Written by Joel Aquino, System Architect – Integration, of Sentara Healthcare
Today I want to introduce Joel Aquino, System Architect – Integration, Sentara Healthcare. He has a unique perspective on motivating your IT staff—because he is in the trenches with them. Here is what he has to say about current motivation tactics:
Let’s face it – IT administrators are extremely talented people. We all get that. But as many technical managers may find in these tough economic times, keeping a team of highly intelligent and creative engineers motivated can be difficult. As budgets are tightened, options for extrinsic motivators such as conferences, training or new equipment can become a scarce commodity. Managers must become increasingly resourceful in finding ways to inspire employees to accomplish daily tasks. And no…sugar and caffeine does not count.
Forget Angry Birds. Enter “ HP Omi User Engagement”. This is an innovative system that applies principles of Gamification to the administration of Hewlett Packard’s Business Service Management (BSM) suite of tools. Once installed and activated, our engineers were awarded “points” for various administrative tasks within BSM. Even before the demonstration of the new features was completed, engineers scurried in the background, performing tasks and developing useful items, with the sole purpose of seeing their name listed at the top of the leaderboard. Additional points can be configured for our Operations personnel, who are responsible for monitoring the console for various critical events and taking the appropriate steps to resolve them. Managers can positively influence employee usage of the HP BSM management tools by adjusting the point values for various tasks. When shown a demonstration the HP OMi User Engagement module, the common questions we heard from managers and staff alike were “When can we get this?” or “Do I get points for that?”
Based on initial feedback, we can safely say that for the small initial investment of the HP OMi User Engagement module, we could potentially reap benefits related to increased tool usage, more efficient and standard processes, and the intrinsic rewards of friendly competition. More simply, what manager wouldn’t want to see their employees competing to do more work?
The IT Operations team at Sentara Healthcare uses multiple HP BSM management tools, federated using the HP Operations Bridge. Joel has outlined using gamification techniques as a crucial way to impact their operations efficiency.
As a result of HP Operations Bridge, some customers have experienced a return on ROI that is several times more than their investment, even reaching $1M in 18months. Others have seen 30 percent reduction in service calls, >60 percent reduction in event volumes, and as much as 90 percent improvement in business availability.