When you have customers and prospects who talk about gamification as much as ours do, you have a great opportunity to learn about gamification best practices. What works, what doesn’t work, what changes result in marginal improvements and what changes don’t work at all… these are things we’ve been able to see with our customers as they roll out new programs.
We Are Gamification Best Practices Nerds
Why? Because when you don’t understand WHY gamification works, or WHY gamification doesn’t work, then you end up with a software solution that is a flash in the pan. At Snowfly we are proud that the average tenure of our customer is in years instead of months. This is only because we are not flash in the pan, rather our customer’s employees use, and keep using, Snowfly for incentives, rewards, and employee performance.
You would think that any incentives or recognition system would be used for years, right? Not necessarily. When the average length of engagement with employees is measured in months, you know you have a problem. But we feel like we know things that will help your organization have an incentives and recognition system that your employees continue to use after the novelty of a new system has worn off. A lot of this success has to do with doing gamification right (which means understanding gamification best practices).
In a recent email exchange between Eli (our President) and a prospect, Eli shared ideas that you might find intriguing. These might considered trade secrets because too many other systems just don’t get it. These are just a few reasons why our customers’ employees continue to engage with Snowfly:
Gamification Best Practices Include Recognition
You may have thought they were separate, and indeed you can have gamification with recognition and recognition without gamification. But when you combine the two you get a very powerful system. Incentivizing with just money is okay, but incentivizing with peer or manager recognition is really quite powerful. There’s something special that happens when you know others appreciate and are impressed with what you do. You get a rush from knowing you actually make a difference, and your work is seen and valued.
“Boring” Isn’t One Of The Gamification Best Practices
When your supposedly fun system gets boring, people stop participating. You cannot combat boring with a pretty or flashy system. You can’t combat boring with the funnest game in the world… because once someone conquers the game, it gets old. The key to combating boring is having an engagement platform that is flexible.
You need the ability to add new challenges, new games, new ways of engaging. In Snowfly we allow you, the administrator, to change goals, activities, thresholds, and brands regularly. Not so much that your employees feel confused or lost, but enough to keep the freshness factor there. Eli writes: “If your platform looks the same on day 1 as it does on day 100, people will lose interest.” I bet about 100% of gamification and incentive failures have to do with the boring factor, which is why Snowfly allows for an unprecedented amount of program flexibility.
We’d love to brag about some of our recent campaigns that were big hits with our customers’ employees… just give us a holler and we’ll tell you all about them.
Workflow matters, perhaps differently than you think.
You may think you want your employees to find gamification in their normal workflow, and have as few interruptions as possible. But Eli shared this:
Gamification best practices should take you OUT of your regular routine and workflow. If it’s too integrated into the software or processes that you’re in all the time, it becomes diluted and is attached to “regular” or “boring” and you lose much of it’s value. People need to:
- Stop what they’re doing,
- Focus on something new
- Get a dopamine hit to bring a smile to their face
- THEN go back to their regular workflow
Conventional thinking doesn’t want people to stop, change focus, and then have to figure out how to get back into their workflow. What we’ve found, though, is that employees need the change. They need something fun and unrelated to what they are doing. The dopamine hit is real, and can help performance throughout the day. This, again, is another factor of having a gamification system that stays fun and doesn’t die after a few months.
Gamification Best Practices Matter
We love bringing on new clients. We love working with strategic leaders who are keen on engaging employees and improving culture. Because of that we want to provide a solution that works for years, not months. Gamification best practices is a huge part of our success. No matter what your incentives budget is, no matter where your employees work, no matter how often they have a computer or device in front of them. We know gamification. We know recognition and incentives. And we know how to help you create a system that works to get results.
Ready to talk about it? Reach out to us here and let’s get on a call. We’d love to brag about what we’ve done and the value our clients get out of using Snowfly.