Guest Column | October 16, 2017

What Gaming Technology Tells Us About Every Product's UX

By Giancarlo Di Vece, President, Unosquare


By Giancarlo Di Vece, President, Unosquare

Gamification, the application of using game thinking and game-design elements in a non-entertainment context in order to improve an outcome, is being utilized more than ever. When users feel as though they are active participants, it encourages more engagement and personal investment in the outcome. Gaming technology has played a substantial role in creating products and systems that respond profoundly to a user’s needs and has become a significant philosophy behind countless projects.

Gaming technology can be used for a multitude of industries. The education field has created numerous apps and programs that measure student success and comprehension. The media and entertainment industry has taken advance of this practice by incorporating challenges into programming and websites. Marketing has adopted this technology to promote clients and increase interest in brands. Healthcare companies have applied gamification to measure wellness and encourage healthy habits. Even hospitality is jumping on board and implementing employee-based agendas with the goal of increasing the sale of specific items. Other outlets are taking notice as well, such as financial services, government, and transportation.

By using the fundamentals of games which include enjoyment, recreation, simplicity, design, and trials, and applying those parts to complete a real-world objective, gaming transcends being just an entertainment medium. However, while gamification and its success can tell us a lot about internal drivers and motivations, it also gives a unique context to the user experience. Customer gamification is shown to improve brand loyalty and increase sales, as buyers fulfill their natural desire for socializing, competition, and rewards.

The Talent Experience

While firms are searching for new tools to motivate and enhance their customer service, gamification has an influence on improving internal employee management. As every employee wishes to be satisfied and feel accomplished in their career, these practices can have an impressive impact on HR and talent recruitment, retention, and management. By using this with design elements, employee productivity increases and the workforce feels committed to the project. Gamification adds value to the development team by encouraging achievement and self-expression. Furthermore, gaming technology provides direct feedback to company leadership, such as classifying team members that possess faster coding skills and applicable coding abilities. By utilizing tools such as leaderboards and profile dashboards, employees are motivated by constructive competition and achievement.

The fundamental objective of the application of gamification in this industry is primarily to change the process of keeping records and data by encouraging use. If firms and their developers embrace gamification, it pays off for everyone. Not only are behaviors aligned with company goals, but the UX becomes more of a priority. By enhancing the designer’s experience, you also improve user satisfaction through improved accessibility and interaction.

The User Experience

Gamification allows businesses to connect with their audience on a deeper level. Motivating customers to interact with products by participating in promotional activities helps to increase brand loyalty among people. For example, the use of gaming technology gives software developers a distinctive view into the user experience. While much of software is designed with UX in mind, using gamification gives a direct perspective on engagement and encourages participation.

The Approach

The use of gaming technology goes beyond generating interest. It cultivates long-lasting channels of revenue and supports user goals. For game-development practices to impact traditional business and consumer applications, it is vital that design starts with defining the establishment’s objectives and outlines the application deployment and adoption. Exceptional design is a catalyst for creating worthwhile experiences while generating interest and loyalty, which is why it is imperative that designers are on the same page as the client.

Games have hundreds of elements that can be utilized to achieve the desired result, including progress paths, feedback, rewards, connections, and the experience. Progress paths must be created to acknowledge the next step and what is expected of the user. Tasks can become more challenging over time, leading to greater reward.  The point of gamification for the firm is to receive analytical data; however, to keep the operator engaged, awards must be disbursed quickly. Depending on what type of program you are designing, social media may play a large part in creating competition and relationships. Most important is the user experience, even as technology grows and expectations change.

Making a Better Product

There are some misconceptions when using this technology. First, companies must be careful not to confuse activity with success. The actions must lead to something tangible. Second, don’t dismiss your user as an irrelevant gamer. Your audience must have a meaningful experience to remain enticed to participate. Third, have your business objectives defined before you map out your gaming technology. Gamification must make sense for what you are trying to accomplish. Lastly, always create with the players in mind. The point of adopting gamification into your network is to improve UX. That must start at the beginning of the process and design.

Not only must this gaming technology keep operators highly engaged, but it must also entice the user to return and participate for it to be successful. Nevertheless, as software developers and product designers are consistently looking for ways to improve UX, gamification is only expected to grow. Combined with other technology such as mobility, data analytics, cloud services, and social media, gamification is providing increased opportunities across the board. 

The benefits of gaming technology extend far beyond connections and increased productivity. Analyzing this information results in measurable effects, that in turn causes improved system performance and user experience. Data is more honest, fast, and scalable, with minimal resources needed, providing the organization to make quick changes and improvements. What follows is authentically rewarding for both the business and the user.


Giancarlo Di Vece, President, UnosquareGiancarlo joined Unosquare in 2013 and quickly grew to become the connector between client needs and delivery. He is deeply passionate about technology and process due to his industrial engineering background. His doggedly passion for the alignment of both has resulted in efficient, cost effective and successful partnerships with some of the best known financial services and life sciences institutions in the country. Before joining Unosquare, Giancarlo started a small craft company dedicated to the North American market when he was only 22 years old. He grew that into a 100-person operation, which sold specialty products to large retailers nationwide. He loves playing Tennis all over the world.