Gamification has proven to be an effective tool in both academic and business environments. Yet, additional uses of it are quickly cropping up across a wide range of industries, further fastening its reputation for being both valuable and versatile. This practice - which refers to using game-like designs and mechanics in learning and training applications to make them more engaging, entertaining and, ultimately, effective - offers an extensive list of benefits including:
- Increasing engagement and participation
- Boosting productivity
- Facilitating collaboration
- Expanding knowledge, skills and capabilities
- Fostering effective training and education
- Building stronger consumer loyalty
- Grasping and retaining attention
Markets and Markets estimated that the global gamification market will grow from its 2015 value of $1.65 billion to at least $11.10 billion by 2020, marking a compound annual growth rate of 46.3 percent. One of the reasons fueling the popularity and success of gamification is that it allows people to control the environment, which complements the rise of self-learning and autonomous systems.
Gamification insights and outlook
In this age of technology, it is becoming increasingly harder to capture - and keep - the attention of audiences. The rapid proliferation of digital and mobile devices is contributing to shortening attention spans. This, as well as the accumulating channels of connectivity that are resulting in information overload and causing an increasing amount of distractions, have made it crucial for organizations to develop better strategies for enhancing engagement. Gamification provides a way to do that.
Gartner indicated that emerging technologies and innovations, such as mobile and cloud-based platforms, that have helped drive gamification adoption and acceptance will continue to take off in tandem with future digital developments. However, it was also pointed out that, over the next coupe of years, it is likely that the majority of failed gamification apps will be due to a "lack of understanding game design and play engagement strategies."
For organizations to realize the greatest benefits gamification has to offer and maximize return on investment, it is critical that the design, development and deployment processes of the game are carefully and strategically executed. Gartner noted that the businesses that apply the appropriate principles and mechanics will experience a positive transformation.
"The design of game apps should be centered around the experience of the user."
Game app development best practices
This all points to the necessity of companies working with a highly qualified, experienced and skilled provider of gamification tools, software and technologies that allow them to design a solution that meets their specific needs. According to Training Industry, the initial step organizations should take before creating and implementing gamification platforms should be to clearly identify what the business objectives are and confirm that a gaming app is an effective solution.
If so, the source emphasized the importance of choosing a partner that allows a close relationship between the company and developers - keeping in mind that the most crucial element of a gaming application is the experience, which means critical attention to design skills must be considered. It is not just about viewership, Training Industry explained, but engagement - and establishing this effectively or successfully requires a certain degree of knowledge and expertise.
According to WhaTech, it is assumed that providers of open source platforms will drive growth in the gamification industry thanks, in large part, to its cost-effectiveness and a growing number of key business decision-makers accepting it. Therefore, it would be beneficial for companies to choose a vendor that specializes in open source software and services.
Additionally, businesses must select an outsourced IT company that can ensure consistency, regardless of the platform, channel or type of content being used and delivered in the gamification process. In this regard, it is also useful if they can guarantee the content is adaptable and integrative with other materials and assets, and can seamlessly be refreshed on an as-needed basis, with as little disruption or wait time as possible.