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Gamification Use Case: How To Offset Employee Disengagement With A Gamified Learning Portal Approach

December 28, 2018 | By Asha Pandey


Gamification Use Case: How To Offset Employee Disengagement With A Gamified Learning Portal Approach

In this article, I share a use case on how to use gamification to engage your disengaged employees and provide better motivation plus a stickier learning experience. The use case showcases how gamification aids you in creating a high impact training.

Ways To Offset Employee Disengagement With A Gamified Learning Portal Approach


Introducing a series of use cases by EI on various facets of online corporate training to create a more immersive learning experience.

See how you can leverage on these use cases to enhance the impact of your online training.


The Challenge

The problem of disengaged employees is very real and poses a persisting challenge that can defeat the purpose of a training program. Despite millions of dollars on training spend, L&D teams often lament on this challenge.

So, the question is what learning strategies will excite the learners and deliver the desired learning experience and performance gain or even trigger behavioral change.

Gamification In Corporate Training To Your Rescue!

Why Gamification?

If you were to ask an employee the top two things that motivate him or her, you are likely to hear recognition and rewards.

It comes as no surprise that what motivates employees needs to be part of the learning strategies so that we have an engaged and motivated audience for the training.

This is where gamification for learning fits in, and I will showcase this in the gamification use case later in the article.

What Is Gamification And How Can It Be Used Effectively To Step-up The Online Training Impact?

Gamification in online training involves the use of gaming principles to create an immersive and engaging learning experience.

It helps learners engage better, it is immersive, and creates a higher recall, retention, and application of learning on the job.

Gamification techniques can be used effectively to provide a fun-filled learning experience and:

  • Meet the learning outcomes, exactly as in traditional eLearning
  • Help learners apply their learning by handling real-life situations in a safe, though controlled, environment

Game mechanics: At EI, our gamification practice focuses on its use for serious learning so that at the end of the learning journey, the learner meets specific outcomes.

Our courses are typically driven by a narrative or a story for the learning path, and the key elements of the game mechanics that we use are:

  1. Challenges (learning goals)
  2. Levels (learning path)
  3. Instant feedback (to aid progress)
  4. Scores (accomplishment and gratification)
  5. Badges (for significant achievements)
  6. Leaderboards (for analytics)
  7. Competition (to assess where you stand against others)
  8. Collaboration (when multiple teams play)

I will showcase a few of these techniques in the gamification use case later in the article.

How Can You Use Gamification To Impact Learner Performance And Behavior?

Besides being fun, engaging, and motivating, the right usage of gamification techniques in online training help you meet the stipulated learning outcomes.

It provides the following 5 key benefits:

  1. A More Engaging Learning Experience Equals Higher Recall And Retention
    The usage of gaming elements provides an immersive environment for learners wherein they learn and have fun.
  2. The Gamification Approaches Put The Learners In Relatable Situations That They Would Encounter In Real-Life
    It helps them practice safely as they understand the implications of their choices. Such learning experiences help them retain knowledge better than traditional learning strategies.
  3. Effectively Designed Gamified Courses Can Influence And Drive A Change In Learner Behavior Over Time
    Instant feedback helps learners understand if their decisions were right or wrong. Furthermore, gamification uses concepts of spaced repetition, which is an effective approach to bring about the desired change in their behavior.
  4. Gamification Can Be Applied To Address All Kinds Of Corporate Training
    Great use cases of gamification include induction and onboarding, soft skills training, professional skills training, product training, sales training, and even compliance.
  5. While Gamification Resonates Well With The Millennials, You Would Be Surprised To See Even Other Learner Profiles Respond Favorably
    Badges, awards, and leaderboards draw diverse learner profiles, typically have higher engagement, and demonstrate better completion rates.

Now, I share a gamification use case that features a combination of gamification and microlearningrendered in a gamified learning portal format.

Key highlights of this gamification use case are:

  • Learner profile
    Designed primarily for the millennial workforce, this gamification use case shows that the approach resonates well with other learner profiles too.
  • Use of partial gamification techniques
  • Leverage on microlearning
    The learning nuggets are provided to the learner through a gamified path and the assessments feature diverse formats of gamified quizzes.

Gamification Use Case: A Gamified Learning Portal Featuring A Microlearning Approach For Induction And Onboarding

At EI, we had been using a face-to-face training delivery for our Induction and Onboarding program since our inception in 2002.

In the early years, when the team was small, this approach worked well and enabled us to complete the exercise in time. With the significant involvement of key stakeholders, the program delivered a high-impact training and built strong bonds with new employees.

Challenge 1

As the team grew and the intake of new employees became staggered, we started seeing challenges like:

  • Delays in timely completion
  • Inadequate time spent by managers
  • Inconsistent messaging

Action Taken

Nearly 6 years ago, we changed the model to a blended format, with a significant part of the training going online, and this did offset some of the challenges.

Challenge 2

However, after some time, I started getting feedback from our Head of Operations and the HCM team that the program was not delivering the desired value anymore.

The Reason?

In the last 3 years, our learner demographics had changed dramatically to include millennials – over 70% of our team is now millennial. They found the approach a bit too prescriptive, flat, and not engaging enough.

What Is the Solution That Can Deliver The Required Results?

A Gamified Learning Portal Featuring A Combination Of Gamification And Microlearning

We went back to the drawing board and created a learning design that will appeal to both learner profiles, millennial and non-millennials. Additionally, we wanted to select an approach that will have a longer shelf life.

Furthermore, it should enable us to update individual nuggets with ease so that we can keep the information current.

The Outcome – A Gamified Learning Portal Based Approach Featuring

  • Blended training
  • Multi-device support
  • Learning journey

The Key Highlights Of The Gamified Learning Portal Based Approach

  • Gamified learning journey
  • Microlearning (Includes Virtual Reality and varied formats of video-based learning)
  • Gamified assessments
  • Leaderboards and stats on performance
  • Social learning
  • Gateway for further learning (to our learning exchange)

Here is a glimpse of the gamified learning journey featuring multiple tracks to learn during the 4 weeks of the program:

Gamified Learning Portal Based Approach

It includes stats on the learner’s performance, leaderboards, and social learning as shown here:

Gamified Learning Portal Based Approach

Here is a sample of one of the many gamified quizzes used in the portal:

Gamified Learning Portal Based Approach

The induction and onboarding journey features 23 microlearning nuggets in varied and very interesting formats.

I have selected a couple of nuggets that use a Virtual Reality (VR) and animated videos based approach.

Gamified Learning Portal Based Approach

Gamified Learning Portal Based Approach

Gamified Learning Portal Based Approach


The Impact?

  1. Learner Reaction
    Resounding positive feedback that the program is engaging, relevant, and in sync with the expectations of modern learners. They also liked the flexibility to review the microlearning assets on their smartphones.
  2. Learner Engagement
    Across the board, we got great feedback from our surveys and through online comments on the microlearning nuggets (what they liked).
  3. Learning Impact
    We got back to a timely cycle of completion of the induction and onboarding program and, thereafter, a better assimilation of the new inductees as per our plan.

I hope this article and the featured gamification use case gives you adequate insights on how you can convert your disengaged employees to highly engaged and motivated employees through the stellar combination of gamification and microlearning (as a gamified learning portal).

Not only can you apply this approach to your induction and onboarding program, but it also can easily be adapted to your other corporate training needs.

If you have any queries or need any specific support, do contact me at apandey@eidesign.net.

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