The gamification of education: an innovative way to engage your staff


So what is gamification?

Gamification is a simple idea. It is all about designing certain activities to be more like games. Humans relish competition and being rewarded, so in doing this, activities become more appealing. Over the past few years, businesses have started to use gamification to encourage their employees to give those tasks the same focus they give to games – and to make them more enjoyable as well!

Gamification has many uses, from marketing to recruitment. Even more exciting, it has the potential to improve on-the-job education and training and make it more fun.

At Personal Group, we began using a gamified e-learning system in July as part of our own employees’ training, and we have already seen huge benefits. The number of logins to the training system has more than doubled, and the number of modules completed has increased threefold.


How does gamified-education benefit businesses?

There are two main ways in which gamified-learning benefits businesses. Firstly, it greatly increases a business’s ability to train its employees. A number of firms have already seen dramatic results from adopting gamified-education. When Walmart gamified safety training, a very important but arguably slightly boring task, they saw a massive increase in activity. This had a big impact on the company’s bottom line as safety incidents decreased by 54%, massively reducing the number of days workers took off due to injury.

The second big benefit revolves around employee engagement, incentivisation and retention. The process of learning itself promotes wellbeing and self-esteem. Staff who are regularly exposed to new ideas and ways of doing things are more stimulated at work than those who keep doing the same tasks the way they always have. As stimulated workers are more productive workers, gamified learning has the knock on effect of boosting productivity and reducing staff turnover.

How do you gamify learning?

The key is incentivise users to progress to new levels and outdo each other. So how does that actually work?

Our e-learning modules are structured into levels that must be unlocked and completed. Every time one of our employees views a new section, progresses to a new level or completes a task they are rewarded instantly rewarded in the form of points and badges. All the while, the system creates a friendly sense of competition by grouping employees into teams and tracking each team’s progress on a series of leaderboards.

We also have a management portal that allows our supervisors to check if any of our staff are struggling. If someone has opened and closed a particular level several times without finishing it, a manager can send the same task in a different format to help with understanding. Or, if someone is putting off doing their mandatory training, a manager can send them a gentle reminder.

How do I gamify my company’s e-learning?

There are a number of companies in the market offering different approaches to gamification. At Personal Group, we use a great platform called Growth, but there are a number of other fantastic options out there including Sponge and Cognify. Check them out and see if they might work for your company!

Author: Katrina McMahon.

Katrina is Marketing Manager at Personal Group, a leading UK provider of business services, including employee benefits and insurance products.