February 18, 2020
Gamification is more than just a buzzword in the corporate training circles. It is a strategy that applies game mechanics and gameplay elements to the learning content for engaging learners and thereby turning the entire learning process into a game.
Below, we’ll explore the key benefits of gamification to help your better understand its role in modern corporate training.
This training strategy has been gaining ground with the human resources department for the past 4-5 years. To keep the employee engaged and reach the objectives, HR has been using the digital environment.
Gamification works since employees are inherently motivated to complete the game and win rewards in return. This is popular with employees as it provides them with the confidence to complete the task and increase their capability. This also serves as a safe method to fail and try again without having to worry about negative feedback from colleagues. The game provides them with immediate and positive feedback about their performance.
Games can be fun, but they are often business-oriented. Some of them view it as a technology that modifies behavior using technology.
Gamification can be effective if the following key elements are included in the gamified learning strategy:
Gamification has always been associated with behavior modification and motivational activities. It is in use in a variety of industries from customer service training topics to insurance, and different settings from classrooms to workplaces.
To make it more effective organizations need to make gamification into a highly personalized experience. This can be done only if the learner’s personality, habits, emotions, and activities are fully understood. The goal of gamification should be to offer an experience that is unique and thereby establish a connection with each learner.
From the perspective of behavioral change, organizations need to consider the following factors:
In the real world, each action a person takes has a consequence. Because gamification is usually designed to simulate practical, real-life scenarios, it helps to cement skills by letting learners apply them in a safe, virtual space where a mistake will lead to a negative consequence, like loss of points or levelling down, while a correct action will give them rewards, like levelling up and badges. Employees learn to understand that their real-life actions will have real-life consequences too. This is a carrot-and-stick analogy that forms the very basis of learning.
Human beings have a desire to compete, both with themselves, as well as with others, and win. Gamification fuels this desire, and teaches employees to be competitive, a quality that is a requisite in corporate organizations. By showing learners their own statistics, gamified eLearning courses motivate them to beat their personal bests and push themselves further and harder. Leaderboards, on the other hand, teach healthy competition with colleagues.
Being too competitive, however, especially with one’s teammates can be a problem, and thus gamified eLearning courses usually include activities where winning is impossible without teamwork, in order to keep the spirit of competition in check. Teamwork and collaboration are necessary qualities for one’s success in the corporate world and reinforcing these will go a long way by transforming learners into efficient and productive employees.
Curiosity is another one of the basest driving instincts in human beings. By giving learners the freedom to make multiple choices, the consequences of which they might not know, gamified eLearning courses intrigue learners. Every choice they make helps them learn something, which is the whole point. In a way, it is teaching learners to explore their options in real life and be curious about learning new things.
We live in a world which has a number of social constructs, like laws and rules. Following these laws and rules help us to be productive members of society. Different environments have different rules of different magnitude, for example, answering your phone in the middle of a meeting will be, at best, frowned upon and repeatedly will likely get you fired. Gamified eLearning courses make the use of rules too, and different environments can have different rules. This teaches employees to be aware of what they are doing and where they are doing it at all times.
Using gamification has lead many companies towards success as it works on the very principles of how human beings learn. However, it depends completely on how it is applied and on the context. It is not a magic pill and there are a number of gamified eLearning projects that fail. The better the research, planning and implementation, the more likely organizations are to get positive results.
The following are the most important benefits of gamification strategy:
Gamification makes learning more fun, which makes it likely for them to be more engaged with the program.
Daniel Brown is a senior technical editor and writer that has worked in the education and technology sectors for two decades. Their background experience includes curriculum development and course book creation.