Gamification for onboarding success

Posted by Call Design on March 16, 2023

For new hires, inhouse or work at home, gamification can help improve readiness and reduce attrition.

Call Design recently made some changes to our onboarding process. Like you, we’ve got a more than full plate of tactical work to do on any given day, so making time for improving infrastructure processes like onboarding is a real challenge. But we felt that having the best possible onboarding process was critical to keep employee experience (EX) at a continued high level. Making new hires feel welcomed, valued, and equipped for success on day one is key to that high level EX. 

Lots of companies are looking for ways to improve onboarding, it’s just that many of them are failing. A recent Gallup study shows that only 12% of surveyed employees “strongly agreed” that their organizations did a great job of onboarding new workers. 

Plus, as many of you do, we’ve got many of work-at-home employees, so we’re very familiar with the challenges of communicating culture and making remote team members feel supported. This experience drives us to search for the very best solutions to help our contact center and back office customers find new ways to solve new problems with onboarding, for inhouse as well as work-at-home agents. 

While there are different methods available to train new workers and prepare them for the job, one effective solution we offer for promoting fast employee growth and success is the gamification of the training process. Here’s how it can help onboarding in a contact center.

How Does Gamification Work 

Gamification is a motivational tool that uses game mechanics like leaderboards, challenges, dashboards, points, rewards, and recognition. It has been gaining traction across many industries with proven results at providing a fun and effective way of training new workers. While traditional training methods may involve one-on-one’s with busy team leads, or passively watching study modules, gamification can add to these methods by providing interactive gaming elements to motivate agents and boost training efficiency and engagement. 

Gamification can significantly enhance the training experience while giving supervisors and training managers more opportunities to provide meaningful feedback and analyze the strengths and weaknesses of their trainees. An Aberdeen study cited by ERG shows that a gamified onboarding process boosted engagement by 48% for new hires and decreased attrition by 36%. 

Gamifying the Onboarding Process

There are different ways to watch an introductory video or a module on HR standards—it can play in the background while an employee multitasks, or the new hire can actively listen, knowing they will be tested and rewarded based on the score. With a colorful scoreboard that’s accessible anytime, there’s no mystery to the new hire’s progress. When it comes to developing new training modules and processes, there are different ways to gamify the process. Some ideas include implementing leaderboards and experience points as workers progress through their training. It not only allows trainees to have a firmer grasp of their training development, but it also provides a means to measure their progress while adding a competitive element to their training. Healthy competition, when carefully managed, can boost engagement and promote new staff to quickly hone their abilities and learn new skills to keep up with their peers and stay ahead of the game. 

In addition to leaderboards and experience points, other means of boosting trainee development and motivation are adding achievements and shareable badges. We’ve all seen social media posts in which our contacts share their accomplishments by posting earned badges. For some, the thumbs-ups we get from our network are a more powerful motivator than a gift card. These game mechanics provide a measurable means for trainees and trainers to analyze personal development and growth while giving staff goals to work towards actively. 

By having benchmarks and achievements to strive for and actively seek, employees will be more motivated to actively engage with modules on company culture, new hire instructional videos, or tutorials on the tools the employee will use. The key is to find ways that workers and trainees can measure their progress and have goals to work towards actively. 

Benefits of Gamification for New Hires

  1. Getting to know you

Gamification is a proven way to improve objective performance, but even more importantly for new hires, it is an active path to becoming part of the team. It gives new employees a way to introduce themselves to their new teammates by encouraging social interaction. Trainees can appear on leaderboards, post their achievement badges, and receive likes and positive comments from established employees. 

  1. Team Building

Not only does competition between trainees and staff promote the development of the skills necessary to succeed, but it also encourages new teammates to work together towards shared goals. Some goals are for individuals, other goals can be set on a team level, and teams can compete against each other. For some trainees, individual competition with another individual agent may not be a strong motivator. But these same employees may feel highly motivated to help their teammates reach a collective goal. 

  1. Good First Impression

You never get a second chance to make a first impression. We want our new hires to get started on the right foot, with the right mindset, and at the right pace for learning. You believe that great Employee Experience is important, and you want your new hires to believe that you believe it. They must feel in their hearts that your commitment to your employees is as real as your commitment to your customers. That way, your new hires will immediately align with that commitment.

  1. Training

From the jump, it’s absolutely vital that our employees have the training they need to deliver the extraordinary experiences that our customers expect. Gamification encourages new hires’ development throughout the training process and helps to lock in the knowledge they need to master a challenging job. Having a tool that actively pushes employees to grow and learn will ultimately lead to better-equipped staff that not only make customers happy, but also stay with the company longer.

  1. Feedback

While providing goals and achievements that employees can seek is the first step towards encouraging development and growth, providing better and more meaningful feedback is also crucial for success. New hires can be anxious about hitting the floor to take real customer interactions—having measured feedback can help them confidently feel ready. 

Progress bars and milestones give trainees a measure of their progress and provide supervisors with data they can use. Depending on the growth rate or the achievements that staff attain, team leads can look at their progress bars to provide accurate feedback and encouragement to help teams develop even further. 

The Future of Onboarding

A robust onboarding and training regimen that promotes employee growth and development is a crucial foundation for every contact center, and with gamification you can take your onboarding process to the next level. If you are interested in learning more about gamification and how it can supercharge your workspace, Call Design is here to help. Contact us today to get started!

Shawn McCormick