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Jive Software gets its game on

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The developer is teaming up with Bunchball in an effort to increase adoption and engagement within Jive-powered customer and employee 'social' communities.

Social business platform developer Jive Software is the latest enterprise applications company to borrow from the principles of electronic games to encourage broader and deeper use of its software.

The company this week introduced Jive Gamification, which is powered by the Bunchball platform. The module uses incentives and other features designed to encourage participation in the communities that companies are building with its software. The module is intended to encourage more people -- in both internal and external communities -- to get engaged. Jive has been using some game theory in its software already, but the Bunchball integration elevates this to the next level, so to speak.

"For years, Jive has used game mechanics to drive user engagement," said Nathan Rawlins, vice president of product marketing at Jive, in a statement. "With Bunchball, we're taking gamification to the next level -- we are giving Jive customers the ability to personalize incentives that encourage specific business activities for greater user engagement and business value."

Let's face it, humans are competitive creatures, even as adults. (Actually, especially as adults.) Your organization will absolutely benefit from looking at the features that engage people to use so-called consumer applications and games and thinking more about applying them within your corporate life.

Companies like Jive and other enterprise software developers are wise to rethink what will encourage people to use applications more thoroughly, which should improve productivity. Over the next several years, businesses that rely too heavily on bloated applications that are overly complex to use, could find themselves left in the dust.

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Heather Clancy

Section Editor

Heather Clancy has written for United Press International, ZDNet, Entrepreneur, Fortune Small Business, the International Herald Tribune and the New York Times. She holds a degree from McGill University. She is based in New Jersey. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure