5 Ways Gaming and Simulation Can Benefit Your Business
Businesses are using gamification to train and educate employees by capitalizing on their willingness to interact with the material and to be entertained while learning. If you’re new to the field you may be wondering what benefits it could have for your company, here are five ways that gaming and simulation are beneficial to your business:
Using games in the workplace can help spur competition as employees work to acquire new skills faster or try to solve difficult problems more efficiently than their coworkers. While there is some debate over whether or not competition actually helps or hinders learning, people who are naturally competitive will work harder to win – especially if there is a prize or a reward at stake. Even those who don’t normally enjoy competition may enjoy competing within the parameters of a game or simulation and having their results measured objectively as opposed to by their peers or a boss.
When your employees read, watch, or listen to training, they are not actively engaging with the material as they would with a game or simulation. Even during face-to-face training sessions, it is easy to misunderstand something, stay silent, and end up lost as the presenter continues getting into more advanced topics. Without testing the audience’s knowledge, there really is no way to tell whether they are actually learning or just listening passively. Gamification places the responsibility back on the employee, and requires them to engage with the material and actually demonstrate what they understand before moving forward or finishing.
Gaming gives individuals the opportunity to interact with things that they might not encounter or have access to in real life, and to play out a variety of real life scenarios without the same real life consequences. An example would be a game for emergency responders where they must treat patients based on their assessment of the severity of the patient’s wounds as well as their proximity when there is an additional threat like a shooter on the loose. While it would be too dangerous to put individuals that have not been fully trained on the scene of a real emergency, the simulation within a game allows them to play out how they would react without putting others at risk. By imagining themselves in the game, they develop real life problem solving skills and the ability to make quick decisions under pressure.
While the initial startup costs associated with creating a game can be high, the long term cost of using a simulation or game in place of others forms of education or training are most often lower. Games and simulations can have minor changes adapted or new information added without having to scrap the entire project as you would with a manual or printed materials. Furthermore, a digitized game or simulation can be accessed remotely so it is then possible to save on the cost of employee travel or needing to acquire a space to hold training sessions.
Games and simulations have the ability to bring businesses closer to their consumers by getting them to engage just as their employees would, along with the added bonus of gathering information. By collecting data obtained during the game, you can market your service or product more specifically to your consumers. You’ll be able to identify pain points and opportunities for innovation and improvement, and follow trends by studying the results of a well thought out game that is offered to your existing or target market.