There’s a certain kind of elation that games draw out from people, which is the reason why many are passionately into it, particularly video games. Who didn’t enjoy defeating King Koopa to save Princess Peach in Super Mario Bros.? Trash-talking while beating your buddies senseless on a few rounds of Fortnite is also hard to miss out on. Even Tetris took the world by storm during its heydey.


There’s no doubt that the popularity of gaming has reached global proportions, but does it have a place in your business?

As a matter of fact, yes it does. Businesses have integrated the elements of gaming into their operations and marketing strategies. Since then,  has become a buzzword over the years due to the fact that it triggers real, powerful human emotions of happiness, intrigue, and excitement, delivering more positive user experiences.

In one of its simplest forms, gamification is getting a stamp or sticker on a card each time you buy coffee. After collecting a certain number, you get a free drink or store merch. It’s like completing a level and getting a reward just like in a game. Nike applied this to their Training Club fitness app and Domino’s Pizza also had an app where their customers can create their own pizza. This delivers a positive customer experience that leads to better engagement, loyalty, and eventually, higher sales.


Why Gamification Works for Software Development

With all the benefits it delivers to users, gamification has been proven to work, which is why it continues to grow. Entrepreneurs are finding more game-based solutions to improve their business. A Statista report predicts that the worldwide gamification market will grow to 12 billion in 2021 from 4.91 billion back in 2016. For this reason, it’s no surprise that it’s no longer an uncommon method for business.

This stems from the generation who grew up playing computer games. From a young age, this kind of exposure developed a motivation system built around passion and awards. When integrated into a business process such as software development, it can be used to achieve compelling results. Here are some of the ways gamifying the software development process helps improve the overall business:


  • Developers acquire and master new techniques

Implementing gamified solutions can boost performance through competition and the ability to track other’s results. This pushes developer teams to learn more and make it fun.


  • It improves cooperation and increases motivation

An employee’s performance is driven by two aspects: the team’s common goal and the desire to outperform their co-workers. With gamification, both these aspects are well covered.


  • Developers spend less time completing a project

Adding game-like elements pushes software developers to be more efficient (to get a higher “score”), which helps reduce the time required to finish projects.


  • Decreases development-related errors

Due to the competitive environment presented by gamification, developers naturally boost defect fixing rates, which helps them focus on their core activities.


  • Takes on an agile approach to software development

Game-like solutions help vendors divide projects into smaller segments and deliver tasks gradually piece by piece. This kind of dynamic approach can significantly improve team productivity.


How Businesses Can Get Started with Software Development Gamification

The pros of gamification in software development are overwhelmingly convincing. The next logical step is effectively implementing this approach in the software development process. As with any process, there’s a right way to do it, much like a game walkthrough.


  1. Set goals

The organization’s goals are what’s going to help you lay the foundation of your framework, so you should define them clearly to make sure your employees are empowered to carry out their objectives. Set milestones that can be achieved in short amounts of time to assure regular progress.


  1. Lay down the rules

Just like any game, there must be a defined set of rules that are easy to interpret. This is where you detail the limitations, points system, and levels, making it a critical task in deploying the game.


  1. Give out rewards

Setting up a rewards system is a critical part of gamification due to its motivational factor. Employees may feel proud and accomplished after completion of an assigned task or project, but additional rewards further boost their motivation to be better.


  1. Include a leaderboard or scoreboard

In typical game fashion, there are leaderboards or scoreboards to know how you’re doing in the game, giving you a sense of progress and achievement. This is critical in gamification because it allows employees to measure their performance against the rest of the team to encourage competitive spirit.


  1. Provide real-time feedback

Instant feedback will always have a constructive effect on your employees. If positive, it’s going to energize them, while negative feedback will push them to improve. Delivering timely feedback in your gamification efforts also allows your employees to instantly take actionable steps to fix improvement areas.


  1. Define the metrics

Clearly establishing a set of relevant metrics will help you track your team’s progress as they move towards your organization’s goals. Make sure they’re flexible enough to accommodate changes.


  1. Distribute badges

Your organization will be faced with the challenge of identifying your employees’ strengths and fields of expertise. This is important to assembling a great team to make it easier to achieve your business’s long-term goals. Assigning badges allows you to identify their reputation, certification, and achievements just like in video games, and will also help your employees with validation of their efforts.



With the integration of gamification through the right approach, you’ll be able to elevate your software development capabilities to new heights. The game design elements will allow you to assemble or build a capable team that’s composed of developers who are both effective and motivated. Imagine having a team of Call of Duty players ready to take on the world for the glory of your company.

Yes, that’s how gamification can help you achieve your organization’s goals with the highest efficiency. In other words, you’re trying to make winning fun for everyone.


For more on software development and deployment methodologies, check out our Agile vs Waterfall Software Development Infographic.