playstation network down

PlayStation Network is down: Why gamification fails

Gamification isn’t just for play, it is a collection of tools used for measuring and rewarding progress.

A Harvard Business Review release a study that showed heavy evidence that progress was the single most influential factor in keeping people motivated in their work on a daily basis.

Only yesterday, the PlayStation Network experienced its first problems for 2016. Following some technical issues over the Christmas Period, the Sony developed platform had problems affecting all of the company’s platforms, so what do we do when games fail and we lose the gift of gaming?

Gamification is about a lot more than a winner and a loser; it is about measuring performance, providing feedback and improving a skill or process. This is where many gamification projects fail in the workplace.

Gamifying an element of work or project works well with an element of competition. Humans are naturally competitive, despite what some might say, and it is this component that can mask the learning element, making gaming an even more enjoyable way of growing a skill.

The competition element is certainly an important factor but it isn’t all gamification is about. It can also be about self-improvement which can act as a confidence booster at work. The enjoyment in general is also highly significant as it builds a positive connection with the task, making it more enjoyable beyond the game.

Gamification is also about feedback and engagement. If a gamification project isn’t monitored effectively, then you can’t measure its success rate. It needs to be continuous and delivering in real time. Feedback is also about benchmarks against your own performance and your peers. A task you may previously thought to be manageable by the masses, may show to be more difficult when there is a clear trend in feedback and results.

Gamification is definitely made for the future; wearable tech is already gamifying how we monitor our progress on things like health apps. However, it is said that 80% of gamified applications will fail to meet business objectives primarily due to poor design, but this doesn’t meant that gamification is a fail in itself.

It highlights that we aren’t developing gamification with the right tools or applications in place. You don’t even need the smartest technology to develop an effective gamified learning platform, you just need the right measurables and objectives in place.