Gamification

Staff training trends that have been going on in 2016

We all have heard about training and retraining within companies. This part of the job that usually happens in the first 3 months of the job and that sometimes is useless and worthless. Well, according to Jason Hanold training is not useless at all. In fact, a big mistake in companies is that they do not pay enough attention to the training and retraining of new and old staff. Companies that do dedicate efforts and budget to this dynamic see their profits grow in an exponential way.

We have seen many things happening in 2016 that have to do with human resource issues and corporate hiring. Many companies are switching to teleworking while others are just not paying those amazing salaries that used to be the norm back in the day. Other companies have been innovating in their work spaces and the perks they give to their employees. In summary, training and staff education have become very important lately and it can be seen in the many different approaches to employee development that companies use to train their staff.

Let’s take a look at some trends that have been the norm in 2016 and may be the next big thing in 2017 for training and staff development.

  1. Fast track learning: also called Bite-sized learning. Today´s fast and rapid world calls for fast and pragmatic solutions. Training and learning modules need to adapt to suit the fast-paced world we now live in. they also need to be available almost anywhere, at home or in the mobile phone. It is important to understand that training does not work like one size fits all clothing. People learn and acquire information in very different ways. The trend for this year has been that flexible approaches to corporate training are the ones with better success rates because they can adapt to the needs of every individual within the company. They can adapt the speed at which topics are presented to conform to the learner’s needs, make use of more or less repetition to reinforce learning, and bring back content that learners show weakness in. all this gives the learner the possibility to pace him or herself and to receive information in a more effective way .

  2. Mobile training: also called M-learning, or Mobile Learning. This goes hand by hand with the bite size learning because it gives the possibility to reach all the employees on their mobile devices. As more jobs move away from the traditional office-based ‘nine-to-five,’ mobile learning, or ’m-learning’ is getting ever more popular. Of course, everything is mobile and almost every product or service has a mobile component. So why should training and staff development be any different?  With people working flexible hours across a number of locations, working from home or spending a lot of time on the move, the availability of learning programmes on mobile devices means they can do their training at a time and place that suits them. This trend has been growing as mobile technology becomes part of our lives. Jobs and employees are now using this mobile technology to include their responsibilities in their lives and to take their work to more comfortable places. L&D departments can implement campaigns across geographical locations and reach all their personnel in real time.

  3. Gamification:  Gaming is a huge industry right now and is earing millions and millions of dollars in simple not so mentally challenging games. Take for example Pokémon Go, a game that leads people to unknown locations to find a virtual character. Indeed gaming is now part of our lives. Games have been a traditional strategy when it comes to teaching and the best training courses are the ones that are dynamic and include games in their curriculum. What games bring to the table is a more gamified user experience that becomes entertaining and educative at the same time. Games engage people and the trend this year has been to try to achieve the same level of engagement gaming providers enjoy with their audience. This approach, known as ‘gamification’, makes use of tools and techniques rooted in an understanding of human behaviour, motivation and engagement so they can be applied to the corporate training world within the company´s classrooms in order to make training more fun and effective and make it a productive part of the working life and not only a step that has to be taken in order to start working in a company.
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Image courtesy of Toshiyuki IMAI at Flickr.com

These trends will surely survive in 2017 and will become more important as years go by. Of course, there are other topics that also need to be addressed in order to have the best training course in the corporate world and make the company the most profitable and efficient the market.

Take a look at this article to find out more about training and development.

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How Gamification will make you improve your Human Resources

What is Gamification?

Gamification is the concept of applying game mechanics and game design techniques to engage and motivate people to achieve their goals in non-game scenarios. This concept taps into the basic desires and needs of the user impulses which revolve around the idea of Status and Achievement.

It is a very practical technique to take advantage of big data, and it is a powerful tool for motivating better performance, driving business results, and generating a competitive advantage between employees. By capturing and analyzing the big data on behaviors, companies can create a more engaging experience that motivates employees. But this also works with users. It is expected that big data have a significant impact on sales on the 75% of the companies, by the end of the year. Gamification includes a number of psychological concepts, especially regarding motivation, behavior, and personality. Deep fluency and understanding of these concepts is one of the most important keys to proper implementation.

How to implement it?

For instance, this method offers new ways to align candidates with organizational goals. Instead of telling an employee that he is not meeting the company expectations, it is better to say that he did not clear the second level of the game. Instead of creating performance ratings, Human Resources can create transparent leaderboards with badges attached to each level, so that an employee knows how he or she is doing in his business unit, region, country or globally, and compare himself with other employees, as if they were players inside guilds. If an organization has an internal social media portal, the conversations and chatter around the game could be redirected to create employee engagement.

With employees

Using this method you could improve HR talent acquisition and management, by turning the hiring process into a gamified experience. For example, by rewarding prospects with both acknowledgement and tangible rewards for completing each step. Providing incentives helps to attract qualified candidates from the start. HR teams can also use gamification internally to reward top recruiters and incentivize employees to refer top candidates, like a sales function. The opportunity for an employee to earn Referrer of the Year status can encourage employees to take a more active role in talent acquisition, relieving some of the pressure from the HR department itself.

Your HR department can use gamification to promote a positive corporate culture by rewarding employees for cross-departmental collaboration, providing process or product improvement suggestions, for example, participating in company-wide volunteer programs. Track these activities and showcase employee participation to their coworkers, using a gamified platform, to provide intrinsic motivation. As an added benefit, the platform maintains a record of all employee activities in the program, which is quite valuable information when it comes time to consider promotions, raises and other tangible rewards.

Certain mandatory HR training like harassment, diversity and other compliance programs, are often not high on most employees’ priority lists, because they don’t see a relationship to their day-to-day job duties. Use gamification to motivate them to take time out of their busy day to complete these programs. Employees who earn rewards and recognition for having completed these tasks, or missions in the gamification lexicon, are far more likely to make it a priority. And, HR benefits from the ability to check those boxes for compliance in a timely fashion. And like mandatory training, mandatory paperwork and administrative requirements are off-putting for employees. Similar to training applications, rewarding employees with incentives for completing required forms can create a friendly competition where employees try to outdo one another for the prize.

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Image courtesy of Patrick Haney at Flickr.com

Jason Hanold explains that using gamification, HR departments can create transparent mission-based career paths, that show the steps employees have taken to level up in the organization, for example on what does it take to become CEO, like a road map to success. By showcasing this in a gamified platform, the employees can see what it takes to become the top salesperson. You can even design such programs to allow team members to recognize one another for contributions made toward a common goal. And, again, all of this data is traceable, creating a valuable historic record to capture employee and organizational knowledge.

With customers

A gamification platform could require users to log in with a valid email address or social media credentials. Using that, your company is able to gather data on that person and see what they do on your website. Each person could be associated with clicks, points, badges and achievements, all of which generate big data, valuable customer information and insights for your company. Even more, behavior analytics software can measure customer engagement, behavior, growth and user activities. This could be used to create missions for customers, like players attempting to achieve a goal within the rules and have a stake in the outcome. The rewards should be more than smiley faces and thumbs up and likes. They should be prices and things you could take to the bank. Also, gamification can help you remind your customers that you are present and engaged with them in order to stay in their top of mind.