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Cloud-based workforce management provider, Workplace, is claiming a retail industry first by launching a fully playable video game, ‘Workplace: The Game’. The game launches to celebrate Workplace’s continued success with its proprietary Schedule Quality Rating (SQR), the only application of gamification in workforce management software.

Workplace is the leader in workforce labour forecasting and scheduling, and its SQR is at the heart of improving the overall efficiency of store operations to drive increased conversion and, in turn, sales. SQR takes a retailer’s selection of key performance indicators such as service levels, ineffectiveness, forecast labour to sales ratio, hours vs budget conversion rate, staffing level compliance and overtime, and presents them in a simple to understand one-to-five star rating for a schedule.

Players assume the role of operations manager and are tasked with achieving five star SQRs and running an efficient store that makes a healthy profit. The game is a simplified parody of the real life scheduling and forecasting modules of the WFM software and reflects a number of its features, including the ability to:

  • Measure the quality of schedules created against pre-determined KPIs with the five-star Schedule Quality Rating and challenging schedulers to publish only schedules with three stars or better
  • Respond to forecasting to generate an accurate overview of the labour hours required to ensure cost-effective and productive staffing deployment across the store estate
  • Select staff with the right skills to be in the right part of the store at the right time
  • Monitor working hours across all team members to ensure nobody is overworked or working costly overtime hours at a premium rate
  • Ensure that a suitable number of staff are present on the shop floor to meet the demand of busy footfall periods

The Workplace ‘eye’ guides players through the game to help them achieve a high SQR by offering guidance on managing the store environment and alerting them to hazards such as spillages in the aisles or staff becoming unhappy from being overworked. Like Workplace’s software which is cloud-based, and can therefore be up and running in a short timeframe, ‘Workplace: The Game’ is built in HTML 5 so players can begin instant gameplay from any internet-enabled device.

Britt Davies, chief marketing officer at Workplace, comments: “The SQR is part of delivering the Workplace vision: Your workforce, simpler to manage. The one-to-five star score indicates the quality of a schedule, and places managers in healthy competition with one another. The gamification element of the platform has proved to be effective for clients in driving sales as well as employee engagement, so what better way to celebrate this success than by creating a fun and engaging video game that incorporates the SQR element of the Workplace proposition.”

Rajat Paharia, widely regarded as the ‘father’ of gamification and the founder and CPO of Bunchball, comments: “In simple terms, gamification takes the motivational techniques that video game designers have used for years to motivate players and uses them in non-game contexts. These techniques include, but aren’t limited to, such things as giving users goals to accomplish, rewarding them with badges and engaging them with competition which encourages them to collaborate in teams, giving them status by levelling up and enabling them to earn points.”