Game On: Why Corporations are Turning to Gamification for Training

By September 8, 2014eLearning Solutions

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PowerPoint presentations, videos and taking notes: Traditional corporate training might be effective, but it’s not like employees are itching to log in their free time. But what if a training module was both effective and enjoyable? Gamification taps into learners’ need for achievement, competition and growth for maximum impact and results. It makes sense that it’s one of the fastest-growing methods of custom eLearning for workplace training.

Leveling Up to Gamification

Here’s the thing: Gamification is where organizations turn when they’ve already tried everything else. Sure, your traditional boring compliance training might get the job done, but are your learners engaged and connected to the material? Probably not. That’s where gamification comes into play. It’s for organizations ready to try the outer spectrum of learning and something new in terms of training and development. Learners enjoy a higher level of interaction and a little competition to promote higher rates of completion when compared to a traditional training module.

Playing to Psychology

Gaming does an interesting thing to employees. An atmosphere of “play” and competition can create a stronger team effort for all involved. Take compliance training among different departments: If marketing is competing against tech support to see who can complete the training and answer more questions correctly for points and achievements, suddenly both team spirit and friendly competition are injected into what is traditionally lackluster training sessions. Learners – no matter what department they’re from – like the idea of achievement. They enjoy demonstrating their knowledge and proving that they’re proficient. Corporate gamification helps harness that concept and utilizes it on a training platform. The end result is sky-high engagement, increased user enjoyment and ultimately, better results.

Gaming Gap

Before you create a game for your employee training, keep in mind that employee gamification tends to be highly generational. Gaming is a natural solution for millennials: They’re constantly on their phones and playing mini games online and via apps anyway, making game-based training a total no-brainer. But older learners might not be as enthusiastic, preferring traditional training to a gaming module. Offering a couple of training methods can help bridge that gap, but if you want all of your users participating in the same game, simple concepts and multiple delivery systems work best. Millennials might prefer to game on their phones and in their spare time, while Gen Xers might be more comfortable experiencing the module on their computers at work. Incorporating gamification doesn’t have to immediately mean creating a custom game for training purposes. It’s possible to start with inspiring some friendly competition among departments or even assigning points values to certain training-based tasks. Genius for teaching sales tactics, procedures and protocol, gamification turns training from something employees have to finish to something they actually want to accomplish.