Take cues from Pokémon Go for employee app success

Sitrion ONE, award-winning employee app

Have you caught them all yet? Or, are you still trying to figure out why Pokémon GO is such a big deal. With over 30M downloads, it’s no wonder that you see people standing in front of local attractions called ‘Pokestops’ fueling their avatars or catching Pikachu. Whatever your position, it’s worth paying attention to this app and draw from it when you deploy your own company apps.

What is it about the app that makes people want to use it (on average 30+ mins a day), and can those same reasons be applied to mobile apps for your employees? I see a lot of parallels between the two and here are a few of those comparisons. 

There's the hype

It started with a simple release, grew to a groundswell response, and then made national news. Similarly with a mobile app rollout, it should first be vetted with a pilot group of employees, then initiate a targeted campaign to get your employees excited about having news and important information at their fingertips on their smartphones. Beyond the hype, your mobile employee app needs to follow through with a simple download, login, and an easy-to-use intuitive interface.

Make it compelling and mobile first

Not only is Pokémon Go a fun and competitive game, but it takes advantage of the mobile device format and GPS capabilities to show Pokémon in your immediate area. The information in your mobile app should do the same by presenting information that is targeted to users by their functional role, topics of interest, geography, etc. Additionally, take a cue from consumer apps like Facebook and Twitter, which are simple and easy to use and navigate.

Give people reasons to return, again and again

Just as Pokémon Go keeps people coming back to “catch them all,” you should also give your employees reasons to frequent your app such as:

  1. Provide them with compelling content on a regular basis. Add access to common tasks or searches that make life easy for them so they can be productive where ever they are. 
  2. Mix up your company news with interesting stories about fellow colleagues. Encourage your employees to share experiences by posting photos of corporate events or recognize a peer for demonstrating corporate values.
  3. Have your CEO or department head post a weekly recap that appears in the app. 
  4. Leverage gamification by giving prizes or shout outs to those who login to your app daily during the rollout.
  5. Run regular input campaigns - encourage ideas or suggestions for process improvements or charitable campaigns. 

Your employee app won’t take the place of a hot consumer app craze, but if you provide a compelling, easy way for your employees to be informed with company news, engaged in the corporate conversation, and make them productive by making tasks mobile, they’ll use your app. If you don’t, they’ll just play Pokémon GO, browse Instagram, or like their friends’ posts in Facebook.
I haven’t caught them all, but I can help you with your employee app. Contact me at Vicki.spacko@sitrion.com to learn more about our award-winning employee app, Sitrion ONE, which helps you reach and engage with every employee in your organization. 

Vicki Spacko, Enterprise Account Executive

Vicki focuses on digital transformations through mobile strategies and the impact they have on business. Her passion is to work with enterprises on how they can leverage mobile channels to increase employee productivity. When not working, Vicki enjoys culinary pursuits (an amateur chocolatier and formidable griller) and running and biking Chicago’s lakefront - to counter balance the former.


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