Badgeville Places Functionality inside IBM Connections
Gamification vendor Badgeville is allowing IBM Connections users to layer its game and reputation mechanics on top of the Connections social software suite via a new connector. Chris Lynch, Director of Product Marketing for Badgeville, explained how he thinks this inter-connectivity will add value for Connections users.

Playing the Social Business Game

Lynch described Badgeville as a “behavior platform” that “identifies, influences and measures” user behavior across all major touchpoints. Game mechanics reward valuable user behavior, which in an enterprise context could include contributing to a support forum or posting on an internal blog as well as meeting sales quotas. Lynch said the “immense promise” of social business software such as IBM Connections can be fully realized by adding Badgeville’s gamification capabilities to the mix.

Badgeville allows companies to offer rewards with great granularity,” said Lynch. “What each organization wants to reward may differ. You might want to have a leader board that is not just a rollup of who’s done what across the Connections intranet, but who’s contributed the most content to the support wiki, for example.”

This aspect of the IBM Connections integration leads to the other major functionality Badgeville is making available -- reputation mechanics. “You can bring your reputation when you go to a support community or other enterprise systems,” said Lynch. “If you’re a Level 5 Product Support Specialist in an internal Connections community, you can take that with you when you go to an external community built on Jive or some other social business platform.”

Lynch said that automatically establishing a user’s reputation this way is a more powerful means of demonstrating their expertise than simply having them state it in a social business profile.

Badgeville Takes Aggressive Approach

Badgeville just released its software-as-a-service (SaaS) Social Mechanics, which expands and encompasses the company’s Social Context service that launched in September and seeks to make site interaction more social and dynamic by enabling customers or employees to follow people, content or products. In addition, Badgeville has also integrated game and reputation mechanics functionality into Microsoft SharePoint and plans to integrate with more CRM and document management platforms in the near future. Clearly Badgeville is aggressively seeking to extend the reach and value of its technology by making it available as embedded functionality inside social business suites such as Connections.

Connections administrators can integrate Badgeville game and reputation mechanics functionality through an IBM iwidget that allows them to extend Badgeville applications and technologies into the Connections platform. Badgeville functionality is installed at the administrative level with behaviors identified as most commonly gamified automatically turned on, and users can also turn on any specific behaviors they want to gamify. Connections 4.0 users can broadcast rewards notifications into activity streams.