Category Archives: Gamification

5 Game Elements that create effective learning games

You must have heard the phrase: learn by playing. This is not just a saying, but it actually works, as games help in the production of dopamine in the brain that stimulates attention and induces learning.  

And with the revolutionized gaming industry, even educators can learn a lot and apply the strategies to make the teaching effective. But before dwelling on that subject, one must understand the elements that create effective learning games.  

So, without wasting time, let’s know more about them.  

  1. A well-crafted story 

Who doesn’t love a good story? People live for stories. And when a story is introduced in the game, it helps the player feel more immersed in the game. It provides them a meaning, and they understand what is needed from them. And most importantly, the learning aspects become far easier than including just a handful of facts.  

While doing so, the developer must take care of 4 areas: character, plot, conflict, and resolution. Yes, a gaming story does demand a lot of creative thinking, but it is certainly worth the effort. 

  1. Great visuals 

Just like a story, even the aesthetics pull people towards the game. One has seen the immersive experience it creates for the gamers in games like PubG, but it is equally important in learning games. Statistics suggest that visuals increase the willingness to read by 80 percent and comprehension by 95 percent. Also, kids follow directions better with visuals than just text.  

In fact, Quodeck can help you design your gaming platform to create interactive experiences for the learners so that they engage with it easily.  

  1. Interactive gameplay 

Players are usually the actors in a game. And hence, it is essential to keep them involved to stimulate maximum learning. It is best to keep passive activities at the minimum and to make the game as interactive as possible. 

For instance, a traditional technique usually involves making the learner watch a video and understand what was done correctly and incorrectly. But in the case of interactive gaming, the learner will walk through the particular scenario and decide what should be done.  

Infact, there are several ways in which games can be made interactive. These include role-plays, puzzles, competitions, etc.  

  1. Challenge the learner  

It is also essential to keep the learner engaged in the game, and the best way to do that is by challenging them from time to time. But it is necessary to keep the challenges balanced. Challenges that are too complex will make them feel frustrated, and they may lose interest. Hence, it is good to start with simple requirements and test the learner at various stages to ensure that the right level is set.  

  1. Introduce a Reward 

Learning in students is often enhanced when linked to some reward that they win through the game. One approach to reward can be when they complete cumbersome or menial tasks. Also, the reward should be linked to performance, rather than mere competition. In this way, the learners will be encouraged to give their best, and by doing this, they will even start learning better.  

In the end  

To summarise, each of the above-mentioned gaming elements motivates the players and stimulates learning in them in a playful manner.  It is now high time that educators work in collaboration with the designers to make learning easy and fun.  

And of course, with the presence of multiple gaming elements, it is difficult to decide a perfect fit. But with constant testing and tweaking, it is possible to create a successful learning game.

How to drive more engagement out of your sales training in 2021

Engagement is one of the most important metrics to analyze the effectiveness of a training program. Engaged users are motivated, inspired and have a high willingness towards performing well. While developing a sales training course for your workforce in 2021, you must keep in mind that getting higher levels of engagement can be tricky because of various constraints. In this article, I will be highlighting a few, very interesting ways by which you can address the above issue and encourage a fun environment during the sales training. 

Storytelling:

An artform which is a two-way interaction between a storyteller and the learner. The interactive nature of storytelling partially accounts for its immediacy and impact. At its best, storytelling can directly and tightly connect the teller and audience. Relatable characters help the learners immerse themselves into the situation of the protagonist as their personality resonates with that of the character. Elements like story structure, emotional connectivity, real life challenges, use of multimedia components make sure that the learner is kept engaged throughout and can achieve the set goals. 

Personalization of training:

Personalization of training is the customization of training so that it is aligned to meet a specific learner’s needs. A highly learner-centric approach, personalized learning makes the training sessions highly relevant to the learners leading to high engagement. As trainers you must let your learners be flexible with your course, they should be able to choose their own device, their learning path, manage their timelines, learn at their own pace, and set their own milestones. 

Gamification elements:

Leaderboards are a great way to introduce healthy competition amongst the learners. This element of challenge encourages learners to do better than others thus improve the level of engagement throughout the batch. Rewards and recognition promote good work ethic and a sense of socialization within the company. Every learner wants to show off their achievement and share their accomplishments with others. This creates an environment where everyone wants to do well and demonstrate how skilled they are. 

Application of learning on the job: 

Provide job aids in your training program which could be used by the learner in the most practical sense. Your sales workforce is on their feet, the whole day interacting with different stakeholders. The training course should be designed in a way that salesperson could refer to the job aids to complete an important task during his/her day. This creates value of the training course in the minds of the learner and will improve motivation and engagement. 

Learner Feedback:

Learners should be encouraged to provide their feedback on different aspects of the sales training regularly. This will not just help in improving the course and fill the loopholes but also reassure the learners that their inputs are valuable and that they are a part of the process itself. This feedback needs to be used to upgrade the system and build on the research that was initially done on the learner profiles.  

There are various strategies which could be used to achieve higher levels of engagement and high immersive experiences. As the marketplace is evolving, the trainer needs to step up with their sales training programs which require effective strategies to drive readiness for the sales teams they support. Take into account the characteristics and personalities of your learner, conduct a discovery process, build and improve at each step of the learner journey. The elements mentioned in this article could be a solution to the challenges involved in engaging a learner during the sales training process by turning routine tasks into fun activities that give your learner a sense of confidence

7 gamification trends to follow in 2021

Gamification is likely to fill in the gaps that were not earlier considered. The gaming factor is positive and good. Here are 7 gamification trends you can follow in 2021.

Games tend to be fun and engaging, which has paved the way for the popularity of gamification across multiple sectors. After all, gamification can turn a boring task into a refreshing one. Gamification has been around for quite a while, especially in the academic sector. In recent times, however, it has become rather mainstream.

Therefore, it does not seem like gamification would become obsolete any time soon, and the trend is likely to go on in the near future.

What exactly is gamification?

Gamification is just a technique where the designers integrate non-gaming settings with gameplay elements. This ensures better user experiences with any product or service. For example, in a business, gamification can help keep the team motivated and provide them with various incentives.

Gamification can be as simple as integrating badges and leaderboards into a system that already exists.

What are the top applications of gamification in 2021?

Various gamification trends have emerged in recent times. Some of the applications of gamification are:

Remote onboarding

Lately, work from home has become extremely popular across different sectors. As an increasing number of activities have gone digital, so has onboarding. Various companies are onboarding their new employees remotely, through mobile apps.

These apps come with features such as trivia-style games, team rankings, and provisions for challenging colleagues. This helps to build a sense of belongingness and team spirit from the very onset.

Digital events

Currently, there exists a constant need for sophistication in a fast-paced world. As a result, an increasing number of companies are holding their events and meetings online. This trend has grown significantly more potent during the pandemic.

This is because face-to-face meetings became almost impossible. As a result, a growing number of companies have started to utilize video conferencing. Consequently, video conferencing has become increasingly popular among companies.  

Virtual learning

Virtual learning programs have been around for quite a while. One of the key benefits of this mode of learning is that it comes with ample scope for gamification. Students can interact with gamified pieces of information. This is much more interesting than learning statically.

Virtual reality-based games help to understand new concepts without many hassles. Thus, it appears that gamification would remain a part of virtual learning for years to come.

Combating disinformation

In today’s world, disinformation has become a burning problem in society. There is no shortage of hoaxes regarding crucial matters on social media. Various organizations have come up with gamified applications to fight disinformation. These enable the user to have fun while spreading correct information on various matters.

Investment

A large section of society finds interest in investment as a mode of earning. However, not everyone understands all the concepts of investment, which deters many from investing.

Currently, there are easy-to-use gamified apps that help the users to invest seamlessly. Although investing in stock trading may be confusing for those new to it, such apps help make it fun.

What are the top gamification practices to implement?

With gamification growing increasingly popular, several strategies and techniques have emerged. Therefore, it is logical to implement gamification in your organization in the right manner. It would help your business reap the benefits of gamification to the fullest. Some of the best gamification practices are:

  • In a workplace environment, competitive gamification is a good approach to increasing productivity. However, you must not celebrate only the top performer. Make sure to reward all the participants in some way as long as they performed well too. This would help to boost engagement and reduce the chances of demotivation. 
  • Try not to overemphasize the rewards. Funding big rewards can be inefficient in terms of costs in the long run. Moreover, focusing too much on the incentives would make the employees fix the wrong goals. Rather than being more productive, they would focus on irrelevant activities just to win the rewards.
  • Be creative and careful while choosing the rewards. Not every type of reward works in every scenario. Try to keep the rewards connected to the business. It would be smart to reward the performers in ways that would help them gain professional recognition. Simple rewards, such as an invitation to a guest blog, a shout-out at a meeting, or a LinkedIn recommendation, can be highly effective.
  • Track the gamification program and the performance of the team to check how successful the gamification is. It also helps the participants gain insights into their own qualities and understand how they can improve themselves.

Conclusion

These are some of the top gamification trends and techniques that one might follow in 2021. Building and implementing the right gamification strategy is crucial. It would provide a a significant boost to the business. 

5 Reasons Why You Should Implement E-Learning

In our previous blog, we discussed how onboarding training can boost efficiency and productivity in your organization. As new learning methods have grown in popularity, more and more businesses are realizing the advantages of e-learning. Although online learning can be costly to implement, it pays off every time an employee completes their courses. Virtual learning is not only less expensive than traditional learning, it’s efficient, and reduces instruction time significantly.

Here are 5 reasons that will help you understand how switching from traditional learning to e-learning can benefit your organization.

  1. Improved retention and consistency in learning

In traditional learning, you usually have an educator who has his teaching tools, methods, and approaches. Employees may find it hard to adjust to new learning methods while simultaneously absorbing the information educators share.

One of the advantages of e-learning is that it can provide important information in ways employees can understand easily, which results in improved retention. Content is simplified using podcasts and interactive modules. Employees can access their learning when their energy and focus are at their peak for retention. This nature makes it easier to retain the new concepts and, of course, to implement them in their work.

  1.  Providing new learning methods

Not everyone learns in the same way. Some people prefer to retain knowledge through videos, while others prefer written notes, and still, others require realistic opportunities for practice before they truly grasp a new skill. One of the most significant advantages of e-learning for employee training and development is the availability of a wide range of content formats. These new learning methods are engaging for everyone when it includes videos, notes, infographics, games, and other types of content. 

An increased engagement is a sure sign that employees want to finish their course. Apart from this E-learning enables you to update the material whenever necessary. This means the online learning courses can be adapted along the way as it is relatively simple to make changes to online material, particularly textual changes, online courses are always up to date, and employees are not provided with information that is no longer relevant to them.

  1. Gamification and interactivity

Some new skills require more than video notes. Active employee participation is required in learning new skills. The ultimate interactivity and practice can be provided through a powerful learning management system (LMS) that supports gamification, quizzes, branching scenarios, and surveys. Interactive e-learning courses enable employees to practice new skills in a secure place, so they are set up for success in real life. Furthermore, by using a variety of assessments such as quizzes and case studies, you can engage learners as they progress through the training.

  1. Collaboration and community building

Learning can be solitary, but social exercise shouldn’t be so because employees learn much more by interacting with their colleagues than by reading a book. New learning methods lead to discussions and discussions lead to innovation.

Online learning benefits the community and leads to collaboration. Including activities such as forums for discussion and live tutorials can be immensely beneficial. Commitment to other employees encourages collaboration and creates a team culture that showcases its benefits beyond the educational environment.

  1. Immediate feedback and acknowledgment

Another advantage of e-learning in the workplace is that employees have access to immediate feedback. Immediate results from online assessments assist employees in determining how well they are doing and which sections of learning material they may need to review before moving on. Furthermore, gamification features in courses such as leaderboards, badges, and certificates give employees a sense of recognition and achievement, which motivates them to learn. Timely and automated feedback is beneficial not only to employees but also to their managers and the business. This is due to the fact that it eliminates the need for manual feedback and grading.

Conclusion

Learning is an ongoing process and as time changes we all have to adapt to the new virtual learning. Online learning programs apply to every industry, business, and employee worldwide. These learning methods are convenient, easy to access, easy on the budget, and measure results while keeping a digital record for everything. E-learning is cost-effective, improves employee performance, reduces staff turnover, and boosts productivity.

Why should you pay more attention to the on-boarding of your new hires?

Onboarding new employees is not just briefing about the office; but integrating them into the business. The onboarding process should start from day one. Starting a new job is baffling for any employee, so it is the employer who makes the employee feel comfortable from the day they arrive and ensure that their worries are eased. The onboarding process should start as soon as the employees are offered a new role. Employees tend to stay for a longer period if more attention is given to the onboarding process.

Any reasonable employer will understand that employees are the backbone of the organization. Without good employees, the organization may rise financially but it doesn’t lead to growth and development if employers don’t consider their employees enough and this includes the way they are treated when they first sign the contract.

A strong onboarding process can ease anxiety and stress, by making the new employee feel welcome from day one. Employees feel valued if they are treated with respect and a good onboarding process can help to achieve this. If low retention is seen, it is time for employers to look carefully at their onboarding processes and make necessary changes. Here are some reasons why you should pay more attention to this process.

1. It’s cost-effective

Hiring an employee is a long process which comprises of putting up the ad, interviewing the candidates, shortlisting, negotiating salary, providing the setup. Onboarding process ensures that all the hard work doesn’t go waste. Paperless onboarding is also a way of minimizing cost. Instead of overwhelming an employee with a lot of information on the very first day, sending documents to go through becomes easier.

2. Improves retention
Onboarding a new employee is creating a good impression even though it is not just a day process. An employee gets the idea about the organization on the website but briefing personally has a different and positive impact on the employees. It’s a crucial phase where expectations are set, concerns are clarified, directions are given, and culture is instilled. If you are unable to create a comfortable environment, the risk of losing an employee increases before one can significantly contribute to your goals. A strong onboarding process improves retention as the employee feels a part of the organization.
3. It boosts productivity
Newly joined employees get overwhelmed when they try to absorb all the information in one go. This results in lower productivity. A good onboarding process includes a clear structure that helps new hires ease into the role and responsibilities. Details can be provided in stages instead of explaining all in one day. This helps in faster learning and the employee remembers the information systematically. Instead of providing theoretical knowledge of a task, if the employee is trained while performing the task, it would lead to better results.
4. Builds good reputation
An employee’s experience during onboarding, whether good or bad, can easily creep its way to review websites and social media networks, and this can affect how job seekers and clients perceive your organization. Making a successful onboarding program motivates the employee and fosters a feeling of pride in working for the organization. This further results in employer branding and creating a good reputation.
5. Creates brand champions
When onboarding an employee, you must clearly state what you stand for as an organization and explain how the new hire can contribute to that. Also provide an experience to make your employees, firm believers of the organization. This creates motivation which goes beyond the paycheck they receive. The onboarding process makes employees feel that they are an essential part of the organization and encourage them to work with dedication.
Employee onboarding is more than just communicating company policies, setting up workstations, and office introductions. It is the process which would lead to further outcome of the employee, be it positive or negative. And thus, a lot of attention needs to be paid on the process.
References:
https://www.tanda.co/blog/five-reasons-to-do-employee-onboarding-right/
https://recruitwrite.com/why-employers-need-to-pay-close-attention-to-the-onboarding-process

‘Karma points’ keep employees motivated

Gamification encourages healthy competition, and the immediate incentives range from gift vouchers to virtual one-on-ones with the CEO for racking up a certain number of ‘karma points’

Mumbai: About four months ago, helping a colleague out or going above and beyond the call of duty only earned Sukrit Sarkar, 24, a pat on the back. Now, the associate product manager at HR platform Springworks earns points every time he does something to help a team member. Sarkar had the most points, 300, until another colleague overtook him on the leaderboard last week.

Appreciation is fuel in any organization, but while working from home, it’s often easy to miss thanking that one team member who goes the extra mile. Companies such as Proctor and Gamble and Goodera as well as startups like Springworks have turned to gamification to induct new employees, motivate existing ones, and run training modules remotely during the covid-19 pandemic. Gamification encourages healthy competition, and the immediate incentives range from gift vouchers to virtual one-on-ones with the CEO for racking up a certain number of ‘karma points’.

“When you work from home, other people on the team don’t know what you’re doing. And it’s nice when your teammates recognize your contribution,” says Sarkar. “In the physical office, we’d chat or congratulate one another. That was missing.”

Bengaluru-based Springworks built a gamified peer-to-peer recognition platform called Springengage in late April after its staff moved to working remotely. ‘Kudos’ (appreciation and gratitude for help) from a fellow employee earns the person 10 points, while a ‘shoutout’ (when someone goes beyond his or her role or does something that helps the company) brings in 100 points. The scores are displayed on a leaderboard, which creates a healthy competition.

“It has helped me keep motivated during these times. It has made us more curious about each other’s work. If someone gets a kudos or a shoutout, I want to know how the person solved the problem,” says Sarkar. Recently, he redeemed half his points for a ₹500 Amazon voucher to buy a book that was long on his wishlist.

Game-based activities are also helping companies induct new hires and interns, all of whom are rejoining work remotely now. For the first time in its history, Procter & Gamble India inducted 90 interns into a two-month stint virtually this year. To ensure learning and collaboration was engaging and interactive, a gamified module was created on its app. As the interns completed mandatory and optional training courses on the app, answered quizzes and challenges, they accumulated points. This was tallied on a leaderboard on the app with the top scorers getting gift hampers.

“We wanted to innovate and truly translate our on-ground ‘GetIn’ onboarding programme to a fully virtual experience. Gamifying the experience with deliberately planned touch-points increased the overall participation and engagement on the app. This also created a sense of community, drove engagement and motivated interns,” says PM Srinivas, head, HR, India sub-continent, Procter & Gamble.

At Goodera, gamification has worked to get its young staff to interact again, and ease work stress. Over the last few months, the tech company working in the space of CSR has rolled out a virtual volunteering facility. While employees met all their deadlines, moral seemed to be flagging during the lockdown. So, founder Abhishek Humbad introduced virtual volunteering for his team. But it really took off when employees could earn ‘karma points’ for individual and team effort, social impact of the voluntary work and more. The points, which reflect on a leaderboard on Goodera’s internal platform, earn employees gifts, ecommerce vouchers or a virtual one-on-one meeting with the CEO. “People notice what others are doing, and it also nudges them to do more,” says Humbad.

Webinars and informal Zoom meet-ups are losing novelty. “Gamified content gives a sense of micro achievement, which makes people feel good,” says Arijit Lahiri, co-founder, QuoDeck Technologies. The Mumbai-based game learning app creator has seen its turnover double since the start of the pandemic, he says, adding that clients are requesting casual games to fit into a storytelling format.

Rajib Chowdhury, founder, TGC Technologies, which helps companies create gamified activities, however, says companies should not get swept away by gamification and ignore other aspects of deeper employee engagement. “Companies have to be clear about what they want to achieve from the whole exercise. Besides uplifting morale, companies need to focus on creating purpose,” he says.

By Reshmi Menon, journalist at livemint.

This article was first published on livemint

7 Gamification Techniques For Corporate Training That Work

While gamification has been in use for corporate training for several years, there is still a lingering doubt on its impact. In this article, I share 7 gamification techniques for corporate training that work!

What Gamification Techniques For Corporate Training Still Work?

Gamification techniques use elements and principles of gaming to create an engaging learning experience. Some of the associated gains are:

  • Higher learner motivation (to participate and complete).
  • Higher engagement levels.

Gamification techniques can be effectively used to:

  • Have fun and learn.
  • Apply their learning on the job (by providing them practice zones featuring scenarios, similar to what they will handle in real life. Here, the learners can practice and hone their skills in a safe environment).
  • A longer-term implementation of gamification techniques can influence behavioral change.

So, How Can You Make Gamification Techniques Work In Corporate Training?

Let’s take a step back and identify what the expected gains are from any learning strategy.

Your list is likely to read that it should be:

  1. Motivating
  2. Engaging
  3. Relevant and relatable (preferably personalized)
  4. Challenging
  5. Rewarding

It must:

  1. Create sticky learning
  2. Facilitate the application of learning
  3. Provide room for practice and proficiency gain
  4. Provide reinforcement to ensure the “forgetting curve” does not step in
  5. Trigger behavioral change

How You Can Use Gamification Techniques For Corporate Training To Influence Each Aspect

  1. Step 1
    Identify barriers (intrinsic or extrinsic) that might be hindering the required changes and thereby improve the learners’ motivation levels.
  2. Step 2
    Generate interest in learning by providing relevant and personalized learning paths.
  3. Step 3
    Create effective learning experience using scenarios, simulations, and challenges.
  4. Step 4
    Provide feedback for performance improvement that can help learners pause and think or recalibrate their way forward.
  5. Step 5
    Use rewards and recognition to sustain the learners’ momentum and motivation, and ensure that learners walk away with a sense of accomplishment.
  6. Step 6
    Implement repetition and reiteration for successful change in behavior.

What Is the Impact You Will See If You Apply the Right Gamification Technique For Corporate Training?

Through the right gamification technique, you can:

  1. Create a sticky learning experience
  2. Provide reinforcement (to offset the “forgetting curve”)
  3. Ensure the successful application of learning on the job
  4. Influence or trigger the desired behavioral change

How Can This Value Be Delivered?

At EI Design, our gamification practice is nearly 5 years old. During these years, we have created successful corporate trainings that have leveraged on gamification techniques at several levels, including:

  1. Partial gamification (to enhance traditional eLearning courses)
  2. Gamified aids to support ILT
  3. Gamified learning path
  4. Game-based learning
  5. Gamified portals

Our Next Gen gamification techniques build up from the success of the current approaches. For instance,

  • Instead of just having simple badges and leaderboards for each challenge, you can put the learner through a more complex narrative that can truly challenge him or her. The narrative is selected based on the content type, learner profile, and is aligned to the learning goals.
  • Personalization holds the key to the learner’s attention, engagement, and motivation. You can use mobile apps for learning to offer a personalized learning path that is aligned to the learner’s goals. Thereby, it is relevant and more engaging.
  • You can use a combination of learning strategies to gain higher impact. For instance, the usage of immersive techniques like a Virtual Reality (VR)-driven learning path that is gamified will surely multiply the impact and help you meet the learning goals.

7 Next Gen Gamification Techniques For Corporate Training

You can opt for the following 7 Next Gen gamification techniques for corporate training and achieve your mandates successfully:

1. Longer-Term Gamification

Behavioral change requires the use of gamification over a long period of time. You can use this longer-term learning path to have milestones over successive weeks/months/quarters.

2. Periodic Checkpointing Of Learners’ Progress

Alongside, plan for a periodic assessment of learners’ progress (against the required outcomes) that can range from learning acquisition, its application, or a behavioral change.

3. Multiply The Impact

To make the learning journey more engaging, you can add immersive approaches like Virtual Reality or wearable tech in your fold.

4. Leverage On Microlearning-Based Gamification

Give the learners a “bite-sized” gamification experience.

5. Personalized Gamification

Offer personalized learning and gaming paths for learners.

6. Social Media-Based Gamification

Let the learners collaborate with peers or experts and address challenges or solve problems, much the same way they need to in real life.

7. Invest On Niche Gamification Portals

These can be designed to offer customized learning paths and elements of gamification, microlearning, and social learning.

This Seems To Be Too Good To Be True; Is There A Catch?

Over the years, I have seen several views (or misconceptions) associated with gamification techniques for corporate training.

I share 5 myths and contrast them with facts to highlight how you can make gamification techniques effectively work for corporate training.

Myths And Facts #1

  • Myth
    Gamification in eLearning doesn’t really help learners learn.
  • Fact
    Gamification is not just about having fun. Much like traditional eLearning, it can be used to meet specific learning outcomes.

As I have highlighted, you can map the learning goals to a gamified approach to gain better engagement. It also creates a far more sticky learning experience. The use of gamification techniques over a period of time will influence learner behavior as well.

Myths And Facts #2

  • Myth
    Gamification cannot drive learner performance.
  • Fact
    Several aspects of learning, including retention, an application on the job, as well as behavioral change can be influenced by gamification.

The Next-Gen gamification techniques for corporate training (highlighted earlier in the article) show you exactly how this can be achieved. 

Myths And Facts #3

  • Myth
    Gamification doesn’t provide real value to learners and businesses.
  • Fact
    Both learners and businesses see value in this approach at several levels.

Learners love it as learning is fun, challenging, and rewarding. L&D teams find value in it on account of its wide application across varied corporate training needs. The correct gamification technique can help them deliver their goals (learning, its application, or behavioral change).

Myths And Facts #4

  • Myth
    Gamification can’t drive learning.
  • Fact
    Gamification can provide an effective approach to drive learning.

This is on account of its inherent features that resonate with learners and help them perform better.

Myths And Facts #5

  • Myth
    Gamification appeals only to Millennials.
  • Fact
    The correct usage of gamification techniques will ensure that it will be well received across the multi-generational workforce.

I hope this article will help you use gamification techniques extensively for your corporate training and my 7 gamification techniques for corporate training will help you make it work well for you.

By Asha Pandey, Chief Learning Strategist at EI Design

Reasons to Use Videos for Employee Training

Creating training videos is one of the most effective ways to develop your team, both in terms of cost and engagement. This Video highlights 6 reasons why Videos for employee training is important for their development.

eLearning Trends In 2019: How To Use Them To Enhance Your Learning Strategy

At this time of the year, you look out for trends that can enhance your training delivery. In this article, I share the eLearning Trends in 2019 you can use to enhance, measure, and maximize the impact and returns on your learning strategies.

eLearning Trends In 2019 You Can Use To Enhance Your Learning Strategy

As I began my exercise to predict eLearning Trends in 2019, the fourth one in this series, I took a step back to see why anyone seeks upcoming trends.

The top 5 reasons why L&D teams look at trends are listed here. They prompt them to adopt new or better approaches that:

  1. Keep the learners engaged.
  2. Ensure knowledge acquisition happens.
  3. Facilitate the application of the acquired learning on the job.
  4. The desired performance gain and ROI occurs.
  5. A positive ROI on training spend is established.

In this article, I take this need as the thread to share the eLearning Trends in 2019. I have grouped them as follows:

  1. Section 1: I list the trends that help learners learn and, more significantly, apply this learning to show better performance or the required behavioral change.
  2. Section 2: I list trends featuring learning strategies with a proven track record of delivering a better engagement quotient and higher training impact.
  3. Section 3: I follow this up with a list of trends that organizations must invest on to measure, enhance, and maximize the impact of their training.
  4. Section 4: I wrap up with trends that are clearly emerging as front runners for investment in the very near future.

With this approach, I am confident that the featured eLearning Trends in 2019 in this article will offer tremendous value in enhancing your learning strategies in the New Year.

Upcoming Release: I also have a free eBook on eLearning Trends in 2019 releasing on Jan 15th.

  • Designed as a guide that you can practically use, it features a typical learner journey that highlights how modern learners learn and what they wish to see in their online training delivery.
  • I use this backdrop to highlight how the featured eLearning Trends in 2019 can be used to add value to learning and its application plus measurement and further gains.

Without further ado, here is my list of eLearning Trends in 2019 banded logically to facilitate their impact and application.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Section 1: The Trends That Help Learners Learn And Apply This Learning To Show Better Performance Or Behavioral Change.

  1. Mobile Learning
  2. Digitalization of ILT (to Blended or Fully Online)
  3. Performance Support Tools
  4. Informal Learning
  5. Social Learning
  6. Self-Directed Learning

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Section 2: Learning Strategies With A Proven Track Record Of Delivering A Better Engagement Quotient And Higher Training Impact.

  1. Microlearning
  2. Gamification
  3. Video-Based Learning (Videos and Interactive Videos)
  4. Mobile Apps for Learning
  5. Personalization
  6. Curation and User Generated Content

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Section 3: The Trends That Organizations Must Invest On To Measure, Enhance, And Maximize The Impact Of Their Training.

  1. Learning Engagement Platforms – LXP
  2. Learner Analytics
  3. Big Data-Reporting and Analytics

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Section 4: Other Notable Trends To Watch Out For—The Future Is Here!

  1. AR/VR and MR for Immersive Learning
  2. Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Learning

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Section 1: The Trends That Help Learners Learn And Apply This Learning To Show Better Performance Or Behavioral Change.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #1: Mobile Learning

Over the last 4–5 years, the adoption of Mobile Learning has been on the rise. This is on account of the flexibility it provides to learners (learning on the go, multi-device support – including smartphones, tablets or laptops/desktops, and anytime and anywhere access).

From an organization’s perspective, this is clearly an approach that resonates better with learners, offers higher engagement, provides better completion rates, and can be used to support both formal and informal trainings.

What I see changing in 2019 is the maturing of Mobile Learning solutions, leading to a bifurcation into mobile friendly or adaptive designs and mobile first or fully responsive designs. The latter will align better to the way learning is expected to be consumed (notably on smartphones) and will feature learning interactions optimized for them.

Additionally, Mobile Learning will be used to offer almost the entire spectrum of corporate training needs. It will feature high-impact formats including videos, Microlearning, and apps for learning.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #2: Digitalization Of ILT (To Blended Or Fully Online)

While the ILT mode is not dying, it will soon start getting limited to niche programs. 2019 will see further increase in the Digitalization of ILT (to blended or fully online). Even the core ILT delivery will get supported by online resources including pre- and post-workshop material and assessments.

The triggers include push from learners to reduced training budgets and shorter cycles to train employees.

My assessment is that in 2019, we will see a higher percentage of programs going to the fully online format that can be consumed on the device of the learner’s choice (ranging from smartphones/tablets to laptops/desktops).

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #3: Performance Support Tools

Performance support tools or PSTs are learning aids or job aids that are designed to address a specific learning need.

They are available to the learners within their workflow and hence can be easily accessed and used without having to log on to an LMS.

Designed to support formal training (focusing on knowledge acquisition), PSTs can facilitate learning application thereby improving the training impact and learner proficiency. They can be used to support ILT as well as online training, and they effectively serve as a measure to offset the “forgetting curve.”

2019 will see further adoption of PSTs riding high on the increase in mobile learning, Microlearning, and video-based learning.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #4: Informal Learning

The fact that learning happens through multiple channels (and not just formal training) is an established one.

Many of us may be familiar with the 70-20-10 model for Learning and Development. According to this model,

  1. 70% of the learning is experiential (that is, happens on-the-job).
  2. 20% is through social or collaborative learning (that is, learning with or from others).
  3. 10% is through formal training programs.

While we may debate on the percentages shown here, the model does affirm the need of organizations to create a support system and the opportunities to promote informal learning in their workplace.

The usage of measures like performance support tools or PSTs as well as platforms to promote social learning will see significant increase in 2019.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #5: Social Learning

In our early years, our learning is purely from others and it shouldn’t come as a surprise that this is true for learning at the workplace too. Over the last 3–5 years, L&D teams have seen value in adopting and promoting social learning.

With the options of platforms, next gen LMS, and learning experience platforms, social learning is finally poised for growth in 2019.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #6: Self-Directed Learning

In general terms, self-directed learning is the approach of moving the onus of learning to the learner rather than the teacher. As an extension, in the context of corporate training, it maps to empowering learners to choose how they want to learn.

Unlike training programs that are “pushed” through LMS, self-directed learning is all about giving this control to the learners. They can decide on what they want to learn, how they wish to learn, when they choose to learn, over what time frame would they want to learn and so on.

As you will note, this approach provides control to the learners and gives them the option to decide their learning path. Alongside social learning and informal learning, organizations are recognizing the value of promoting self-directed learning that can help them create learning as a continuum. This trend will continue in 2019.

eLearning Trends For 2019 – Section 2: Learning Strategies With A Proven Track Record Of Delivering A Better Engagement Quotient And Higher Training Impact.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #7: Microlearning

The debate on the value and impact of macro learning (or traditional eLearning) and microlearning (bite-sized, short learning nuggets of 2–7 mins run length each designed to meet a specific outcome) goes on.

However, the fact is that the usage of microlearning-based training has revolutionized training delivery over the last 2 years, and I see this trend accelerating further in 2019.

Today, you can opt for microlearning-based training to offer formal training and informal training and support ILT. Its flexibility to be delivered as a single, short nugget to meet a specific outcome to a learning path that can have an array of learning nuggets makes it a powerful choice for corporate training. I see an increased adoption of microlearning in 2019.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #8: Gamification

Till a few years ago, the impact of gamification-based training had a big question mark associated with it. While gamification provides fun-based learning to users, does it indeed help them achieve a specific learning outcome?

The usage of gamification for serious learning has been on the upswing in the last 2 years, and I see this trend increasing in 2019.

The application of gamification, including the game-based approach, or partial gamification will see an increased application across various corporate training needs. With the reduction in development costs and shorter time frame to develop, L&D teams will see higher value in this investment in 2019.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #9: Video-Based Learning (Videos And Interactive Videos)

Video-based learning is fast becoming a standard piece of online training. This includes its usage in traditional eLearning formats to its extensive usage in the microlearning-based trainings.

In 2019, I see this trend continuing. Equally interesting is the wider adoption of interactive videos that overcome the passivity of traditional videos and increase learner engagement manifold through interactivities and assessments.

Another usage of video-based learning in 2019 will be through the curation of public domain videos.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #10: Mobile Apps For Learning

The widespread adoption of mobile learning and its updated avatar of mobile first or responsive design leads to an important fact that the learning experiences on smartphones must be optimized to the devices. The interactions must mimic the way we use these devices.

On similar lines, similar to Apps that learners use, mobile apps for learning can provide a very effective strategy for online training. The training can be personalized and updated with ease.

The cost and longer lead time to develop mobile apps for learning have led to its limited adoption. I see this as a very powerful approach; I see it play a significant role in training formats.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #11: Personalization

Today’s learners do not have the patience or the attention span to go through learning that is generic and doesn’t map to what they are looking for.

This is where personalization of learning fits in and provides a custom learning path to learners. You can personalize learning based on the learner’s role, proficiency, area of interest and so on.

The Microlearning-based training approach provides the required granularity to draw up highly personalized learning paths for various learner profiles. Rendered over mobile devices, this approach can provide a highly relevant and personalized learning path to each learner.

This trend is worth a watch in 2019 wherein we will also see the usage of machine learning and AI to create more meaningful learning experiences.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #12: Curation And User-Generated Content

While we may be spoilt for choice on data and information that is easily accessible on the Internet, tagging it and identifying the relevant info is a time-consuming process.

Content curation addresses these pain areas and provides relevant learning resources to users. Learners have the flexibility to opt for the recommended learning path or configure their own version.

Furthermore, the exercise also promotes user participation by encouraging user-generated content to keep the knowledge base current and relevant.

This is not all. Content curation enables organizations to tap into resources that are available in the public domain, and they do not need to re-create them.

This trend has been on an upswing, and I see a similar traction in 2019. This too will benefit from emerging techniques like AI for learning, machine learning and so on, to create even more relevant learning paths to the users.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Section 3: The Trends That Organizations Must Invest On To Measure, Enhance, And Maximize The Impact Of Their Training.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #13: Learning Engagement Platforms – LXP

Learning Engagement Platforms (LXP) provide a highly personalized learning experience to users through learning pathways. Besides this, they feature social or collaborative learning, inclusive learning, content curation and facilitation of user-generated content.

In contrast to LMS, the LXPs empower learners to define their learning path from a set of learning assets featuring varied formats. Besides facilitating self-directed learning, they encourage learner participation through user-generated content.

They feature social learning and offer recognition to active participants. They do feature assessments along with badges and certification.

They are fun, more engaging, and relevant for learners, and they will help learners meet specific learning outcomes.

In the short term, including in 2019, they will co-exist with LMS. Many existing LMS players are already offering the LXP option as an add-on. Then, there are new participants that offer AI-based recommendations and aspects like “career pathways” that resonate very well with the learners.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #14: Learner Analytics

2019 will continue to see the usage of learner analytics to review learner behavior and what additional measures can be adopted to increase engagement, motivation, and facilitate the application of acquired learning.

A wider adoption of Tin Can API will provide the relevant cues in this endeavor. Furthermore, the usage of Artificial Inteligence (AI) in learning will further facilitate the usage of this analytics to create more relevant and personalized learning experiences.

I see this trend seeing further traction in 2019, resulting in learning designs that appeal to learners and create the required value and ROI that businesses seek.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #15: Big Data-Reporting And Analytics

Big Data refers to voluminous data that is aggregated from various sources (typically, LMS, LCMS, learning portals, and surveys/polling or assessments in the context of eLearning). Given its volume, complexity, and the fact that it is dynamic, there is no tool that can manage and analyze it.

Big Data-reporting and analytics refers to the methodology to present the data in formats that are actionable. When processed right, this can give us tremendous insights on how learners learn, the impact of training on skills or behavioral change, and the impact on business and eventually ROI determination.

I see an increase in Big Data-reporting and analytics in 2019, leading to further optimization of the training delivery. This analysis can be used to understand learner behavior, the way they want to learn, the learning paths chosen, and how to update the existing training delivery. These cues can then be used to create personalized and more effective learning paths that enable learners to learn, practice, obtain feedback and remediation, and so on.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Section 4: Other Notable Trends To Watch Out For – The Future Is Here!

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #16: AR/VR And MR For Immersive Learning

L&D Teams’ hunt to evaluate immersive learning strategies is an on-going endeavor. Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), and Mixed Reality (MR) are acknowledged as superb approaches to provide highly immersive learning experiences for a few years now.

High price and substantial lead time to develop them have been two factors that have limited their wider usage. Also, the use cases that justify the investment and ROI are limited.

With main authoring tool providers like Adobe and Trivantis getting into VR solutions, the price points have dropped. Their design approach also makes it easier to author these learning experiences in a short time. I see further traction on VR solutions in 2019 as these solutions become more affordable and can be offered to supplement the formal training.

In my opinion, 2019 will see a wider adoption of AR-based training, including mobile apps that embed VR features. The use cases will expand to include soft skills training as well as learning to trigger behavioral change.

eLearning Trends In 2019 – Trend #17: Artificial Intelligence (AI) In Learning

The usage of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in learning is one trend in 2019 that you should watch out for.

AI can facilitate the creation of highly customized learning paths by analyzing the data it collects. This data can then be used to understand the learner’s interest, proficiency, and recommend further learning assets that they may not be aware of. Potentially, personalized learning will not only engage the learner better but also help L&D teams gain the impact they seek.

I hope this article helps demystify the value and impact of each eLearning trend I have listed and provides the context of why you should use them.

By Asha Pandey, Chief Learning Strategist at EI Design

10 best practices to implement gamification

Gamification is not a magic lamp. It won’t solve your problems overnight. But if you plan and use it well, it will serve its purpose.

Here are the 10 best practices which you can use while implementing gamification.

1.Identify the success criteria: Define success i.e. what you intend to achieve through the activity. It is important to know the parameters of a successful outcome. Without having a clear cut desired result, you can’t find out whether the activity was successful or not.

2. Consider alternatives: Always explore the alternatives. DO NOT jump the wagon. Many a times, people ignore simple and effective learning solutions just because they find a new trend catching up. Use gamification only if it makes sense and will add on to the activity. If you think the alternative is much more effective, use that!

3. Creating a tie-in to business needs: Any activity has to tie-in with the business goals. Make sure the gamification also does. Do not use gamification just to make your content interesting. It has no value if it does not push your business forward.

4. Create a story/context: We all love stories! Develop a story around your gamification activity. Tell people the context. Give them a purpose, a reason to interact with your content. Tell them why they are earning points, saving someone or conquering something.

5. Use science to advance learning: Remember the 2 mantras – Spaced Retrieval and Retrieval Practice. Spaced retrieval helps a learner retain access to the memorized information over long periods of time because it promotes a deeper understanding of the learned material. Retrieval practices encourage a learner to recall information rather than simply re-read or re-listen to it.

6. Make scoring and winning transparent: Make scoring easy! The learner should know how his actions are related to the scores. So, he will know exactly what he needs to do in order to be successful. Also, try different scenarios. Make sure you have covered up all the possible issues that could arise when a learner is doing the activity.

7. Keep the rules simple: Really simple! Avoid complexity. Always provide a tutorial so that the learner can learn the rules beforehand and perform better. This will also help you prevent any kind of frustration that a learner might develop due to lack of knowledge of the rules.

8. Keep leaderboards small: No one is really interested in the world rankings unless he’s up there. Keep the leaderboards customizable and personalized. The learner should be able to see his position, his friends’ position along with the top 5 performers.

9. Use levels and badges appropriately: Give the learner a goal and the number of levels he will need to complete before the learning is over. Badges can be tied to either levels or enabling objectives. Badges are also a good way to show off your prowess to your friends and colleagues.

10. Test your game before you release it: It is a good way to find flaws, cheats and shortcuts that you might have overlooked. Human Beings are the most creative and lazy people imaginable as we look for a better/faster way to achieve the same result.

Let us know if you have any more points to add to the list.

By Deepak Gawas, Head- Partnerships at QuoDeck