Why and How Gamification Contribute to Information Systems Success in the Workplace: An Action Research Enquiry in B2B Sales

23 Pages Posted: 29 Aug 2017

Date Written: September 8, 2017


Despite years of rich academic production of research on information systems success, companies are still struggling to achieve expected return from their internal IS implementations. Billions of euros are spent in projects, which too often fail to deliver the expected returns on investments (Nelson 2005). In the meantime, researchers have noticed that the game industry is able to tap into human psyche to get players to engage voluntarily with some unparalleled intensity and duration (Przybylski, Rigby, and Ryan 2010).

In this context there is growing interest on how organizations can learn from gaming to foster similar levels of interest, enjoyable experience and commitment in non-gaming Information Systems (Robson, Plangger, Kietzmann, McCarthy and Pitt 2015). Initially emerged in digital media industry before becoming an academic topic (Deterding, Dixon, Khaled, Nacke 2011), the concept and practice of Gamification consist in applying game elements to utilitarian applications. This paper examines how gamification of utilitarian information systems in B2B can contribute to achieve greater benefit from IS investment. More specifically, it aims to answer the following questions: how does Gamification impact utilitarian IS success? What roles do motivation levers play in that process? What are the design principles for effective gamification of utilitarian IS?

In order to respond to those research questions, we use a 2 cycles Canonical Action Research design to introduce gamification features in a customer relationship management software CRM utilized by an European Sales organization at Hewlett Packard Enterprise. This effort resulted in conceptualization and adjustment of a research model inspired from the Information Success Model (DeLone and McLean 2003), and Self Determination Theory (Deci and Ryan 1985). The model highlights 4 main situated motivational affordances of gamification and clarify inter relations between concepts, resulting in description of 7 design principles.

Keywords: Gamification, Game elements, Motivational affordance, Information System Success Model, Self Determination Theory, Enhanced use, Intrinsic motivation, Extrinsic motivation

Suggested Citation

Coatalem, Alice, Why and How Gamification Contribute to Information Systems Success in the Workplace: An Action Research Enquiry in B2B Sales (September 8, 2017). Seventh International Engaged Management Scholarship Conference, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3027101 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3027101

Alice Coatalem (Contact Author)

Paris Dauphine University ( email )

Place du Maréchal de Tassigny

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