Forrester TJ Keitt
In September, Forrester's TJ Keitt published a case study of Microsoft's Windows and Office Communicator (now Microsoft Lync) teams' use of "productivity games."
What are productivity games?
Put simply, they are a series of games produced by a small group of defect testers to encourage rank-and-file Microsoft employees to put software through its paces before it is released to the public.
As many technology product managers can attest, getting employees of your company to take time away from their tasks to run a program in development and report any problems can be a Sisyphean effort: Bug checking doesn't have the allure of being an exciting, sexy job -- but it happens to be necessary.
It will come as a surprise, but since 2006, Microsoft has used five games to look for errors in Windows Vista, Windows 7, and Office Communicator; a sixth game -- Communicate Hope -- is currently in the field to test Microsoft Lync. Why so many games, you ask? Well, they work.