Getting employees excited about training can be a big challenge. One smart solution is to wrap the learning content into a serious game. Once the first hurdle is overcome and people are willing to learn, the benefits unleashed by serious games within the organization are extraordinary and extrapolate to professional and personal life, as they resonate beyond the working environment.
Below are eight of the most relevant advantages to note:
Serious games for learning represent a safe space where everybody is allowed to fail, make mistakes, correct themselves and stand up again. The elimination of the fear of failure is a key factor that contributes to strengthening self-confidence. This is boosted by continuous testing without repressions in a context that is very similar to reality.
In the context of serious games, the process of self-confidence growth takes place while submitting to several multiple-option tests, playing the games over and over again, setting personalized learning goals and enthusiastically accepting feedback.
Another clear benefit of serious games triggered by the permission to fail is a more confident mentality, on account of the iteration concept behind the games.
A high-quality authoring tool that provides serious games for learning and allows the organization to adapt the content according to the employees’ performance enables the user to gradually acquire technical, safety or soft skills literacy. This equips them with the needed confidence to master skills within a controlled environment.
If the game is captivating and the imagery immersive and realistic, the user will want to repeat and reach the established target, sometimes even proving there is a way of “beating” the boss. Serious games for learning also help the participant to make informed decisions, become agile under real situations and consolidate skills by repetition. Permission to fail is granted and making mistakes is encouraged, which leads to successful learning through fearless repetition.
Another great advantage of serious games for learning is the flexibility of being able to adapt the game to any level, age and skill set. Just like life itself, the serious games for learning platform must be open to modifications of the content and adaptable to the next levels, preparing the user for progressive difficulty and increasingly more interesting challenges. This flexibility mirrors the mindset of the employees, who will understand the malleability of a tool that lives and evolves through the content they feed into it.
Having an adaptable solution for training provides the employees with two key benefits: the authority over the tool, giving them the freedom to modify its content when needed, and the high flexibility that gives them control over when and where they learn.
When operating in an interactive context where immersive environments come into play, with avatars and situations similar to reality, the user tends to be fascinated and engaged, increasing the odds of retention.
What makes the information memorable and the learning efficient is not only the engaging environment the learning context is depicted in, but also the interaction with real-world situations — and that is how serious games make the experience unforgettable.
A great balance between rich visuals, well-adapted training to people’s roles that manages to bridge skills gaps, and a constant interaction with practical situations, are just a few of the variables that drive high knowledge retention and lead to a successful training initiative.
Gaming encourages better brain connectivity, as shown in a scientific report detailing how the brain is positively stimulated when playing games.
When subjected to entertaining and engaging contexts where the employees have the chance to learn and experiment with new concepts without fear, the motivation to experiment further also increases, leading to the production of grey matter and implicitly boosting productivity at work. An employee who has the chance to upskill feels valued and appreciated and offers to the organization, in turn, a higher efficiency in their work.
Moreover, when the training process provides the freedom to pick one’s own learning path, this contributes to boosting employees’ motivation and productivity, which supports broader business goals.
An improved hand-eye coordination has been observed in gamers, according to one study, which emphasizes that dexterity and problem-solving skills are enhanced through playing. For this, a series of surgeons have been tested with video game usage. The outcome was impressive, as 27% of the gamers proved to be faster at advanced surgical procedures, committing fewer errors compared to surgeons who did not immerse themselves in gaming.
Therefore, implementing serious games in companies will not only boost learning, but might also result in several other positive effects: speed, efficiency at work and better hand-eye coordination.
The serious games implemented into any business need to strike the balance between great visuals that captivate the eye and targeted learning content that make the users feel they have filled the gaps they had before taking the training. If these two aspects meet, then engagement is guaranteed, proving once more that pleasure can go hand in hand with practicality.
Engagement is the key element to promoting a longer time within the app and carrying out repetitions until the concepts are mastered. The individuals that actually play, repeat and keep on testing are the ones that best acquire intellectual and social skills, according to The Independent. Therefore, implementing a learning tool that is based on gaming methodology within the organization can mean more sociable and emotionally intelligent employees.
Many companies think twice when they check out the prices of the different eLearning platforms and might even contemplate going one step backwards by implementing a traditional method, assessing it as more economical. This might be the initial impression before evaluating the true outcomes of an authoring tool that offers flexibility and autonomy. However, it is worth considering the effects long term — having a collaborative platform where anybody in the company can edit and create new training at any time, provides unlimited learning opportunities for upskilling or reskilling and reduces the expense of facilitators, which considerably reduces the price and provides real return on investment for the service.
In the revolutionary learning context of serious games, making mistakes is no longer punished, but encouraged, as it boosts the problem-solving skills, the agility when real problems arise and helps employees take on board the learnings derived from their own decisions. Creativity, problem solving, proactivity, agility, anticipation and strategic thinking are just some of the benefits unleashed by a successful implementation of serious games for learning in companies. This translates into lower turnover rates and higher long-term productivity across the organization.