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Where in the employee lifecycle can gamification assist?

  23rd March, 2018 By An Coppens

Since 2013, I have been using the employee lifecycle as a way of describing where the meaningful touchpoints can be where gamification can potentially make a difference. Notice the very hypothetical language used, gamification may not be the most appropriate solution in some of these processes. On occasion the tweaking or fixing of the process is what is needed. Typically the employee experience touchpoints are explained with this specific slide (if you are going to use this slide or a variation of it, please leave the attribution in):

The way I see it, building a compelling employee experience starts well before the person walks through your doors as a new employee. In today’s world, people are learning about your brand and organisation all of the time, from social media to advertising to their own social network are ways of gaining important information. This information will then shape their opinion on whether your company is an attractive place to work at or not. Creative plays on employer branding have been around in the gamification world for some time. When we meet in person we can discuss those more.

The recruitment and assessment process are two more areas where gamification can play a role. Our opinions on an organisation can be swayed significantly depending on how we are treated in the recruitment process. A great interview process with feedback and fun assessments with good insights can be what a candidate needs. The opposite holds true too. I remember one organisation a long time ago asking me to take what felt like 6 hours of online tests, by the time I had finished the last time, I no longer wanted to work there. Equally, sometimes a great interview and then no further feedback at all, sends a clear message on how they felt about you as a candidate.

Once the person joins, you want an on-boarding process, often both for the hiring manager and the new employee. There are some project examples we have worked on and some great brands that have been quite innovative in their approach to gamifying on-boarding from self-managed quests to treasure hunts.  Productivity and performance management are best served with instant feedback, gamified solutions in this space have been popping up in several places. Some include elements of employee well-being and in our experience, a fun well-being campaign can also positively impact the bottom line, team spirit and productivity.

The elusive trio of job mastery, job enrichment and job rotation are derived from job design theories from Hersey and Blanchard, which can impact the levels of motivation individuals experience in their job by the very design of their role (more on this another time). Basically, the way a job is designed and tweaking it as a person evolves in skills and experience level may result in new levels of enthusiasm for the job itself. In some organisations, promotion is an option, in others due to their flat structure elements of job design may be more appropriate. In any case, all four options allow you to create a level up experience.

Exit strategies for employees moving on to either other organisations, allow for feedback back into the organisation as well as community building of an alumni network. Some organisations have even been very strategic about where they placed and note the word placed employees that wanted to move on. They actively assisted employees in finding suitable positions in new organisations. Guess where their loyalty goes?

Note that each of the touchpoints on the employee lifecycle is, in fact, a process in their own right. This gives an important clue as to where gamification is most relevant. It also shows an obvious hint that it is not the person we gamify, but rather the process.

I would love the opportunity to delve deeper into all of these points, so feel free to ask me to speak at your event, consult me on how this can be applied in your organisation and maybe train your people into good practice around employee engagement and the use of gamification.

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