New trend : Gamification Agility

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Adoption of Gamification in the business strategy will boost Agile software development method over the Waterfall



Gamification is the concept of applying game design thinking into non-game environment such as innovation, marketing, training, employee performance, health and social change to engage end users by allowing them to have more fun after choosing the particular product. Gamification can be applied to any industry and almost anything to create fun and engaging experience, converting users into the players.

Recent Gartner Research Report

▪   By 2015 more than 50 percent of organization will convert their innovation processes into gamification

▪   By 2014 a gamified service for consumer goods marketing and customer retention will become as important as Facebook, eBay, or Amazon

▪   More than 70 percent of global 2000 organizations will have at least one gamified application


The goals of gamification are to meet higher levels of engagement, change behaviors and stimulate innovation. Gartner identified four principal means of driving engagement using gamification. These means emphasize AGILE MANIFESTO.

Agile Manifesto

▪   Individuals and interaction over processes and tools

▪   Working software over comprehensive documentation

▪   Customer collaboration over contract negotiation

▪   Responding to change over following a plan


Gartner Report Principal Means of driving engagement

1. Accelerated feedback cycles

In the real world, feedback loops are slow with long periods between milestones. Gamification increases the velocity of feedback loops to keep up engagement.


In scrum, the process starts out with a product backlog, which is made up of a prioritized and estimated list of user stories. The highest priority user stories from the product backlogs are pulled into the Sprint Backlog by the team. Sprint is a 30-day time box in which the team fully completes a set of user stories, fully developed and tested to result in a small, working increment of software. Retrospectives (feedbacks) are held every single sprint so that teams do not only talk about what could be better, they can actually do something about it before the end of the project.

2. Clear goals and rules of play.

In real world, goals are fuzzy and rules selectively applied. Gamification provides clear goals and well-defined rules of play to make sure players feel empowered to meet goals.

ID-10074166 The scrum team has daily 15 minute standup meeting called Daily Scrum. The team works their way around the room with each member answering three questions:

1. What work have you done since the last meeting?

2. What are you planning to do today?

3. What obstacles are you encountering?

 3.  A compelling narrative

Real world activities are rarely compelling. Gamification builds a narrative that engages players to participate and achieve the goals of activity.

ID-10055013 The stories are built around each function or feature and written down on note cards. Each story has to be clear and to demonstrate value. It has following compelling narrative.

As a        { Role}

I want     {Underlying Need}

So that   {Business Value}

4. Challenging but achievable tasks.

In real world there are large and long-term challenges. Gamification provides many short-term, achievable goals to maintain engagement.

ID-10020166The acronym INVEST is derived from the attributes of user story.




(I)NDEPENDENT: Mutually exclusive user story and does not overlap with user story.

(N)EGOTIABLE: Expected to change during the development. Agile values collaboration between customer and members of team.

(V)ALUABLE: Priority based on customer value.

(E)STIMABLE: Adequate information in the user story for team to be able to estimate effort involved.

(S)MALL: Small enough to be useful.

(T)ESTABLE: Clearly defined acceptance criteria from customer.



Picture courtesy:


Vijaya Sawant

Vijaya Sawant is an exceptional project management professional with a unique blend of business, project management and technology skills. She has more than 25 years of latest technology implementation experience in both matrix and projectile environment. She has a first-rate track record of successfully spearheading and delivering a broad range of high impact, high profile projects, including leadership of multi-national, multi-vendor teams. She has demonstrated ability to bring about positive change through crafting relationships with multi stakeholder groups and service delivery groups, understanding business needs and proposing and delivering viable technology solutions.

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