Gamification of the Enterprise

In the summer of 2011, Facebook announced it would use the social performance platform Rypple (now part of Salesforce.com) for internal reviews and communications.  Rypple allows employees to create and compete in challenges, receive recognition from colleagues, see what others are working on, and find where needed skills may exist within an organization. But Rypple is not a game. It doesn’t even look like a game. It was designed, however, with several game design principles in mind.

“We wanted to provide a platform that emphasized intrinsic motivation,” says Nick Stein, director of Content and Media at Rypple. Rypple users can award badges to other users in a show of thanks for a job well done or for completing a task. A badge is simply a seal similar to what military personnel receive for accomplishing objectives or receiving a promotion. “The key … is to tie it to a real accomplishment, and then it has significant meaning and purpose.”

Stein’s portrayal represents a modern perspective on gamification: that it can enhance an existing business process, system or customer experience—in this case, employee performance management. This type of improvement of a business’s internal process systems and procedures (training, innovation management and more) has been called gamification of the enterprise and is emerging in organizations large and small.

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