Some of the biggest challenges I notice in conventional workplace training programs include earning employee engagement and increasing knowledge retention. If we throw in an assessment at the end of an unsuccessful training program, we run the risk of uninspiring employees and losing their participation.
So what should training programs look like instead? Consider that 89% of respondents in one small survey said they are more productive at work when learning is gamified. I have seen firsthand how gamification has become a key element not only to increase the enjoyment of training but also to engage an employee’s willingness to learn and look forward to an assessment.
The Role Of Gamification In Training Assessments
Training gamification is the usage of gaming elements to engage and entertain learners. Instead of teaching a session with a standard presentation, individuals can be taught through gameplay and motivated through points, levels, badges, certificates, leaderboards, and prizes.
To better understand your training’s performance, implement assessments to gauge how employees best retain and interact with the learning sessions. Assessments can also help trainers evaluate what elements within the training were too challenging or not effective in order to improve the game design.
Training leaders can also utilize gamified training to:
• Improve learner engagement and retention.
• Generate effective user feedback.
• Engage employees regardless of age and background.
• Enhance the company’s bottom line by investing in every employee’s success.
• Develop remote e-learning formats.
• Remove or reduce employee stress regarding having to take a “test” of their abilities.
I recommend using assessments before, during and after a training session to fully take advantage of the employee’s engagement and participation. With the right gamified training strategy, training leaders can impact the learning experience while also having a little fun.
Five Ways To Implement Gamified Assessments
Now that we’ve covered why games are important, the next step is implementing gamification into training sessions. Different gamification elements play on our intrinsic and extrinsic motivation needs by rewarding ourselves or generating feelings of accomplishment. Depending on the training’s goal, training leaders can use both types of motivation to inspire productivity within the session.
Whether starting from scratch or applying gamification elements into an existing training course, here are a few of the elements you can implement in assessments:
1. Points: Consider awarding points each time a learner completes a task or reaches a skill within a training session. While points give learners a clear view of where they stand, they also help create a healthy level of competition between peers.
2. Levels: These help to establish a learning path and give recognition to employees for achieving new skills. Not only is there a sense of accomplishment each time they pass a level, but employees also feel motivated to keep moving forward.
3. Badges and certificates: When a learner reaches a certain goal, badges and certificates are a great way to recognize noteworthy achievements. Use badges for minor milestones to help track progress and motivate employees to continue through the training. Certificates are a great way to show off an employee’s expertise and training completion.
4. Leaderboards: Often containing top scores and stats, leaderboards offer an analytical view of how well employees are performing among peers. Leaderboards encourage employees to compete for first-place status and be more publicly recognized. Showcase these after each assessment or on a level-basis.
5. Rewards: Offer rewards throughout your training based on monumental actions or achievements. Rewards provide extrinsic motivation for incentivizing the learner’s time, skills and effort. Rewards can come in various forms like a gift card, pizza parties, lunch with the boss, days off, an advantage in the next course and more.
Motivate The Workplace With Gamified Assessments
Gamified training assessments can be deployed via e-learning, virtual classrooms or in-person training. Regardless of the venue, training leaders everywhere can join the increasing number of corporations using it more and more for topics such as onboarding, sales and product training, leadership development, safety, security, compliance, systems and processes, customer service and many other training topics, tapping into a learner’s intrinsic and extrinsic motivation and recognizing accomplishments every step of the way.
First Published for Forbes Human Resources Council by The Game Agency’s Head of Creative Strategy & Innovation Stephen Baer as a member of Forbes Human Resources Council Member