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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Now an Omnicom Shop Joins Move Into Gamification

"Gamification" is a popular way of building employee engagement and is continuing to catch on. It means making work as fun and engaging as possible by turning it into light competition or at least akin to recreation.

The approach makes sense given a number of factors that are sweeping the workplace these days like:
  • The rise of the Millennial generation that has been raised on digital gaming
  • The inexorable takeover of nearly every work task by digitalization
  • And the difficulty in generating the necessary interest in some of the mundane tasks that still comprise so much of the stuff of running a company.
One of the latest examples is from PHD, a media network owned by the Omnicom Group, who is rolling out an in-house platform embracing the principles of gamification. With more than 70 offices in more than 60 geographic markets, London-based PHD has built a global operating system named "Source" to enable its employees to work together in real time.

Source uses the same type of technology platform used by massively multiplayer online games, known as MMOs, according to Mediapost. Alongside facilitating and providing a framework for strategic decision-making, according to, Source will also host a "leader board" charting the relevant output of PHD employees across the globe. Employees will be ranked in the system based on their input. And career advancement will depend in part on those rankings. And what better way to lure employees to this new platform than to gamify?
"Implementing a gamified system is of huge benefit to our clients, with the best thinking rising to the top," said Mike Cooper, PHD's worldwide CEO. "It also fosters strategic planning and promotes the function by implementing it into daily activity."

Of course, some companies perceive gamification to be a risky initiative. For instance, there are situations where executives see a game as being "too fun" and raise concerns that the programs are taking the employee's focus away from the company's bigger picture.

But if you're a large company or a growing firm that wants to retain younger employees, gamification is definitely worth looking into.

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