• Learning and Development

7 Ways to Use Gamification in Online Training

What is Gamification in Training?

As remote training continues to gain momentum, the issue of employee engagement comes into question. In fact, companies worldwide lose an astonishing $13.5 million per year, per 1000 employees as a result of ineffective training.

Enter gamification. But beyond a buzzword, what actually is it?

Gamification involves turning any form of learning or work activity into a game, or adding game-like elements to make the experience more interactive. In training, gamification incorporates gaming components in its strategy and can be used for a range of areas including onboarding, employee engagement, improving sales, compliance, and leadership programs.

Since gamification is based around people’s behaviors and intrinsic motivators, when employed correctly gamification can create a unique and extremely effective learning experience.

What are the Benefits of Gamification?

Gamification is fun. To be exact, 83% of employees who receive gamification training feel motivated. Since one out of three employees say that uninspiring content is a barrier to their learning, it’s more important than ever to create exciting, incentivizing training content. Some of the other benefits of gamification include that it can: 

  • Increase productivity. Some 89% of workers say they would be more productive if their work was gamified.
  • Improve employee happiness. Gamification involves releasing neurotransmitters that make us feel good.
  • Increase retention. Gamification can increase employee retention by up to 90%. Since only 12% of employees use skills taught in learning and development (L&D) training in their jobs, increasing retention is vital. 
  • Help to address the ineffectiveness of current training programs.
  • Enable personalized learning through real-time and flexible assessments that evolve to meet the needs of the learner.


7 Ways to Use Gamification in Training

1. Create Challenges or Quests

Challenges can help maintain learners’ interest in the training process and topic. Start with easier challenges that most people will have no trouble completing in order to boost morale and confidence from the beginning. This will help them overcome any self-doubt that may exist to complete more complex challenges down the track. 

Tip: Use Panopto’s smart chapters to clearly separate each challenge in order of difficulty.

2. Track progress visually through leaderboards

Using a leaderboard to track progress helps to tap into the learner’s inherent motivations – everyone enjoys recognition and praise. A leaderboard can also be highly effective when used with a competitive group who are motivated by winning. In addition, tracking progress can also help identify learning trends and any gaps in knowledge that need to be addressed while working towards set goals. 

Tip: Use Panopto’s analytics to determine which learners are engaging the most with the video and track this against their progress.

3. Offer rewards or medals

Offering virtual or physical rewards such as medals or tokens can be beneficial by acknowledging personal achievement and providing positive reinforcement. This could be for something small such as completing a task, or achieving extra credit by working on a bonus assignment. 

Tip: Ask employees to complete training assignments with video. The employees who participate and engage with their colleagues’ videos (by rating and sharing) can be rewarded.

4. Create virtual scenarios or role-play

Immersive content that replicates real-world scenarios can be incredibly powerful and effective, however, not all businesses have the resources to create a full simulation game. Other scenarios such as branching scenarios give learners a multi-stage test and can require extensive planning.

In terms of opportunities that anyone can implement, roleplaying is a great solution for learners to easily simulate their knowledge.

Role-playing can put employees in potential situations where they can apply their new skills, enabling training specialists to analyze how workers would respond and provide direct feedback.

Tip: Ask employees to create a short video in response to a typical scenario that they may face in their position. They could also utilize 360-degree videos for a more interactive experience.

5. Embed action-based content unlocking

In the same way that you need to defeat the dragon in Donkey Kong 64 in order to move to the next level, enabling action-based content unlocking provides an engaging alternative to traditional training. 

Tip: Embed Panopto’s in-video quizzes at the end of each module that must be successfully completed in order to move on to the next stage.

6. Provide immediate feedback

Feedback is essential for learners to know how they are progressing or how well they are retaining information when training using any method, including gamification. When critique is provided quickly, learners are able to know if they are heading in the right direction and make appropriate changes if necessary.

Tip: Use Panopto’s discussion feature to immediately add comments, start discussions, and reply to comments on videos.

7. Give learners a choice

Similar to a choose-your-own-adventure video game, provide learners with a number of options to choose from in order to reach their end goal. This way learners can feel in control of their own learning process and feel ownership over their choice.

Tip: Try offering learners the opportunity to either complete a test, make their own short video, or watch a video and provide feedback – all to display their understanding in a range of ways.


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