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How Deloitte gamed their way to training excellence

Gamification Article Series – II

Whether you are spearheading a well-established organization or a brand new startup, one thing you cannot afford to ignore is providing your workforce with the best possible training you can. After all, it’s the scaffold that will help your business grow and remain competitive. But, a steady rise in remote work and a decentralized workforce has led to new challenges in training and development. With the employees getting geographically dispersed, training can be quite hard: misunderstandings are common, and cultural differences may even lead to inconsistent training.

Deloitte Leadership Academy Leads with Gamification

Gamification takes the essence of games — attributes such as Competition, collaboration, challenge and feedback — and applies these to a range of real-world processes inside an organization, including learning & development. By integrating gamification principles into the online learning, Deloitte has seen use of its Deloitte Leadership Academy (DLA) training program increase. DLA is an online learning platform for training its own employees as well as its clients. DLA realized that by integrating points, badges, and leaderboards into a user-friendly platform combined with video lectures, in-depth courses, tests and quizzes, experience becomes really engaging for the user and they more likely to complete the online training programs.

Using badges to engage learners

After completing each mission which consists of watching videos and attempting quizzes, learners receive a badge to mark their achievement based on the difficulty and challenge of the mission completed. Majority of those badges are obtained upon completion of highly valued competencies, but there are some ‘secret’ badges, nicknamed “Snowflake” badges. These are fashioned to surprise and amuse the learners and are cracked only by accomplishing certain goals. For instance, if all employees of one department watch the same video during the same week, they all collect a snowflake badge.

Learderboards for enhancing learner engagement

DLA has designed its leader board in a very instructive manner. Instead of revealing one overall list of the top ten scorers, each common “level” of user has its own customize leader board of top ten scorers, so that each user’s competition for top-ten is restricted to other users on that same level. That board rearranges every week. Usually, conventional leaderboards are counter-productive. A few consistent top users, with huge scores, demotivate everybody who knows they have no chance of defeating them. But in Deloitte’s model, all the users get a new chance to be the best learner on the site on a weekly basis. This weekly update of leaderboards also means that employees won’t be demotivated from using the site just because they missed a few weeks — and fell short in scores — while on vacation or traveling for work.

Reaping rich rewards

Ever since the gamification techniques were integrated in to Deloitte Leadership Academy, there has been a 38 percent increase in the number of users returning to the site each week. The Academy has had over 20,000 executive users since its initiation in 2008. It has been found that users are spending increasing amounts of time on the program while the numbers of programs finished have also enhanced.

Author Info:

Dr. Manu Melwin Joy (Assistant professor at School of Management Studies, CUSAT. Authored seven books in the area of Organizational Behaviour, Human
Resource Management, and Gamification).

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