Understanding badges in our gamification platform

Welcome to the badge apprentice guide. I’ve already explained to you why gamification is such a great tool, but this the time we are about to go a little bit into the details.

badges in motivation

I would like to introduce you to our system of badges. Hopefully you will get to know them better after this post. I will describe each standard badge you will meet throughout the game, as well as the badge creator. Shall we begin?

motivation in it

First of all: badges in gamification?

Badges have always existed throughout the history in different forms, whether in chivalry, army or within various organizations, etc. Nowadays, their purpose haven’t change much. They indicate a rank, an accomplishment, distinctiveness, as well as mutuality.

viagra badge

An example of a badge displaying a person’s emotional attachment to viagra. Source: cafepress.co.uk

Well, in fact, their purpose have changed a little bit… Now, IT teams can play GetBadges and have fun while they work on a project! Badges are one of the most distinguishing and visible elements of gamification. Fulfilling accomplishments and collecting badges marks an employee’s skills, progress and status.

Three reasons why people love badges? Here we go!

  • People enjoy a bit of recognition.
  • Collecting badges keeps you moving on.
  • They contribute to the general development of a team and project.

Our badges

Users can collect them to build their profile. They are published to a team chat software (Slack or HipChat). Monthly summary is sent to active players so they know about their progress and status among peers. Badges that rely on some predefined conditions, e.g. “Solve at least 1 issue on Friday after 3 PM” or “Participate in at least 100 CI successful builds”, are awarded automatically but other badges can be assigned by managers using passcodes.

badges in gamification

As discussed earlier, we will allow managers to assign badges manually without handing passcodes. This feature may come useful as a reward for participating in training sessions or company events, such as hackathons.

gamification in it

GetBadges can also use desktop notifications to give user instant gratification after getting badges and achieving milestones in one’s progress. This helps user to feel the progression and a sense of acknowledgement.

So far, our users have received more than 3000 badges!
Built-in badges provide a long term goals with the following actions:

  • closing tickets
  • creating new tickets
  • pushing new code to repository
  • submitting code for review
  • reviewing code
  • releasing working software to continuous integration

A company’s badge creator

We are completely aware of the fact that each company, like ours, has its own, one-and-only atmosphere, inside jokes and anecdotes. How about capturing them in your own, company badges?

screams-internally

If Leo was a member of your team, he could get an “Oscar Winner” custom badge.

gamification of it

Badge creator requires you to provide badge name, description, image and conditions.

Name is a bold header of a badge. Most video game players are familiar with various naming schemes, coming from quotes of popular culture (“You shall not pass”), names of trades (“Senior Developer”), adjectives (“Obsessed”), sayings (“Early bird gets the worm”) or just descriptive sentences (“Getting Started” – for solving five tickets).
gamification of project development

Triggering conditions can be divided into two groups: events based and passcode based. Built-in badges have additional types that will be released later to provide more flexibility. Both available types can be mixed in conditions for a given badge.

Event based conditions (currently supported mechanism is sum) will award user a badge automatically when the event sum is reached. You can add multiple conditions and user has to fulfill all of them.

image10

Some examples of badges:

  • “In and out” – “Create and solve 100 tickets” – 100 issues open, 100 issues closed
  • “Under construction” – “Participate in a successful CI build” – 1 build success

Passcode based conditions provide a Game Master with an option to award badges by giving passcodes. A badge can be awarded by entering a passcode in the Claim page. Passcodes are valid for a year or until first hundred users. You can, for example, give out passcodes to users attending a company training. Giving them passcodes instead of marking user as having a badge incentivizes them to take some action, and gives them a sense of reward when they enter it into the system. Claiming the badge manually helps the user see more connection between the action and its outcome.

Some example badges:

  • “Safety matters” – “Visit all five lectures on security” (Passcodes handed each session)
  • “Perfect demo” – “Lead a customer demo with no mistakes” – (Passcode handed by Product Owner)

An example of a mixed badge:

  • “Veteran” – “Your tech-lead see that you are a seasoned coder” – 500 issues closed, 500 builds success, 500 commits, passcode given by team tech-lead

I hope that now you have a better picture of our badges. In case of any questions don’t hesitate to contact us. Badge on!

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