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Is Your Collaboration Solution Fun to Use?
When it comes to the deployment of software communication and collaboration services, user adoption (how well a platform "sticks") is a key business success metric. For providers, daily and weekly active users have emerged as important statistics in a competitive market, where workers and businesses are not married to any solution. However, many offerings today fail when it comes to the customer experience “stickiness” and level of user engagement.
A key to boosting adoption might be the different gamification elements embedded into enterprise software communication and collaboration offerings. Gamification is the use of game-playing elements to enhance user engagement and can be used to improve organizational productivity, learning and training, sales, customer retention, crowdsourcing, and personal performance, among others. Due to advancements in consumer services, more workers today expect to see gamification elements from their personal life in the communication and collaboration solutions that they use at work.
In the enterprise communications and collaboration space, gamification revolves around encouraging participation via fun and joyful means, creating an engaged and motivated workforce. Gamification can also help employees retain more information, drive employee retention, boost healthy competition, and help teams to bond.
To enhance the user experience, cloud meetings and team collaboration service providers have introduced gamification elements within their offerings, including emojis and GIFs, credit/merit points, themes, avatars, timers, badges, facial enhancements, virtual backgrounds, etc. Zoom stands out among providers in terms of gamification. Aside from offering frictionless video collaboration in terms of quality, simplicity, versatility, and value, Zoom also stands by its claim of making “video collaboration fun,” by enhancing its offering with gamification elements such as “touch-up my appearance” capabilities and virtual and video backgrounds, among other functions. Slack has also pioneered the art of user camaraderie with its gamification elements. Emerging from a multiplayer online game (Glitch), Slack success can be attributed mainly to the creation of a multiplayer-like conversational environment where elements such as bots, microinteractions (e.g., thoughtful quotes during loading time), custom emojis, Giphy integration, custom identity, and custom themes make the overall experience fun.
In the future, more enterprise communications and collaboration providers are expected to enhance their cloud software offerings with evolving gamification elements, borrowing further from the consumer world. For this, consumer-first mobile applications such as TikTok, Fortnite, YouTube, Snapchat, and Roblox have the potential to become key sources of inspiration. Although many of these applications appeal mainly to teenagers, they are often key innovators in the gamification world.
What Should Enterprises and Businesses Do?
When it comes to selecting and deploying a solution with gamification elements, enterprises should:
- Seek to implement software communications and collaboration solutions that incorporate various types of gamification elements and techniques, either developed in-house or via integration with third-party providers.
- Embrace software workspace customization. Gamification and personalizable software environments have become key factors in driving service stickiness and employees´ overall happiness. The implementation of custom company emojis and custom loading messages are some examples.
- Look to make your services more interactive and engaging overall. With more employers struggling to retain talent in an increasingly competitive global economy, efforts to boost morale and create engaging working environments have become essential.
- Extend the usage of gamification beyond employee-to-employee engagement. Gamification elements can also help businesses achieve the following: align with organizational objectives, improve the learning and onboarding process, drive overall technology adoption, and improve HR and marketing processes (e.g., motivate employee referrals and social media contribution).
To quote “Microinteractions: Designing with Details,” author Dan Saffer said: "It's the little things that make the difference between a good digital product and a great one." So, can you say that your enterprise’s cloud software communications and collaboration solutions are fun enough?