Gamification: the best tool to captivate millennials

Millennials are proven to be the hardest generation of talent to retain at work.

Until the arrival of gamification.

Millennials are known for being autonomous, restless and keen on independence. They are constantly looking for new experiences, even at work. For this generation, working is not just an obligation, nor it is only about money. They are looking for something different: a comprehensive experience through a job that is rewarding but also meaningful.

Moreover, they are not shy when facing challenges or looking for quick results. As we already know, they grew up in the social media era: for them, it’s all about instant gratification.

According to the latest research from Gallup Consulting, millennials currently represent 38% of the US workforce. However, only 29% are fully committed to their work, as the report “How Millennials Want to Work and Live” points out.

With those numbers, we can understand why the term “employee engagement” has taken a completely different meaning. HR experts have begun to see gamification as a way of captivating, motivating and engaging millennials at work.

But what does gamification actually mean? Sebastian Deterding, a specialist in the field focused on researching user experience, video games, persuasive technology and gameful design was one of the first people who coined the term. In his own words, “Gamification is the use of game design elements in non-game contexts”.

In the last decade, many companies have incorporated different kinds of games in their offices like table tennis, video games, and board games, among others.

But, what would happen if gaming became an intrinsic part of the job? Well, we’ve seen that gamification in a workplace presents many significant advantages, especially in certain fields such as commerce, advertising, marketing, sales, call ceners, etc.

Here are 5 reasons why gamification can help to engage millennials:

1. Makes you feel happy

For the millennial generation, money cannot be the only reward when performing tasks at work. Assuring their well-being and complete professional satisfaction is also extremely important. Several scientific pieces of research demonstrate that gaming causes an increase of dopamine levels in the brain, boosting one’s energy, good mood and productivity.

2. Promotes collaboration

People tend to create strong bonds when playing games. At least, we trust that everyone is going to play according to the rules of the game. Teamwork is an essential force in any organization, and millennials are well aware that significant things are not meant to be achieved alone.

3. Fosters the learning process

Through trial and error, gamers learn to cultivate all kinds of skills. And if there is something that this generation wants, it’s to know 100% what is expected from them and what kinds of things they must learn to be even more successful in the professional field.

4. Motivates self-improvement

Games are also excellent tools to encourage personal growth. Once you have a clear vision of your achievements, the brain instantly activates its reward system. For example, progress bars and leaderboards that showcase the player’s journeys, how far they have come and how far they have left to go push employees to desire an epic win.

5. Helps employees understand the goals of the organization

Last but not least, the strategic use of gamification can improve internal communication within the company, clarifying its short and long-term goals. When millennials understand “the why” of their tasks at work, they are more likely to stay on track and develop desires to advance along their career path.