You don’t learn to walk by following rules. You learn by doing, and by falling over.
– Richard Branson
An effective and refined onboarding process is vital for the success of an organization. It helps influence employee perception about an organization.
According to the Journal of Managerial Philosophy, the intentions of an employee to remain in or quit an organization depend on how effective the onboarding process has been.
Most companies today follow a similar new hire training orientation program. The employee joins the company and is given a series of videos to watch or a manual of policies and guidelines that the organization is following. While this may seem beneficial, the employee may lose his interest and get bored.
Organizations need to set up a training session that’s more engaging and interactive, as the first few days are very crucial for a new employee. The training program must help them understand the business culture and know how they can fit into the new family seamlessly.
In order to ensure the skilled, productive, and dedicated workforce stays, organizations must think about how they can reshape their onboarding process.
So what can we do to engage employees from the start?
It’s Gamification that lends the WOW factor to your onboarding process.
What does Gamification really mean?
According to Karl M. Kapp, “Gamification is using game-based mechanics, aesthetics, and game thinking to engage people, motivate action, promote learning, and solve problems”.
It influences the behavior of new employees, who love to learn by exploring and doing, i.e., creating competition and camaraderie.
Here are a few ideas on incorporating Gamification elements in an onboarding training program.
Progress and Achieve:
Every organization will have a certain training agenda for new hires, so you as a HR manager should prepare a checklist which will give you an idea of what exactly new hires need to be trained on at each stage of their progress. From the beginning of your session, for any small achievement, you need to reward your employee or give him some points as he progresses further. As you prepare a list of each and every step in your onboarding process, start off with the preliminary stage and start rewarding your employees on their progress. You will have a visual representation of how far your learner has reached by using leaderboards i.e., percentage completion figures with his current position.
For example, there are three levels to complete, and each level has a few obstacles which learners have to clear within the stipulated time to move to the next level. If they successfully complete that particular level within the time, they can unlock the next level and gain the reward points. This is how a new hire gets motivated to move on to complete his tasks – he will progress to achieve.
This is a common phrase encountered while playing video games. The player or in our context, a new hire, has to complete a certain number of tasks or goals to move further i.e., the next level. The new hire is motivated as he reaches and completes those milestones. For example, a sales professional makes at least ten cold calls to potential clients before he or she moves on to the actual sales meetings. Leveling up for new hires is setting up a list of actionable goals to motivate and push them toward being more productive.
Using gaming quests is another way of improving the new employee onboarding process. Quests may involve a single step or as many as you need (several steps). Often, it is more about discovery and learning. For example, a new employee has no idea about the different departments in the organization. So, we will try to create a virtual environment of the complete organization with all departments. The learner has to explore and seek information by visiting each and every department and knowing its details from the department head’s or superiors. That quest of knowing information by discovery radically transforms the learners’ level of engagement, in turn a fun and enjoyable way to learn.
Finally, these are a few ideas on how you can turn your onboarding process into a game and make it more effective and efficient.
Have other interesting ideas? Please share with us in the comments section below.