Game-Based Learning and Gamification

One of the themes of this year’s Excellence Conference is this: learning doesn’t have to occur in a classroom to be effective. Of the variety of learning methods, games are a powerful tool to help engage learners and support the learning process. And use of games is deeply tied to engagement.

One session at the 2016 HCM Excellence Conference, titled “Game is Not a Four Letter Word,” focused on the power that game-based learning can have on your workforce. Featuring speakers from Genpact, Raytheon, and Holden International, there were many practical examples for how to use games to engage learners and drive performance.

How to Use Games for Learning

Below is an overview of the programs that these three organizations used to deliver high-quality learning experiences for employees.

Genpact, the first company highlighted in the session, discussed the virtual reality game designed to help managers learn the key skills necessary for leading effective teams. This allows users to practice new capabilities in a “safe” environment, helping to hone delivery and improve confidence.

Holden was the winner of a Gold Award for Best Program for Sales Training and Performance.  The Holden Adaptive Platform, created in partnership with Tata Interactive Services, utilizes game-based learning simulations that deliver relevant, right-sized bits of information that sales people can apply in real time. This led to several improvements in business outcomes, including larger deals, 15% higher win rates, and 15% higher client satisfaction scores.

As a $23 billion global aerospace and defense company, Raytheon often works with the US Military to develop training solutions. One initiative, focusing on training learners in a simulated environment, earned Raytheon a Silver Award. Patriot missile crews were trained on proper reloading procedures using a 3D, virtual interface with multiplayer support for up to five students at a time. Using 3D scanning and motion capture, developers are able to create realistic details from clothing and movement all the way to facial expressions and posture. The customer’s words upon seeing the training in action: “This is the best money I’ve ever spent.”

Meeting Business Needs

The critical thing to remember is that this isn’t about building a great gaming experience for learners simply to help them complete more courses. It’s about helping the learners to achieve greater business results, as evidenced by the examples provided above.

Has your organization explored games as a method for improving learning and performance? If so, what have been your findings ?

Ben Eubanks, Learning Analyst, Brandon Hall Group

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