Game-based learning for safety training has reduced safety incidents and claim counts by 45%; shrinkage by 55% at Pep Boys, a retail chain.
Does your online safety training seem too boring? Has it become a mere ‘check the box’ activity? Then it’s time to introduce a gamified approach to your safety training. Having seen the example of Pep Boys, you can bring back the spark to your safety training using games. If you are into pharmaceutical research, chemical manufacturing, or nuclear power generation, you will be exposed to severe hazardous processes and need to make safety your prime concern.
In traditional safety training, employees listen to the trainer, go through a series of instructions, and get a list of dos and don’ts – they get bored easily. However, in game-based learning employees take an active part, they are engaged and learn on their own. It can become a fulfilling learning experience for most employees.
Here’s how game-based learning can promote safety in industries that involve hazardous processes.
1. Hazards Hunt
This game is modeled on the lines of a treasure hunt. You can design a game-based course with the background of your operations. You can place the possible hazards in different areas (hidden) and identifying them can become a game for your employees.
If you give it a touch of augmented reality, you will have another Pokémon Go on your hands. You can design a mobile safety game of hazard hunters resembling Pokémon Go. Your employees access the safety training modules on their mobiles, and as they move around the factory site, possible and relevant threats or hazards pop up, based on the location. You can provide assessments such as ‘Select the possible hazards that can occur in this area.’, or ‘How can you avoid the threats that may occur in this division?’
This way, employees can ‘learn while playing’. Not only that, you can assess their learning through the game itself.
(Image Courtesy: R.T. Beers and Company’s Slide Share)
2. Simulation Games
In simulation games, employees can try selecting the necessary Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), oxygen cylinder, fire extinguisher, and other safety equipment needed before entering a hazardous area. They act as a platform to practice how to exit a site when some untoward incident happens. Employees can also be trained to administer first-aid and initial trauma care using simulation games.
Check this video to know how simulation games help train workers on safety.
3. Gaming Elements
Integrating gaming elements such as badges, scores, bonus points, leaderboards, performance charts, etc. can boost employees’ excitement. This can foster healthy competition among the workforce.
For example, when an employee identifies five possible hazards, giving him a badge is a rewarding experience. Adding a certain score after each successful step in the game motivates employees to go further. When you give them a chance to enter their name before starting the game, and communicate using that name, employees feel recognized. Giving bonus points after crossing each level, applauding efforts – all these elements create a congenial learning environment. They engage employees till the end of the gamified course. It offers an immersive learning experience.
To know the role of technology in workplace safety training, check our free webinar: Safety Training – Rapid Development Strategies.
4. Gamified Assessments
In game-based learning, assessments should not be used as assessments. Don’t have the final quiz at the end of the online course. If you do so, your learners may miss all the fun. You need to include evaluation as part of the game.
For example, in a gamified module, your employee needs to enter a hazardous area (say a high radioactivity area). You can pose a question before he enters – what does he need to carry and wear, with multiple choice options. Your employee will not feel he is being tested, as he is in the middle of a game.
5. Provision for Feedback
In game-based learning, employees take the quiz while playing, with little or no prior knowledge, so providing feedback is essential for them to learn. You can specify why his/her answer is correct or incorrect. Offering an explanation will help them understand, reinforce learning, and this will reflect in their work.
It’s now time to put the spark back in your online safety training courses. Make your safety training sizzling and exciting with game-based learning by following the techniques discussed in this post.