Games in the Office Are No Waste of Time

Office Workers Enjoying a GameCertain employers are turning to video game as an incentive to increase their workers productivity and to improve morale. There are different methods used, depending on companies, but the results remain the same, happier employees and more work accomplished.

One example is Regence Blue Cross/Blue Shield in Portland, Oregon, where IT staff get rewarded for their work by earning tokens, which can be spent on video gaming time.

At some companies, such as the Computing Technology Industry Association, playing games is a key element of their corporate culture, and involves most of the employees. Todd Thibodeaux, the association’s president and CEO says that his workers frequently help Tiger Woods play a few rounds of golf on Wii, or have a rapid round of Forza 2 on the Xbox 360 or Super Stardust HD on the PS3. Read More...

"Salaried employees know that their work day is what they need it to be and if they need to squeeze in 15 to 20 minutes of leisure time here or there, they know they can make it up later," Thibodeaux explains.

The games create friendly rivalries among staff, which contribute to team building. When people meet around a gaming console in a single room, and share this experience, everyone benefits. "Stress relief really increases productivity, especially at busy times of the year," adds Thibodeaux. He also points out that the policy has not yet been abused.

Snowfly, a company that sells technology-based employee motivation systems says that their products improve motivation and productivity as workers use competition to win prizes. It states that the arrangement has 95 percent approval ratings with companies who use their products.

The human resources director for the website The Motley Fool, Lee Burbage notes that his 200-employee company has a huge game room and thinks that gaming is beneficial for his staff. Here, Halo keeps them coming back for more. It’s no surprise that the company’s employee turnover rate stands at a minute 4 percent annually.

"People need a break. Studies show that if you just sit at your desk all day, productivity goes down and down," said Burbage. “"And hey, it's fun… After I go play Halo, I come back and I'm happy and in a good mood."