Have you noticed your employee’s noses getting more and more glued to their smartphone screens? Have you heard rumors about searching for Pikachu in the office? If so, you might have a few Pokemon Go players on your team.
Pokemon Go is a seemingly innocent game. It is an augmented reality game, which turns the real world into a hunting ground for virtual Pokemon. Since its launch, it has attracted the attention of millions of people. If it’s attracting the attention of your team in front of customers, you have a problem that cannot be ignored.
The Pokemon Go Craze
Pokemon Go launched on July 6, 2016 and since then it has attracted over 21 million players. Within the first 13 hours in the App store, this game skyrocketed to first place.
Player retention rates are high too. 70% of players return to the game the day after it’s bought. That’s higher than the average 30% of games.
As a manager, perhaps the most important statistic is how much time this game takes. On average, a player spends 45 minutes a day playing Pokemon Go. Although that might not seem like a long time in theory, there are other important considerations to make.
– Avid players will login while at work looking for rare Pokemon to catch.
– If your business is a “gym” your employees might login more frequently to battle other players.
– If your business is a Pokestop, daily game play might be on your employee’s to do lists.
How It’s Disrupting the Workplace
The craze might be overwhelming, but is it really something you need to worry about as an employer?
In short, yes.
Pokemon Go is a unique type of game. Unlike other popular games, such as Candy Crush or Words With Friends, Pokemon Go is augmented reality. That means that players must be on-the-go to hunt Pokemon and advance in the game. This isn’t a game they do mindlessly after work. It is location dependent. The more places your employees are (such as your office or on sales calls), the more likely they are to check in and see if they can catch an elusive Pokemon.
What You Can Do
Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Samsung and Snapchat are just a handful of the big tech companies that are investing in augmented reality to develop games and apps similar to Pokemon Go. Although the Pokemon craze might die down, augmented reality probably won’t.
As a business, it’s important to keep your team motivated at work. One of the best ways to do this is to schedule in break time and force employees to stick to it.
Some employees feel at liberty to take breaks whenever they would like. Others will not take a break unless explicitly told it’s okay. Scheduling in at least one fifteen minute break every few hours will give your employees permission to step away for a little bit. This will help your employees decompress, give them a chance to play Pokemon Go (if they’re interested) and rejuvenate their mindset for the remainder of their shift.
When you stick to the break schedule, you instantly set clear cut boundaries. You send a signal that it’s okay to play Pokemon Go while at work as long as it’s within the allotted break time. Any other time, it’s considered a distraction and will not be allowed.
By scheduling in your breaks, you give everyone on your team the same amount of time away from work, making it easier for the players to enjoy their game, and the non-players to not feel taken advantage of by those who are on the hunt to grow their army of Pokemon.
Author Profile Jon Forknell is the Vice President and General Manager of Atlas Business Solutions, Inc., a software marketing company specializing in employee scheduling software, including ScheduleBase employee scheduling software, and other business software solutions. In the past, Jon has been recognized by the U.S. Small Business Administration as a SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year. Atlas Business Solutions was named as one of Software Magazine’s Top 500 Software Companies in 2004 through 2007 and again in 2010, 2013 and 2014.