Gamification in Workplace Training and Learning
Considering the speed of technological developments and the evolution of various ways of working, training and continuous learning are more important than ever. They help future-proof employees, ensuring that they can keep up with the ever-changing demands of the modern workplace.
Professional training also ensures that your people are equipped with up-to-date skills, which contribute significantly to productivity and efficiency. In short, the money you spend investing on your people will come back to you tenfold.
It’s important to note, however, that as the workplace continues to evolve, so do the methods for training and learning. This is not to say that traditional formats such as seminars or meetings are no longer effective; rather new approaches are more engaging for employees.
One such approach is gamification. The concept was first introduced in 2008 and gained more popularity around 2010. Since then, gamification has been applied in various industries like education, marketing, and yes, even corporate training.
What Is Gamification?
Gamification is the process or attempt of enhancing a system, service, or activity by incorporating game-like elements such as points and rewards. Using this definition, gamification in workplace training and learning means giving the participants some form of recognition or prize after completing a course (or courses).
What’s even better is that it’s easy to apply gaming aspects to a training programme, even if you didn’t develop it yourself. The key is to figure out what motivates your people and what kinds of systems engage them the most.
Why Apply Gamification in Training?
There are plenty of reasons why you should gamify your workplace training programmes. Some of the include the following:
- It improves overall absorption, recall, and application of the key points learned.
- It breaks the ice and encourages teamwork, particularly among members of the same department or group.
- It creates a more unique and therefore more engaging mode of learning.
- It makes learning metrics easy to measure and appreciate, giving employees a bigger sense of accomplishment.
- It acts as a complement to company culture, making people feel more connected to the company and their colleagues.
It was also found that employing gamification concepts in corporate training increases the likelihood of completion.
Again, make sure to carefully consider the kinds of rewards and methodologies your people find compelling. These may depend on their tenure or age. For example, older employees may prefer monetary gains. Meanwhile, new hires might be interested in more learning opportunities (e.g., an international conference) to help advance their career.
Another good thing about gamification is that you can use it for any kind of training for any level. These include both non-technical and technical skills, such as workplace etiquette, customer service, quality assurance, product knowledge, and machine operations.
As a bonus, gamification also enhances the overall learning experience by instilling positive behaviours such as patience, confidence, work ethic, and even leadership.
How Do I Gamify Training?
Now that you’ve seen what gamified training can do for your organisation, it’s time to plan how to apply it. The first thing to do is to assess your materials. Make sure that it’s updated and then look for aspects you can gamify.
If you have limited training resources, work with a certified training provider. Tell them what you need and they may be able to develop a customised, gamified programme for your team.
Purpose is also a crucial aspect of gamification. Beyond making the learning experience fun, what else do you want to accomplish? These goals can help guide you in developing your gamified training modules.
You should also emphasise to your employees that the focus should be collaboration and not outright competition. Having a competitive environment can help foster growth, but unhealthy rivalries can do the opposite. Make sure that your people don’t lose sight of the goals you set at the beginning.
Finally, you should set attractive yet realistic rewards. Identify what your employees want and need, then see how you can meet these. At the same time, be honest. Don’t over promise since this will only lead to disappointments.
What Are Some Examples of Gamification In Training?
There are a lot of easy ways to incorporate game elements in professional training and learning. Some of the most common ones include:
Quizzes and Games
These are perhaps the most popular methods of gamification in the world of corporate training. There are also various formats you can adopt, which help prevent learner fatigue.
Try dividing the training course into levels that must be completed to advance to the next one. You can also add some obstacles, such as situational problems, which can be overcome by knowledge acquired from previous stages.
Quizzes at the end of the programme can also be dual-purpose. It can serve as a final assessment and also determine the rewards received at the end of the course.
This approach is ideal for companies with products to sell. For example, car dealers can create a virtual garage where salesmen can learn about car models. Meanwhile, real estate brokerages can create digital spaces to test an agent’s capability of selling different kinds of properties.
Each employee can then receive a score based on their mastery of the product and their sales performance. Those who can maintain their position on the leaderboards may then receive bigger rewards.
Personal Achievement Trackers
If your employees prefer something a little more private, consider building personal achievement trackers where they can “level up” and receive recognition as they train and master skills. This can provide a sense of accomplishment without feeling too much pressure.
Gamification might be all about fun, but do remember that it takes commitment for it to succeed. If and when you do succeed at it, however, you’ll definitely appreciate the value it can add to your company.