Mobile Game-Based Learning For Onboarding And Sales Proficiency: A Case Study

Mobile Game-Based Learning For Onboarding And Sales Proficiency: A Case Study
Summary: The popularity of mobile devices is on the rise. Most organizations are now open to the idea of taking advantage of the increase in smartphone/tablet use in the workplace for eLearning delivery. Mobile game-based learning is a powerful amalgam of effective learning and just-in-time delivery.

Mobile Game-Based Learning: A Winsome Combination Of Mobile Platforms And Game-Based Learning

Onboarding programs are an integral part of the training calendar of any organization. These trainings help new employees acquire necessary knowledge, skills, and behaviors to become effective long-term employees. A strong onboarding program can quickly bring new recruits up to speed in the unfamiliar working environment and align them to their immediate deliverable as well as long term goals. While most organizations realize the need for impactful induction trainings, it is now evident that onboarding training solutions have to be more than just revamped presentations or lengthy documents. Enter mobile game-based learning.

The fact that most organizations are now open to the idea of taking advantage of the increased use of smartphones and tablets for eLearning delivery at a workplace enhances availability and accessibility of training for employees, who can now utilize their learning time, even when out of office. But the increasing use of mobile-enabled learning content creates a set of challenges for eLearning developers. In addition to creating mobile-enabled learning content, eLearning developers also have to think about different strategies that will best benefit the mobile medium. Game-based learning on the mobile platform is a powerful amalgam of effective learning and just-in-time delivery.

Case Study: Creating A Mobile Game-Based Learning App

Our client is a rural non-banking finance company, with over 1500 front-line sales executives providing an opportunity to bring alive dreams of entrepreneurs working at the grassroots of the country. Training front-line sales personnel is an ongoing challenge for the client, as a growing number of clients lead to newer recruits coming in on a regular basis. Training them on the details of their work, as well as the vision and mission of the organization, is critical for sales success and they wanted a learning solution that would quickly bring new recruits up to speed and help them retain the knowledge for long.

We created a mobile-enabled online onboarding training program for our client that enables the learner to perform business activities effectively through a game-based approach. The training material is available through a mobile app, installed on the learners’ handheld device.

This was the first of its kind for the sales force of the client. Previously, all new recruits were trained with a 4-day long classroom training session, with little scope for re-enforcements – especially for the first few crucial months. Mobile delivery training made learning content available as per the needs of learner and the game-based approach made learning come alive for employees. Winsome combination of the mobile platform and game-based learning created an avenue for effective learning.

5 Benefits Of Offering Mobile Game-Based Learning To Our Client

1. Time And Money Saving.

With technology-enabled learning, we were able to compress a 4-day long training to 5.5 learning hours. This made considerable time as well as money savings.

2. Game Mechanics Built Into The Training. 

This made mundane topics come alive for learners, and increased the effectiveness of the training manifold.

3. Availability.

Mobile delivery ensured that training was available for the learner as per his/her schedule and changing needs. In addition, making learning content available on their handheld devices, more of the training content is automatically accessed. Furthermore, this also allows greater flexibility and increases learners’ control over their training.

4. Flexibility.

Learners in this case are on the move and rarely get the chance to sit and read. With mobile based training, we provided learners flexibility to complete the course as per respective schedule. The progress is tracked and synced automatically – even if they complete the course in multiple tries.

5. The App Is Linked To The Organization’s Learning Management System.

Managers and administrators have the option of pulling out updated reports and user data as per their requirements. This ensures that the effectiveness of training can be reviewed from time to time and ROI effectively calculated.

How The Mobile Game-Based Learning App Works

The mobile app created a continuous learning platform for all employees of MF- especially new employees, who had to understand various requirements of work along with organizational ethics.  The learner is provided a tab with the app already installed. He/she can login to the app with the existing organizational Learning Management System credentials.

Training is split into 4 levels: The first level shares the organization’s background; the second level dwells on the basics of finance and accounting; the third one lists various products and their features, and the fourth level shares ethics that all employees must follow.

Theme-based game structure: We chose Drona (a famous character from the Mahabharata) as the main mentor along with a panel of experts, who guide learners towards success. The theme is very familiar to learners and they easily align to their roles within the game mechanics.

  • The learner receives a welcome message from Drona, the great teacher. He informs players of the quest that lies ahead of them and what he expects them to achieve at the end of the quest.
  • He also tells about the various mentors from his panel of experts who will meet learners along the way, helping them overcome learning challenges, achieve success, gather points, and finally acquire the crown and the title of Arjuna – the Great.
  • Each player will get a sketchy outline of his Arjuna avatar at the beginning of the game on the leader board page of the gaming app. Throughout the quest, mentors from different modules will set the targets for their module.
  • As the learner achieves each target, Arjuna avatar will gain depth and colors, along with his weapons.

The avatar will have 4 stages for each level of training. When a player completes a level by finishing all the modules within, the Arjuna avatar will acquire certain depth and a color along with additional weapons. At the end of all 4 levels, the learner will be transformed from a novice to an expert in their field and acquire one of the three crowns (silver, gold, and diamond) based on the points gathered, and bag the title “Arjuna – the Great”. They will also receive a certificate, depending on the final score.

The theme-based learning game app provided pertinent information in a way that is best-suited for the intended audiences. Learning content was created as per preferences of learners. The content was then made available using modern, easy-to-use technology, which increases its reach as well as provides continuous access. The sales function of an organization often has the unique distinction that very few employees have a sedentary job. Thus it is always a challenge to congregate them for any kind of training. In the face of this challenge, the mobile game-based learning app was a radical way of reaching out to such a dynamic set of target audience. Not only did it reach out to the audience, it also provided a learning experience which suits the needs of learners as well as aligns itself to their preferences of experiential learning.