Gamification through a Learning Management System (LMS) is fast becoming a must-have for enterprises to engage today’s modern workforce that expects more interactivity and mobile collaboration in the workplace.
As Gamification continues to build strong in-roads into corporate training, it has become increasingly important for Learning & Development (L&D) leaders to explore how the mechanics of gaming boost employee engagement and influence their learning outcomes. Organizations have slowly yet successfully warmed up to the concept of Gamification. Leading organizations are now looking to invest in the development of game-based learning and training programs, further enhanced by Gamification enabled learning platforms to leverage the intrinsic values and engagement factors associated with gaming. Gamification in Learning then is no longer a novel concept, but a workplace must-have.
The global Gamification market (valued-USD 5.5 billion in 2018) it estimated to grow by 30.31% by 2024, driven by smart phones and mobile devices that have created a large base for Gamification market. Games can be incredibly motivating and empowering, not to mention the fun elements associated with today’s highly interactive games. With engagement (or the lack of it!) crisis rising, our retention rates and attention spans steadily decreasing, Gamification can truly be the savior for organizations looking to boost learner engagement, motivation, and drive sales, collect key data, or solve business issues.
The term ‘Gamification’ was first coined by Nick Pelling in 2002, and can be simply defined as the application of game mechanics to positively influence user behavior in a context that is not game based; which is just a fancy way of saying ‘let’s play a game!’ in a more corporate (learning) environment.
Gamification, which is the application of game mechanics in a non-game context to promote desired behavior and drive learning outcomes, has many advantages that can have lasting impressions on the learners’ ability to seek learning opportunity and effectively retain information. Certainly, competing and earning rewards, and sharing the achievements look way more exciting than; and this excitement easily translates into increased motivation and participation.
Here are five ways Gamification can build a positive learning experience-
1. Improve Competitiveness & Goal Setting
Competitiveness is intrinsic to humans. We are naturally aligned to improve, adapt and evolve. Gamification leverages this built-in quality to motivate and push learners to perform better.
A learner, when competing with oneself, almost always shows some kind of improvement. And, just like we compete with ourselves, we compete even harder against others. Leading social media platforms are the best examples in terms of setting competition for Likes, Shares and Followers.
2. Drive Knowledge Retention
Although engagement and attention are important factors, they rarely account for anything until the learners’ are truly retaining knowledge in the long term. Gamification helps learners’ retain knowledge effectively by making the learning process more fun and positively impacting their learning behavior.
Any activity that stimulates us (like a game) cues our body to release endorphins when we have a sense of achievement, just like completing a level or unlocking a goody. This endorphin release makes Gamification in learning more enjoyable as well as helps learners retain information in the long run. Here’s how you can bring in Learner Engagement the FOMO way.
3. Enable Instant Feedback
Instant feedback is key for learners to know about their progress and performance. Through Gamification, learners can instantly know the results, like points or badges earned on course completions, rewards achieved, leaderboard positions, etc. This makes the identification of skills-gap easier and faster, thus enabling agility in the L&D function, as well as time saving, as less time is spent in measuring improvement areas.
With Gamification, employees can work together in real-time to achieve measurable targets, while getting feedback when those targets are fulfilled or not. Besides, Gamification can also put to rest the rumors and arguments about favoritism when it comes to performance reviews by enabling learners to view their progress in comparison to others.
4. Encourage Collaboration & Team work
Gamification also plays an important role in fostering team work and collaboration. After all, people no longer play games in isolation, but as part of a group or community (PUBG!). Gamification in corporate learning gives learners a sense of belonging to a community or a team that competes (internally & externally) for better results. This, in turn, builds loyalty and an incredibly positive user experience. Shared tasks, goals and achievements can go a long way in brining employees together to achieve the ultimate business objectives.
5. Increase Learner Engagement
Engagement is everything when it comes to corporate training. Learners’ attentions are always wavering (by no fault of their own) and the prime objective of any effective learning program is holding their attention. Gamification does just that by driving learners’ engagement through an incentive-based approach, thus making it more important for learners to be attentive and complete courses. So, as the learners are more attentive they will easily consume information.
Gamification, as an engagement tool, will drive learners on a daily basis, enabling setting of tangible goals and rewards once completed. Gamification fosters competition for positive reinforcement by constantly generating motivation. Trough Gamification, the workplace becomes more proactive and collaborative as well as rewarding, where learners are able to track their progress in real-time; all of which drives engagement to the fullest. Here’s how UpsideLMS brings about Learner Engagement and Motivation.
Today, Gamification is being strategically used in many industries, including government, military, healthcare and others. Furthermore, the advent of Artificial Intelligence (AI) has enabled developers to enhance better Gamification features, adding increased creativity and diversity.Social Learning, to some extent, has also propagated the adoption of Gamification as learners can now share their achievements.
More importantly, Gamification has the capacity to improve training programs and processes that can, in turn, meet the modern learners’ demands and drive the bottom line. An employee is more likely to retain the provided knowledge when it comes in a more structured format with clear goals (game finish line), breaks down the learning (game levels) and reinforces the knowledge (game rewards/ points). Gamification has the capacity to help organizations build learning programs that engage employees, motivate them and drive knowledge retention, which ultimately maximize productivity, performance and the ROI.