and switch to more fuel-efficient driving. New cars, especially hybrid cars, are equipped with sensors to sense the efficiency of driving in terms of fuel saved. Drivers compete with each other in terms of maximum distance they can drive on their cars with one gallon of fuel and hence try consciously to be fuel efficient. Companies like Nissan, Toyota, Honda and many more are rolling out these features inbuilt into the console of their new generation cars to promote fuel efficiency
- Fitness applications – Normal healthy habits of walking, jogging, running or even playing individual sports are gamified through fitness applications. These solutions have created a game of fitness around the day-to-day activities performed by the players. Various individuals having different lifestyles can also compete with each other on the basis of these common currency – points that they earn on the basis of their individual goal fulfilment. Some leading examples in this area are Fitbit, Garmin, Jawbone, Apple watch and many more
Most of the organizations believe that Gamification cannot be applied to their work, because their work is very complex and serious is nature. They assume that work and play are opposites of each other. However, research does not support this assumption. Stuart Brown, founder of the National Institute of Play explains that the opposite of work is depression and NOT play in his TED Talk. .
The concept of gamification is to bring the level of engagement that users display in games, to serious work. This does not mean that the users will be shooting arrows at birds or riding a car across the town on their computer screen. The key elements of game design which create the addiction in games are built around the work environment to generate the spirit of positive enthusiasm among the employees. The employees will get more engaged with their routine day to day work, start competing with the peers on the basis of performance and generate overall better results.