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Improve Employee Engagement of your Remote Teams with Gamification

8 minutes read

Over the past few years, remote working has grown in popularity. Many companies have started to hire remote workers in huge numbers. Here is some research data from Gartner to consider:

  • By 2030, the demand for remote work will increase by 30% due to Generation Z fully entering the workforce.

  • 64% of today’s professionals say they could work anywhere and remote work policies are common (in place at 71% of organizations).

If you have got a remotely working team then, these might be your primary concerns as the manager of that team:

  • How do I ensure proper communication in the team?

  • How do you collaborate with your team members

  • How do I ensure that the employees are engaged with their work and are productive?

Communication and collaboration of remote teams can be taken care of by using tools that provide video calling, group chatting, and screen sharing. But, what about employee engagement? How can you ensure that your remote staff is engaged and productive as they would be at the office?

Taking measures to engage remote workers has becomes even more critical right now as there are many of employees making a shift to working from home to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

One of the best ways to achieve higher employee engagement and productivity is to introduce gamification into your remote employee’s schedule. So here, we have curated for you a list of some amazing games and activities that ensure the engagement of your remote employees and improves their productivity. Check them out:

1. Office away from Office

Work from home offers a convenient option for the employees to work while in bed with a laptop. But this might cause a temporary lag in the employee’s work speed and productivity. A well equipped home-work space is very important to keep up the work spirit of your employees.

So, create a contest around this and encourage your employees to set up a dedicated space at their home dor work– like a Home-Office.

Pro Tip: Even if they don’t have a dedicated room for home-office ask them to do as much as they can to create an ad hoc, bespoke space exclusively for work.

Then ask your employees to share pics of the home-office that they have set-up. And, the pics of them being productive and efficient at home.

They can upload these pics in your team chat group or any other platform that you use to share your office updates. Reward the best/creative office set-up with cash-bonus and food coupons to get delicious food delivered to the winner’s house.

2. Aliens have landed

This is a fun competition that encourages your employees to creatively describe your product. This competition is particularly useful when you have a new team of remote employees. This helps them to thoroughly understand your product and engage with it.

To run this competition, tell your remote employees to imagine aliens have landed on Earth and want to learn about your company. But since they don’t speak or understand the same language, it needs to be explained with five symbols or pictures. Ask each participant to upload five simple images that best describe and communicate your company’s products. Evaluate these images and see if they have common themes. Reward the person who has best described the product without using words.

3. Virtual Happy Hours/ Birthday Celebrations/ Team dinners

What makes an office fun is– along with getting to do the work that we love, we also get to have those little moments of celebration with our colleagues. Be it happy hours, teammate’s birthday celebrations or team lunches and outings.

But remote employees are left out of all of these. To have a strong team, its crucial that all your team members talk every now and then outside of their work.

So, make sure that you hold happy hours, birthday celebrations and team lunch/dinners frequently over a video call for your remote workers. You can order food and drinks for them and get them delivered to their house. This ensures that your remote workers are engaged with their colleagues and bosses.

4. A peek into your house

This is a fun exercise for the folks working from home. It requires the team members to virtually open their homes to one another.

Some people might have an amazing living room with a home theatre or a special room filled with a lot of memories. Some others might have a pretty garden or a backyard or terrace. Whatever it is, give a chance to each person in your team to show the favorite part of their house and talk about why it is their favorite.

Each team member will take a short video showing off their home and some of their favorite things. This activity allows team members to get to know one another on a more personal basis, and can lead to feelings of welcomeness and friendship.

This game may be better suited for small teams, but it’s surely a great way to get the team-bonding feels going.

Pro Tip: Another way this can be done is by allowing one team member to show off their home at the beginning of each week’s work meeting.

5. Done for the Day

This is a pretty interesting game that ensures that your remote workers are meeting their daily targets. This is especially important for salespeople as its crucial for them to meet some or the other target almost every day.

Encourage your employees to take a selfie of them with their computer screen showing that they have met a certain target for the day.

For example, a salesperson has got a target to make 150 calls per day, then he has to upload a photo by the end of the day showing that he has met the target for the day. For this, he can upload a screenshot or a selfie with his computer screen where the screen clearly shows that he has made 150 calls (Maybe a pic of a CRM or any other platform that tracks the progress of each employee’s activities).

You can use this to make your employees achieve various other sales targets as well like:

  • Number of meetings booked per day
  • Highest sale made per day etc,

6. Indoor Scavenger Hunt

Remember the fun and adventurous activity that we all love? Welcome to the indoor scavenger hunt.

Scavenger hunts aren’t just for co-located teams. Online teams can leverage them too!

Here’s how:

Create virtual teams and send each team an identical list of tasks to complete. Team members can then divide the tasks amongst themselves and stay connected while on the hunt through apps like WhatsApp. Each task completion must be accompanied by a photo of the team member completing it. Have all teams submit their photos to the company chat group.

Tasks can include:

  • Getting a photo of a dog wearing a bow tie
  • Taking a photo of your reflection in something other than a mirror or window
  • Wearing a funny hat throughout each task, and so on.

7. Coffee/snacks Sessions

The downfall of a virtual team is that they rarely get to experience the office perks like company-provided lunches, coffee, and team get-togethers. So, it’s easy for them to lose track of their progress when they don’t frequently have a casual/formal chat with their peers and seniors.

So, make sure that you hold a coffee/snack session at least twice a month. Here is how it works:

Order coffee and snacks for all your remote employees (according to their preference) and have them delivered to their respective homes. Then, ask them to join a video conference call with their coffee and snacks. Now have a session to recognize good performances and discuss all the aspects that are important to you or your employees (focus the discussion primarily around your employee’s needs).

Firstly, take this opportunity to publicly appreciate and reward all employees who have performed exceptionally well. Announce what gifts they are going to get. Next, ask your employees to give any tips or suggestions that they might have about the work or work process. Be patient in addressing the concerns of everybody in the team (if they have any).

This way you will be able to show your employees that you value their work very much.


Whether your team is fully remote or partially remote, a good set of gamification activities go a long way in bringing your team together, engaging them with their work and spiking their productivity levels. Use the activities mentioned in this blog to achieve a higher level of remote employee engagement and productivity.

Learn how to accelerate your employee engagement through gamification

Accelerate Your Sales Performance Through Gamification

Check out more resources on gamification

The Psychology of Sales Gamification

Accelerate Your Sales Performance Through Gamification

SmartWinnr: #1 Easy to Use Sales Gamification Software

SmartWinnr is an AI-powered gamification platform that helps you to improve your sales team’s knowledge and performance by up to 80%.

You can run the most effective, engaging, hustle-free, and automated contests with the help of SmartWinnr. No tedious excel calculations, live leaderboards, and many more.

Curious to see SmartWinnr in action? Book a demo with us today!

Published on Wed Mar 18 2020

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