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The German consulting company IDS Scheer won 2nd place in the finals of the recent SAP HANA Partner Race, a contest showcasing applications based on SAP's in-memory technology HANA. What was especially compelling with the IDS Scheer demo was the usage of the well-known German game-studio's CryTek game engine CRYENGINE3. CryTek, know for their blockbuster games from the Crysis-Series, provides a game engine that game-developers can use and built their own game.
IDS Scheer and CryTek teamed up to create a convincing scenario with an SAP HANA system in the background providing fast data analysis, and the a CryTek user interface bringing a 3D game style approach to planning data. This approach allows a more enjoyable data access and more intuitive navigation through the information. Additionally, the new workforce generation now hitting the companies - the millennials, a.k.a. as Generation Y, who grew up with such kind of user experiences - is very familiar with the game language and feels more engaged. It will be important for companies to provide these user experiences to hire future talents.
Making decisions was never easy. In a more and more unpredictable world it becomes very tough. Add distributed teams across the globe to that mix and making sound decisions may become impossible. This problem was the right challenge for Mohammad Ali Moradian, Kelly Lyons, and Maaz Nasir, three computer scientists from the University of Toronto.
They wondered how they can engage people to participate fully in an online collaborative decision-making activity, while simultaneously juggling their busy schedules. The scientists decided to use two decisions tools - one for brainstorming, the other for fast focus - and integrate them together with game mechanics into the social media platform SAP Streamworks.
At the BIZPLAY 2012 in Karlsruhe this Thursday, I had the honor to lead a gamification workshop with game designers, software consultants, and a government/industry liaison officer. In three hours, we had to come up with a business challenge and find a gamified solution. From three challenges that the participants discussed, we chose a project management problem. In this use case, projects tend to take longer as necessary, because of project members either not communicating, communicating too much with the wrong people. The goal was to come up with a design that encourages project team members to reduce project durations by finding and effective communication mix.
The fictitious publishing house is in the newspaper and magazine business, and there it's clear that every issue requires a certain amount of days to be prepared and built. Comparing the assumed average time of 100 days with best practices of 80 days showed that there is an opportunity to reduce the average time to produce an issue.
Recently, at the Gamification Summit in San Francisco, I met Brady Wicken from the consulting company Slalom Consulting. And lo and behold, while during my full day gamification workshop showing a fun example of how you can mash time recording with the block game Tetris, Brady mentioned a gamified version of a time recording system that they had implemented in their organization. I simply let Brady speak about the motivation to use a gamification approach for that system:
Project Management is one of these management tasks that beg for being gamified. Tasks need to be completed in time, team members collaborate, and issues raised in time so that they don't come as a big surprise for everyone. Surprisingly though, not many gamified solutions are available for project management. One of them is PropsToYou.
Instead of going the overly simplistic route of introducing leaderboards, points and badges to nudge team members to engage better with the project management system, Alden Gannon and team from Six Fish choose the way more advanced path to reward mastery and collaboration. While the project management system PropsToYou still has points and badges, they are reflecting the personal best of team members and not how each members fares in comparison to others. Alden makes the case for following Dan Pink's advice in the author's best selling book Drive to use Motivation 3.0 to make rewards count and not corrupt the intrinsic motivation in his two recent articles Part 1: Rethinking Engagement and Achievement Inside the Enterprise and Part 2: Toward Gamifying Mastery.
RedCritter Tracker is a project management service with badges, rewards, leaderboards and real-time Twitter-style feeds for software projects or other projects that require a "what's next" type of approach. It works for multiple teams or even individuals.
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