August 12, 2020

Measuring gamification

Imagine yourself as an HR or corporate manager looking for a tool that will bring you closer to reaching your KPI’s. You decided to adopt gamification as the new digitalized business practice. Are you now wondering how to set up valuable metrics? Besides measuring the behavior of players, think of short and clear surveys, maybe even a single question survey.

In a gamified environment, surveys are an essential source of information

image While exercising digital gamification (Funifier) in an organization, one adopts and embraces an environment that is driven by constant and real-time feedback among players as well as between the player and the system. Those interactions provide many data-driven opportunities to measure and develop simple or complex metrics that would not be possible in an analogue world. For example, frequent (daily, weekly) simple surveys to quickly collect feedback from customers or employees were not possible for technological reasons. They were usually carried out less frequently (quarterly, annually) and contained a lot of questions or statements. This caused boredom and even fatigue with the interviewees, at the same time presenting different limitations as the source of information for the management. One could think that I am against more complex or lengthy surveys, which is not the case; they only provide a different quality of information.

How to measure in the digital gamified environment?

The players’ behavior presents an excellent source of information for the management. Behavior is also easily measurable, through, for example; the number of visits, likes or frequency of players actions. That behavior is linked to players perception of the gamified environment. Perception can as well be easily measured, using surveys. Imagine you can have both sources of information available in real time. Then the question is what kind of survey is the most appropriate.

What Funifier has discovered recently is that the single question/statement survey can connect employees or customers perception to their behavior so trustfully that one can quickly see how responses change together with the change of gamification rules or organizations KPI’s. It is so because digital allows a short time between cause and response and can bring us closer to discovering causality. The more frequent the survey (mind the boredom and fatigue!), the closer to understanding the nature of the organization we can get.

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What can be learned from gamification?

The described set-up is useful to more than one corporate function. Let me be more illustrative; if you imagined yourself as an HR manager, you would most probably want to know how engaged your colleagues are? Of course, you are aware that Gallup regularly publishes engagement statistics for employees around the world and that your organization needs to improve or to maintain that engagement scores. Let us not forget that positive employee engagement is as low as 3% and as high as (only) 30% for developed countries’ companies, making the rest of employees either not engaged or actively disengaged.

On the other hand, if you are a sales director and want to try the new gamification activity, you can always use the gamified environment to survey your employees or customers for their feedback on the usefulness of that activity. While changing gamification scenarios to fit the feedback of the player, we are looking for a way to increase their participation and engagement. Therefore, more than one corporate function can benefit from such an approach.

We know that gamification can help, but how do you measure and continuously track improvement?

What is NPS?

There are several engagement indexes and surveys available. One of the most developed and applied is the Net Promoter Score (NPS). It is a single question survey used to assess customer responses to one simple question: On a scale of 0-10, how likely is it that you would recommend our brand to a friend or colleague?

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The NPS is calculated as the difference between the percentage of promotors (customers who refer your brand to others and help fuel growth) and detractors (unhappy customers who can impede your growth). That difference can range from -100 to +100 and is used as the basis to understand the customer experience. What is a good NPS is another question and it differs from sector to sector? In an example, in the telecommunication industry, it ranges from -13 to 30 while in fast food chains, it is between -12 and 59.

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Later, NPS was used to measure employee engagement; the question was reframed to: How likely is it that you would recommend [Company] as a great place to work? NPS also got the new prefix and was promoted as the e(mployee)NPS.

Is there a specific p(layer)NPS?

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Yes, we can formulate the NPS question differently to reflect loyalty and satisfaction of players with gamification practice. One can ask employees how likely is it that you would recommend this job as an environment where we have fun to a friend? Or customers, how likely is it that you would tell your friend about [Company’s] products because they are fun to use?

The point is that pNPS approach encompasses all stakeholders that are playing in the gamified environment, and that can be workplace, shop or B2B partnership.

Why is this approach so good?

Funifier’s approach is to provide a holistic set of digital tools to engage all relevant stakeholders in gamified activities. Besides providing more than 90 game mechanics and ability to measure player behavior, we have pushed gamification limits forward through providing another set of tools, the single question survey approach such as NPS provides a connection between perception and behavior of players. The approach involves a quick, single question survey that can help us understand how player perception is connected to their behavior in a more direct manner than through any complex survey approach.

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Dr. Emir Džanić,

Funifier Regional Director – Europe & Middle East

Expert in open innovation and organisational culture

emir@funifier.com