Gamify Training and Induction for Your New Hire

Posted in Talent & Onboarding

If you weren’t able to make it to our Gamification event or would like to learn more about Gamification and your workplace – this is for you! At our ‘Gamify your new-hire training’ event, we heard from internationally acclaimed gamification expert Yu-Kai Chou, who successfully pioneered the Octalysis framework. He spoke about how to apply the Core Drives of Octalysis and how gamification principles can help to engage employees in tasks and different types of learning. Let’s take a look at the key learnings from the day! Key educational learnings from Yu-Kai’s keynote Isn’t gamification just for Millennials? Not at all! Studies show that while the under 35-year-olds make up 57% of gamers, a whopping 23% of gamers are above 50! It’s amazing to think that just a few small tweaks in your training and induction could make such a huge impact. Gamification works well for the older generation because they want the same opportunities to learn an be recognised. Recognition ties into gamification because humans love to be motivated. We thrive on it! What do you need for gamification to be successful? In short, the minimum requirement for successful gamification in your workplace would be to make sure you understand the learnings and behaviours you wish to influence. From there, it’s designing a smart and intuitive UX and UI, understanding the tech platforms you wish to use, and truly dive into the motivational psychology of your employees. THEN it has to fit in with your business goals and systems, and of course, have a measurable ROI. That’s where Enboarder comes in. How can gamification help employee engagement and productivity? Gamifying your training will create a new experience for employees. Traditional ‘classroom training’ will soon become 2 or 3-minute blocks of bite-sized information over the course of a week, a month, a year or even longer! The length of time is up to you! Another thing that was interesting that gamers do is called ‘Grinding’, which in the workplace we call ‘Grunt work’. This is basically a ‘gaming loop’, which for gamers is throwing a stone at a bird over and over to unlock an achievement, which is essentially the same thing as HR checking a database for staff day in and day out. Gamification can help alleviate the ‘grunt work’ if a reward is to be given. ‘Congratulations! You’ve moved up to level 4’ etc. What do you see as the biggest issue when companies implement gamification? One of the biggest issues when it comes to implementation is there is a lack of human-focused design for both tasks and work. Design, at the core, should be based on human feelings. We need to be open to asking ourselves ‘how do I feel during this’ instead of basing decisions on simply what is easiest, or cheapest. At the end of the day, investing in your staff IS an investment in your company. Skipping the human focus aspect won’t help you in the long run, even though it may be the easiest route originally.

What different types of motivations sit behind successful gamification? There are 8 different motivations that sit behind the amazing rollouts of gamification. Yu-Kai explained those motivations as follows;

  • Meaning: Ask yourself ‘what do I give of myself’ instead of ‘what do I get out of it’. It’s a simple task that often gets overcomplicated. It all comes back to treating your employees like you treat your customers, the same goes for how you design the gamification aspects.
  • Accomplishment: It’s important to make sure your people feel accomplished by what you’re asking them to do. Small rewards, badges or achievement symbols will empower your staff, and help them feel like they’re accomplishing something by doing that training, but make sure you don’t over-reward!
  • Empowerment: Empowering staff to give feedback and to be creative is a great way to achieve this step. Keep training fresh and exciting! Remember, some games require changes to stay exciting, and some don’t.
  • Ownership: Ownership and possession are also equally important. You want to make sure your staff have ownership over what they’re doing, especially after spending so much time learning or building something!
  • Social Influence: Ask yourself ‘is what I’m building going to make a positive impact’. Staff will talk. It’s good to make sure they have something amazing to talk about!
  • Scarcity: You don’t want to over-saturate and over-deliver content to staff. Think of it like having a game on a table – you don’t always want to play it, but if it’s behind the glass – you might want it more.
  • Unpredictability: Keep aspects of your training gamification unpredictable. Have you ever watched a movie or TV show and thought ‘wow, I just need to know what’s going to happen!’. It’s the same for gamification! Wanting to know more about the topic keeps people wanting more!
  • Avoidance: Knowing you should do something, but don’t end up doing it can be an issue. That’s why keeping it fresh and being accountable is important.

How do we balance employee benefits as an extrinsic motivator (like pay etc) with intrinsic motivators (like meaning etc)? Yu-Kai spoke about companies needing to be careful when it comes to explaining benefits. Studies showed that if you don’t meet expectations, especially around benefits, then there is a negative effect on staff motivation. So meet expectations and check out industry competition and standards – then drive intrinsic motivation for long-term benefits from staff. What tips can you give for creating an engaging onboarding and induction experience? The big learnings for the day and the reason we got together for the event, was to create and discuss engaging employee experiences. The lesson we discovered was that people like to learn from listening to stories, watching others do things and then by doing it themselves (trial and error). An example of this using Enboarder is assigning a Buddy to your new hire to help them learn and guide them through the beginnings with your company. Think about how you could create engaging content pages to deliver success stories from other employees, too! What tips do you have for training and onboarding millennials? Millennials need to feel heard. They crave the ability to share and because of this, can often feel like no one is listening. This can become a challenge for organisations. Especially with the influx of uni-leavers into the workplace. Yu-Kai’s biggest tip was to give them more opportunities to be involved, ask for feedback and listen to them. They will feel more motivated when they feel included. Inclusion inspires innovation! You can check out all Yu-Kai’s work here. Who is Yu-Kai Chou? Yu-Kai Chou is an author and International Keynote Speaker on Gamification & Behavioural Design. Yu-kai was rated #1 among the “Gamification Gurus Power 100” by RISE, and was awarded the “Gamification Guru of the Year” Award in 2014, 2015 and 2017 by the World Gamification Congress. He is the Original Creator of the Octalysis Framework and the author of ‘Actionable Gamification: Beyond Points, Badges, and Leaderboards’. He is currently President of The Octalysis Group and the Founder of Octalysis Prime. Enboarder Learn Announced! After we heard all about the Octalysis Framework, our CEO and founder Brent Pearson revealed what our ‘Next Big Thing’ in employee engagement would be. Introducing ‘Enboarder Learn’, an idea that will change how your employees engage with their learning, induction and training within your business. Enboarder Learn could be used for just about any educational scenario you can think of, not just onboarding and induction, which is one of the reasons why it’s so powerful! (Think compliance training, yearly Work, Health & Safety training, etc) To wrap up the day, we spent our time workshopping new and unique experiences for Onboarding, Induction and general Employee training. We got to hear some amazing ideas for how to ‘WOW’ employees in new and exciting ways! We are really grateful for your ideas and contributions, especially around Enboarder Learn. Thank you for helping us shape the future of Enboarder. Want to learn more about Enboarder?


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