Currently one of the hottest ideas in L&D is adapting the principles of gamification to increase engagement and participation in Learning and Development opportunities. By introducing positive and enjoyable aspects of game play, facilitators and instructional designers are finding fresh ways to inject elements like competition, ‘leveling up’, quests and rewards, as a means of enhancing educational resources, increasing learner retention, and boosting engagement and participation. This video is an excellent general talking point around the positives and pitfalls of gameification and what it’s all about.
Is your organisation using gameification? What successes have you had?
There are basics that everyone needs to have in the back of their mind before they design or deliver any learning and development resources. Without engagement, repetition and a real understanding of how the skills and knowledge provided can benefit the trainee, learning outcomes will be compromised and retention is not a given. Ensure that you don’t overlook the basics before you move on to the more complex aspects of creating best practice training materials.
The basics all L&D professionals should remember when creating content and training
The biggest mental barrier to creating videos as learning and development resources is the perceived need to invest excessive time and money into unfamiliar and highly technical equipment and software to produce a premium product. Videos can be hugely expensive, and creating a micro-learning gallery of videos can be perceived to be well beyond the reach of smaller organisations. Costs incurred in instructional design, filming, editing and final production values make companies that are dipping their toes in the online learning environment very reluctant to move in any direction where ROI can be complicated to calculate, and upfront costs are many and varied.
This is an outdated stigma. Video doesn’t need to be this complex to create. It doesn’t need to be expensive and involve a lot of heavy production values to make it engaging, informative and effective. An excellent example of this is the Paperslide video series; these training videos are created in one take using a mobile phone, immediately removing the financial barrier of entry for smaller organisations looking to begin offering resources in this format. They are visually engaging, and cleverly utilise the short time given to the micro-learning topic presented.
There is no longer any excuse not to embrace video as a part of your learning and development offering, and to do so on a minimal budget with highly effective results.
The future of L&D is here now: while Gamification is still too expensive for many organisations to fully embrace and pursue, there is a need to adopt better analysis of training metrics, offer more flexible mobile learning access as well as provide micro-learning to complement the medium, and to personalise offerings to ensure that you don’t have a one-size-fits-all mentality to staff development. There is no reason why your organisation can’t be adopting and adapting new ways to boost and measure the effectiveness of your development offerings.
The future is now
Gamification is definitely a subject I am interested in doing more with professionally. There is a reason why so many people (77% listed in the below infographic) choose to spend their time gaming. The personal rewards and enjoyment that come from ‘levelling up’, discovering new capabilities and progressing in the game due to increased skill all sound like music to a trainer (and training designer)’s ears!
Clearly industry leaders are pursuing gamification as a means of developing their staff, the infographic lists Deloitte, IBM and Xerox as pioneers in this field, and I look forward to seeing what comes from development and research into this area over in the near future.
Gameificiation in eLearning