As already mentioned many times in our JOurnal, the innovation in the field of e-learning has a key role to provide a better training experience. In this frame, gamification in business is going to replace the old learning models, making them definitely more efficient.
Several studies pointed out that it is possible to acquire more than the 90% of notions and knowledge by using gamification mechanisms, in comparison to traditional learning techniques.
WHAT DOES GAMIFICATION STAND FOR?
A crucial aspect is to define exactly what gamification means. As you may guess, it derives from the word “game”; however, gamification has a wider meaning. The gamification represents an extremely effective tool to transmit different kind of messages and to foster users’ active behaviours, in order to achieve specific personal or company’s objectives. The core aspect of this approach is represented by users and their active engagement.
For example, the gamification’s typical goals usually are the improvement of the customers’ management, the reinforcement of brand loyalty, or the rise of employees’ and partners’ productivity in terms of performance.
GAMIFICATION AND SERIOUS GAMES: WHICH ARE THE MAIN DIFFERENCES?
In order to have a complete overview, it is useful to distinguish gamification from serious games. In fact, it often happens that these two terms are used as synonymous, but that’s not true.
Serious games are virtual interactive simulations in the shape of a game which aim to reproduce real situations that are complicated to be replicated, in order to achieve specific pedagogical objectives. In this way, it is possible for users to actively participate within an environment that is quite similar to the one in which they normally live, or to act within a fake decontextualised scenario.
Instead, gamification is the application of videogames’ elements or game design elements in contexts that are not related to games, in order to increase users’ participation and engagement.
The common aspect between gamification and serious games is the intention to propose users something.
GAMIFICATION ADVANTAGES FOR BUSINESS TRAINING
Companies that aim to implement productive processes and employees’ efficiency should take into account the idea of progressively leaving the traditional models in order to use gamification for providing enjoyable and involving programmes with concrete training benefits.
Now, let’s see which are the gamification advantages in the professional field:
THE MAIN FACTORS TO CONSIDER WHEN USING GAMIFICATION
However, to make gamification really work there are several factors to take in consideration. Of course, among these factors there are the coherence of the storytelling within the training game, the usability of the game environment and a smart design to guarantee the best user experience.
Once again, it’s important to consider the whole context, for example starting from a precise strategy, specific and measurable objectives, or being sure in advance that the company philosophy is aligned with a training approach that use games (and vice versa) and, in addition, bearing in mind that by using gamification for business training results, learners will be involved in immersive experiences that are really close with some kind of branded entertainment.
HOW IMPORTANT IS TO RELY ON SECTOR EXPERTS
According to a research conducted by Gartner, on average the 70% of the companies will use gamification for customers’ and employees’ trainings. Moreover, gamification market will have a value of 11 billions of dollars within 2020. It is immediately clear how important is to rely on experts for designing and developing customised games.
This sort of professional can be defined as a hybrid between the game designer and the marketer: as the game designer with whom this professional cooperates, the gamification expert literary establishes the game’s rules, the storytelling and the game actions, but in comparison to the game designer the gamification expert is more competent in marketing, social and behavioural psychology. These kind of expertise are transferred into the game, providing wider purposes to it, not just oriented to the entertainment.
A clear example of sector expertise is represented by VITECO Serious Games, which have a strong experience at national and international level in developing edugames. This company develops educational games with a very intuitive structure and catchy graphics, which are fundamental elements to fully engage the “player”.
Through the edutainment (fusion between educational and entertainment), users are involved in an interactive, multimedia and multi-sensorial experience, which will be able to influence learning processes (role-playing games, ability games, quizzes, runners and puzzles), by improving problem solving skills. In fact, users will be obligated to take decisions, analyse competitions, evaluate situations, develop strategies and take into account specific goals.
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