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ZIZO Executive Interview

Megan Kelly, COO, ZIZO

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Sheri Greenhaus, Managing Partner, CrmXchange, conducted a Q&A with Megan Kelly, COO, ZIZO Technology to discuss their revolutionary workplace gamification platform that takes the stress out of managing and motivating your teams.

Can you tell us how ZIZO got started?

Our founder and CEO, Jimmy Chebat is a serial entrepreneur. He has experience in many industries including collections, the tech industry and even owned a call center. From his role in the collections industry, he shifted more towards operations.  It was there that he discovered the issue of accountability and employee engagement within the workforce and realized these issues were part of the industry culture. The call center environment was subjective; favorite agents were getting better information and types of work – which made it seem like they were performing better.

Deciding to something about this workforce issue, he built a data analytics tool that broke down how agents were performing.  Work was then assigned based on data. He combined the initial software with gamification, integration, and automation to create ZIZO.

ZIZO, essentially a startup, has been available since 2020, is that correct?

2020 saw a shift in the workforce - the workforce was younger and there was higher turnover. Customer service work can be emotionally exhausting.  Agents required a clearer understanding of the organization they were representing and they needed to be more engaged with both the company and the customers.

ZIZO enhances the agent experience in an engaging way.  Agents can clearly see their role in the company, how they are performing and they are rewarded in real time.

What is the number of customers that you have now?

We've been selling for a year and have 5 companies currently on the platform.

Do the agents in those companies feel that they are being treated more objectively?

Yes. Every activity is logged and the agent is rewarded accordingly. There is no need to ask managers how they are doing, no guessing if agents are hitting their mark.  This produces a greater trust in their organization.

Are you able to customize on the agent level in order to influence the outcome the company is looking for?

ZIZO is highly customizable. It can be customized for select KPIs such as attendance, talk time, accuracy, etc. We have a proprietary algorithm that maps that out different goals and objectives every day for each organization.  Games will change depending on the agent.  An agent with 2 years of experience will have a different ‘game’ or objective than a new hire.  The manager, through our contest feature, can set specific content such as: 1 versus 1, team competitions, individual versus goal, or a specific contest with an additional incentive.

Can the games can be customized for a specific set of motivations? For example, some agents are motivated by money, some by time off.  Is this easy to do in scale?  Can a supervisor create goals for agents?

Agents earn currencies within our app, which they use in the reward store for whatever they'd like. We split rewards into 3 categories.


  1. Digital experience which improves their experience in the app. They can improve their avatar, they can buy new celebrations that pop up on the board when they have a big achievement, and they can create their own unique kind of identity around that. 
  2. Purchase of tangible goods.
  3. Company perks like personal time off or a better parking spot.


Agents can reward themselves in the way that is meaningful to them.

It sounds very flexible.

Yes, teams are motivated in different ways.  This technology is flexible in order to motivate teams in ways that mean the most to them.  

Are you able to track agent retention from the companies that are using the system?

General statistics tell us that engagement is directly correlated to retention.  Employees who are engaged at work are about 70% more likely to stay at their current role.  And they’re 30% more likely to not take sick days when they don't need them.

We've had a beta group on the platform for 2 years.  This company was not only able to improve their retention, they were able to grow their team.

Is there any difference across demographics?

We thought there would be more adoption with younger cohorts, but there was adoption across the board.

We have a customer success manager who works with every individual client.  The younger demographic really cares about digital assets. The older demographic tends to care more if they are performing to their boss's expectations. They appreciate how easily they can see how they are doing on the dashboard. It’s providing that engagement either way.

Do you have a feel for what types of games work best?

Our most popular game feature is the collaborative goal.  For example, if the group hits their goal they can leave early.

Are games used more in sales or in service centers?

Each company has their own goals – for sales it may be the number of products sold, for service, it could be tickets closed.  Everything is customizable and you can weight it by points. If it’s not a number driven metric, you can take that metric and convert it to points within the app.  

What trends are you seeing?

We hear about the great resignation and quiet quitting. It’s a buzz headline, and since the pandemic began there is a lot of interest in performance tools, especially ones that leverage gamification. Younger employees want work-life integration. They want visibility into what they're doing and an understanding that it's part of something meaningful.  Gamification gives them visibility, clear set goals, and bridges the gap between life and work.  It’s something they enjoy doing in their free time and now they get to do it at work.

Where does a company start when they engage with ZIZO?

Everything that I've described about the platform comes with our base model. The only other item would be our integration process.  Every engagement starts with discovery. What KPIs are important to them? What metrics that matter in each department? We walk all companies through a process to determine their KPIs.  We then reverse engineer that down to the agent level.  We take that information and locate where the data is on their systems and then build connections to those systems.

What level of person creates the games?

It depends on the size of the organization and what titles they use, but it's typically whoever is managing the call center floor.  We work with them the first month where they can learn best practices and monitor what works best for their specific teams. Anything above a management level can be ‘set and forget’.  We normally recommend one manager sets aside maybe 1 to 2 hours at the beginning of each month to set their contest for the month. From there, they automatically go out at the times they were set. We are working on the ability for agents to challenge each other with the approval of a manager.

If an organization is very large and they want continuity across departments, can that be arranged?

Yes, it can be.  We often break things up into departments. If one person is managing multiple departments, they can view each department separately and set those contests for each department.

It sounds like this tool can be used in other departments outside of the contact center as well.

Yes.  It can be customized, depending on what the roles are.

What are the goals for the company?

We envision ZIZO to be the gold standard in performance management. Our approach is different – we put the agent first.  The happier your clients are is a result of the better experience that they're having with happier agents. That experience comes from the agent's satisfaction. When your clients are happy and your agents are happy, your numbers are better. And that trickles up.

We would like to be the driving force as the agent advocate and meeting them where they are, by making this type of role more fun, more engaging, and more meaningful. This creates better customer experiences which result in better returns for the business.