Gamification to boost enterprise social networks usage ?

By March 20, 2012 Drop a comment
human resources

Rypple now brings gamification and social elements to Salesforce's Chatter. By acquiring Rypple, Salesforce hopes to empower Human Resources with tools that stick to employees' reality.

In large companies, giving employees feedback on a regular basis and rewarding them for good work isn’t always easy, as managers are often overwhelmed and don’t necessarily have the right tools. Traditional performance evaluation tools and processes are usually complicated and from another time. “Traditionally, companies do annual reviews of their employees, but it isn’t their only option. One could also imagine a less corporate way to evaluate performance, one that better sticks to the modern enterprise”, explains Olivier Nguyen, Marketing Product Manager France at Salesforce. Performance management firm Rypple, rencently acquired by Salesforce, brings gamification and social features to Salesforce’s Chatter to empower both employees and Human Resources. It uses game mechanics to encourage feedback and reward employees despite hierarchies and in the end, ensure better performance.

Gamification encourages feedback on performance

With the integration of Salesforce Rypple, Salesforce users can now “Thank” or give badges to their colleagues as a reward for a good job done, a successful collaboration on a particular project, a helpful brainstorming cession, or after having closed a deal. The number of “thanks” and the badges – “leadership”, “customer advocacy”,  “determination” – then appear in the employee’s profile for the whole company to see. In other words, employees have a corporate profile on their company’s social network, and a social reputation. They can also ask for live feedback and comments from their managers, who can assess goals to their teams, track progress and achievements. This social profile system can therefore bring visibility to anyone bringing value to the company, “despite hierarchies”. Those game mechanics and social features are meant to encourage feedback and rewards among employees as well as promote the company’s values and culture among all employees.

Giving credit back to HR with modern performance evaluation tools

Salesforce Rypple is designed as a real tool for Human Resources to evaluate performance. As Olivier Nguyen explains, Rypple aims at disrupting traditional corporate evaluation methods: instead of the traditional annual review, HR can evaluate employees depending on a specific project at a given time, and take into account for their evaluation the feedback of other employees. Olivier Nguyen also explains that such tools can empower HR on a deeper level: “bringing interaction and triggering engagement can give credibility back to HR in that it provides HR with tools that correspond to employees’ reality and everyday life – social networking and gamification. Indeed, numerous studies have recently showed the poor usage rate of enterprise social networks by employees. However, whether gamification will suffice to boost internal social networks usage remains unsure.

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