The Future of Gamification in HR

Gamification has received acknowledgement in the online world as an effective tool to create customer engagement and build brand loyalty. Leading enterprises are now discovering the value of using gamification in HR to bring about internal changes that are a part of their organizational goals. 

Various companies that have already implemented gamification techniques understand that there’s much more to it than meets the eye! 

Gamification principles have tremendous power to create employee motivation, influence their learning behavior and foster brand loyalty. Additionally, gamification in HR has been used by various leading organizations as an excellent means for recruitments and induction training. 

The Power of Gamification

Gamification works on the core principle of using gaming techniques to non gaming environments. Effective gamification programs are aligned with organizational and business goals.


Organizations use the core gamification principles to insert key attributes like fun, play, rewards, competition, and addiction into work related scenarios. This helps in making the learning experience more fulfilling and of course, more engaging. 

Various sectors like education, sales, marketing, eLearning, health, etc have used gamification to motivate performance and hit the organization growth goals. Human Resources departments have now started to leverage the techniques of gamification. 

After all, what better way to motivate employees and create engagement than to incentivize and reward the employees for completing their regular work tasks and hitting their learning goals!

So why is gamification such a powerful word in the HR world these days?

Gamification manages to tap into the employees’ competitive spirit and creates a sense of achievement and recognition within them. And all this while being engaged in their regular assigned tasks!

Overall, the results are visible with higher motivational levels, improved employee engagement, and willingness to learn and participate. 

Gamification in HR

When considering human resources departments, gamification techniques are highly beneficial in creating employee motivation trainings and also to improve talent acquisition. 

As an example, you could apply gamification in HR to reward and recognise the top recruiters within an organization. Employees managing to complete quality recruitments that bring forth long term benefits for the company can be awarded. 

This will not just promote healthy competition within the group but also accelerate the overall recruitment process. 

Consider the motivation it could bring into the recruitment employees when they that their efforts will not just be recognised but be rewarded in the organization!

Game designers also work on play based learning that can be applied to enhance employee engagement. Additionally, gamification in HR is a highly effective tool to create positive and relaxed work culture. 

When employees know that achievements matter and rewards will be given accordingly, they look forward to actively participate in the games. 

And that’s exactly where the success of gamification comes from!

Designing a game appropriately, paying attention to the story aspect, the levels of difficulty and customising the rewards based on the type of employees is very important. 

While young employees enjoy strong competition, modern games and fun rewards like tickets to a concert, senior employees might be happy with more personalised rewards or even badges. 

How Can Gamification be Used in HR Management?

So how does gamification work for human resources departments? Gamification focuses on behavior change and motivational techniques which is a shift from the traditional non gaming environments. 

Well designed gamification programs should look like loyalty programs that target business goals. It is important to realise that customers are not the only factor that needs attention in terms of increasing engagement, motivation and fostering loyalty. 

Employees too can benefit using gamification techniques. The use of game based learning methods creates an environment in which the staff members feel recognized and rewarded for their efforts. 

Human resources section of any business sector can leverage gamification principles to motivate, reward and incentivise the employees for completing important tasks. 

Following are some key functions of gamification in HR:

Talent Acquisition and Management

Hiring processes within the human resources department can be more fun by adding some gamified experience. Rewarding the HR employees for completed processes like successful filling of application forms, setting up interviews etc. can be one step. 

Gamification in HR

One could also think of providing tangible rewards or incentives for enrolling qualified candidates. Rewarding the top recruiters can help the other employees to feel motivated and challenged to take on the task themselves. This is an easy as well as a fun way of encouraging the HR employees for talent acquisition. 

Employee retention

For any organisation, retaining its valued employees is a priority. This helps build a strong corporate culture. 

Gamification helps by keeping the employees engaged. It gives them a feeling of importance within the organizational culture which is a critical factor when it comes to retention. 

Employee retention is critical in order to maintain knowledge assets, consistency as well as culture. 

Gamification helps in creating a strong organizational understanding where the employees can be rewarded for team work or even for inter-departmental collaboration. Even process driven tasks or participating in company training programs etc could be recognized and rewarded. 

Games are an excellent tool to keep track and encourage higher employee participation. Performance records can be visible in the form of leaderboards and an be maintained for long term purposes. 

Employee motivation and training

While various HR training are necessary for HR employees, they are often not a priority for them. Most employees fail to understand its importance in their regular job duties. 

Gamification can be a wonderful tool to motivate them to participate in these programs and use the acquired skills in their work life. Game based learning can be fun. When employees see rewards and recognition coming their way, they are more likely to participate and take on new challenges. 

Overall, when the training requirements have been timely checked for the HR staff, the department as a whole benefits. 

Administrative aspects and Paperwork

Paperwork is often a necessary but neglected part of office administration. However, when it comes to the HR department, paperwork can be unavoidable for tasks like completion of enrolment forms, training reports, expenses, etc. 

Once again, gamification makes the process more enjoyable. When employees are rewarded with tangible incentives, completing forms in a timely manner can be a fun competition amongst each other. 

Creating career paths

Gamification techniques can help the HR department to create personalised and transparent career maps that show the progress of employees over the months/years. 

When employees see their peers doing well and succeeding, they want to get similar results too. 

Rewarding positive work behavior in the form of material benefits or badges brings in a sense of recognition for the employees which is a motivation for the others. 

Gamification in HR can be used to design programs that allow team members to see each others effort and recognise their contributions. And since the graph is trackable, one can view the past progress records and contributions at any given time. 

The platform hence makes it convenient to identify the employees which have acquired specific skills, completed certain types of trainings, have client connections, etc. 

The result? 

A more organised, efficient and motivated workforce. 

Top 10 Successful Examples of Gamification in HR

Following are some leading examples of using gamification in HR:

1. PwC Recruitments

PwC recruitment process is a very famous example of gamification success. PwC Hungary developed and launched a game called Multipoly. The game allows various job candidates applying with the firm to test their capabilities for working there. 

The game hence simulates work culture in the organization. Candidates are required to work in teams and solve real business problems. 

The gamification process helped the company to increase their recruitment rates and employ well qualified candidates. 

The gamification for recruitment has since then been used by various leading organizations in the world. 

2. Marriott Recruitments

The Marriott International used gamification principles for their recruitment process. The game challenges the candidates to manage and run a virtual hotel. It involves all aspects of hotel management, starting from restaurant design, serving guests, purchasing inventory, etc.  

The game has various levels and players are awarded points based on the overall customer service that they provide. The simulation based HR business game prepares and tests the candidates for real work scenarios. 

3. Deloitte 

Deloitte’s Leadership Academy uses gamification based learning to train executives around the world. The games create real life environments that provide training in a fun manner. 

More than 10000 employees across the globe have been trained by Deloitte using gamification techniques

4. Accenture

Accenture made use of gamification in HR to enhance employee engagement and behavior management in the workplace. Games that promote social collaboration, employee wellness are used by the organization. THis helps the employees feel more connected and engaged in the workplace. 

5. Xerox

Xerox provides a great example of using gamification for employee training. Game mechanics are used to train new appointed managers and to teach them to apply the skills in real job scenarios. Their Stepping Up application is a classic example of using gamification for Human Resources development 

6. US Army

Gamification has not just been used by corporate giants across the world. The US Army uses these tools for recruitment and promotion purposes. Their first person shooter game is built to test the skills of candidates as soldiers. 

The game has been effective in increasing the number of recruitments and bringing in skilled candidates. It is therefore an excellent example of gamification for HR. 

7. Walmart

Walmart has used gamification for a couple of years to provide safety training to associates in various distribution centers. This ensured that their workforce was complying with the safety procedures of the organization. 

8. Telus Corporation

The Canadian telecommunication organization, Telus Corporation used gamification to increase engagement and improve employee retention rates. 

9. Phoenix Software

The company used gamification for recruitment with an innovative design. Candidates were locked for an hour with company employees in an escape room. This gave them the opportunity to select the best candidates without going through the tedious process of CV reading, registration etc. 

10. SAP Career City

An efficient example of enterprise gamification, the organization created a simulation game for their onboarding process. The game helps them to go through and learn about job responsibilities. 

Final thoughts

The use of gamification by various leading organizations to combat employee engagement issues is finally being acknowledged by corporate giants. Most organizations agree that lack of engagement within the employees translates to lost revenue in the long term. 

Gamification provides an interactive platform for employees/HR executives where they feel recognized and rewarded for their efforts. The technique has proven to be highly effective in leveraging motivational factors to get desirable employee behavior.

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