How Gamification Will Impact Corporate Learning

At EI Design, we have been crafting gamification for serious learning (corporate learning) for over two years now. We now see a maturing in  corporates’ understanding of its true potential and how a well-crafted gamification solution can create the right learning impact. Today, gamification is poised to impact corporate learning. It is more than a buzz and is steadily gaining momentum on account of increase in adoption of mobile learning or mLearning and significant numbers of millennial learners in the overall learner demographics that are asking for it.

Ways In Which Gamification Impacts Corporate Learning

In this article, I will share insights on how gamification is poised to impact corporate learning through the 4 key drivers that are pushing it (hence, why you should evaluate it/adopt it).


Before getting into the specifics of how gamification will impact corporate learning, let’s quickly look at the basics. I begin by using 3 questions from my article on Gamification For Serious Learning – 5 Facts That Will Impress Your Boss to set the context. Then we will look at the crucial fourth question on how exactly gamification will impact corporate learning.

Q1. What Is Gamification?

Gamification is an alternate approach to traditional eLearning to provide engaging, immersive, and effective learning experience to your learners. By using gaming principles, elements, and innovative strategies, learners can be engaged and encouraged to apply this learning at work.

It provides an effective informal learning environment and helps learners practice real-life situations and challenges in a safe environment. Typical components of gamification-based learning courses are shown here.

EI design Gamification

Q2. What Are The Advantages Of Using Gamification Vis-A-Vis Traditional eLearning?

Unlike traditional eLearning, gamification:

    1. Evokes friendly competition.
    2. Brings in a spirit of achievement.
    3. Enhances user engagement and can be used as a behavior change tool.
    4. Encourages learners to progress through the content, motivates action, influences behavior and drives innovation.

You can refer to my article Benefits Of Gamification In eLearning for more details.

Q3. How Does Gamification Impact Learning?

There are several aspects of learning notably its retention, and eventual application on the job that can be influenced by gamification.


    1. Gamification puts scientific principles of repeated retrieval and spaced repetition to good effect and brings about a remarkable change in behavior.
    2. Games can be “fun” for the learner but still have a significant impact on learning. (The player can experience “fun” during the game and still experience “learning” during gameplay if the level of engagement is high.)
    3. Playing games with high levels of engagement leads to an increase in retention.

Q4. How Will Gamification Impact Corporate Learning?

I am listing what I believe are the 4 key drivers that indicate how gamification will impact corporate learning.

    1. The gain for the learners (the learner perspective).
      The last 4-5 years have seen dramatic changes in the way learning is delivered. Extensive adoption of mobile learning or mLearning allows learning to be delivered on devices of learners’ choice (including tablets and smartphones). The way learning solutions are being crafted is also undergoing a significant change. The focus is now on crafting more engaging and immersive learning solutions that appeal to the changing learner demographics, which now has a significant percentage of Millennials. Increasingly, modern day solutions use micro learning and feature extensive usage of videos and social learning. Both these factors provide a clear room to provide gamification-based learning that can be deployed on mobile devices in formats that appeals to the learners. It can be crafted in a style that resonates well with the learners leading to higher retention and application.
    2. The gain for business (the business perspective).
      While gamification-based learning has always appealed to the learner community, corporates have often been hesitant to embrace this on a wider scale. Not anymore! There are several case studies that establish gamification (for serious learning) creates:

        • High impact training.
        • Effective application on the job.
    3. Maturing of tools and technologies to support gamification-based solutions.
      This is a very significant driver and today it is much easier to craft effective gamification solutions on account of:

        • Maturing of mLearning or mobile learning authoring tools (particularly responsive).
        • Availability of varied gamification platforms to choose from.
        • Learning Management System support for gamification.
    4. Capability to create high impact learning solutions.
      With gamification, the learner engagement quotient is significantly high. It allows organizations to challenge the learners, get them to give their very best as there are rewards for the taking, bring in a sense of variety, and use the community factor and healthy competition among learner groups to good effect. Higher motivation levels and a responsive learning environment will help learners make their own contributions to the organization’s knowledge base. A well-crafted gamification solution designed with the learner preferences in mind will certainly result in higher learner engagement and knowledge retention. This in turn leads to enhanced performance, better application of learning, and fulfillment of the expectations that an organization has with its workforce and the learning initiative.

Specifically, gamification can:

    • Support all training needs (ranging from Induction, onboarding, behavioral change, soft skills and compliance).
    • Enrich traditional eLearning-based training (through partial gamification).
    • Leverage on learning paths (with wide and varied range of learning assets).
    • Leverage on collaboration (social learning).

I hope this article was useful in understanding how gamification will impact corporate learning and trigger an evaluation or adoption of gamification for your learning needs. Do reach out to me if you have any queries. You can also refer to my earlier articles:


Examples Of Mobile Learning To Boost Employee Engagement And Performance

How To Use Mobile Learning To Boost Employee Engagement And Performance

Mobile learning is acknowledged as a key training delivery format by organizations across the world. It is used extensively as a modern training approach that is learner centric and facilitates an ongoing consumption of smaller bytes of learning instead of one large chunk.

Let us see how mobile learning can be used to drive higher employee engagement and performance.

  • Learn, Recall, and Retain.
    As the learning bytes are delivered in interesting and engaging formats and made available to learners within their workflow, they work more effectively in helping them learn, recall, and retain.
  • Apply the learning on the job.
    Over a period of time, this leads to the required application at work (and the anticipated behavioral change). All these factors are driving the usage of mobile learning to engage learners and boost their performance.

What Is Mobile Learning And Why Is It Gaining Momentum?

Mobile learning is the next-gen eLearning that can be offered across multiple devices (desktops, laptops, tablets, smartphones, and so on). It is an “anytime, anywhere” learning that they can assimilate at their own pace and on devices of their choice.

Mobile learning can be used to offer formal training as well as Performance Support or PSTs (just-in-time learning aids that are part of the learners’ workflow and are readily available to them precisely at the moment of their need). It can also be used to supplement traditional Instructor Led Training (ILT).

This is not all. The adoption of mobile learning across organizations is increasing on the account of:

  • Changing learner profiles.
    Worldwide, the Millennials are a significant part of the workforce. They need access to training that works on the device of their choice (read smartphone).
  • How learners want to learn.
    Learners today do not have the time to log in to a Learning Management System and browse through to identify what they need. With a lot of pressure on time, they want precise bytes of learning that they can use to solve a problem or practice. It goes without saying; this needs to be available in their workflow (read smartphone again).
  • Changing learning device preferences.
    Learners want this control to be with them. Depending on the nature of training, whether formal or informal, lengthy or micro nuggets, they want to exercise the right to choose the device they should learn on.
  • Maturing of tools and technology.
    Today, mobile learning solutions can opt from a wide ranging array of authoring tools and LMS platforms and offer both adaptive (desktops, laptops, and tablets) and responsive designs (desktops, laptops, tablets, and smartphones).

Why Does It Make Sense To Adopt Mobile Learning To Increase Employee Engagement And Eventually Impact Their Performance?

The success of a training program hinges on several factors as shown here. These aspects influence learners’ engagement and the eventual performance gain.

  1. Learners’ reaction.
    It begins with the crucial first connect with learners (their reaction to the online course). This has a direct bearing on how the learners respond and on the desired completion rates. Mobile learning scores a high 5 here.
  2. Effectiveness of learning or stickiness of learning.
    Usage of immersive learning strategies increases the stickiness of learning. Similarly, usage of strategies that truly engage the learner, facilitate recall, and push them to think and apply is vital to succeed in this endeavor. Mobile learning offers a great value here as it supports rich media formats and trending learning strategies like microlearning, gamification, story-based learning, complex decision making using scenario-based learning, and so on.
  3. Application of learning (leading to the desired behavioral change and a positive impact on business).
    As I mentioned earlier, learners will not go through an LMS to seek an answer to address a problem on the job. Instead, they need this byte to be available to them when they need it. Similarly, when they need to practice a new concept or a new skill, they want the flexibility to learn on the device they access the most. Usage of mobile learning in a microlearning format that can be used for both formal training or as Performance Support is very useful in meeting this mandate.

From these insights, you will note that you can positively impact each of these facets by adopting mobile learning. With this approach, you will see a more engaged learner.

Is Mobile Learning Or mLearning For Millennials Alone?

It is a misconception that mobile learning appeals only to the millennial workforce.

Irrespective of age, all of us spend so much of time on our smartphones and tablets that it makes tremendous sense to extend the learning on these devices.

The flexibility to use the device to learn on, the ease of learning on the go, and the usage of rich media and high impact strategies attract learners of all profiles to mobile learning adoption.

As a result, you will see higher completion rates across various learner profiles and not limited to Millennials.


  • When mobile learning is used for Performance Support (just-in-time learning aids that are available to the learners within their workflow and precisely at the moment of their need), you can see increased application of learning on the job. As I have already highlighted, this is a crucial aspect in getting the desired impact that the business seeks.
  • Eventually, the combination of completion of training on time, higher retention and successful application has a positive impact on the ROI.

What Learning Strategies Adapt Well To Mobile Learning Or mLearning?

While most traditional eLearning strategies can be well adapted for mobile learning or mLearning, you can see added gains as you use the following approaches:

  1. Microlearning.
  2. Gamification.
  3. Story or scenario-based learning (the impact is even higher when we use videos and interactive videos).
  4. Mobile apps for learning.
  5. Millennial-centric designs.
  6. Social learning.

New trends that can further increase the learner engagement include: 

  1. Learning path-based approach to encourage “learning as a continuum”.
  2. Personalization to make the learning experience more meaningful to the learner.
  3. Content Curation to support formal training as well as to ensure that learners contribute to enrich the knowledge base.

Given the wide ranging corporate training needs, can mobile learning or mLearning be used to offer all of them?


A report drafted by SailPoint in 2013 suggests that by the year 2018, approximately 70% of the mobile workforce worldwide will manage their business-related tasks on their preferred mobile devices.

If we look at the typical range of corporate training needs, the list is likely to look like this and each of these can be offered through mobile learning or mLearning:

  1. Induction and onboarding (now this often includes pre-onboarding).
  2. Compliance training.
  3. Product training.
  4. Sales training.
  5. Leadership training.
  6. Application tools’ training.
  7. Soft skills training.
  8. Specific professional skills training.
  9. HR/HCM initiatives.
  10. Significant corporate initiatives: Ranging from Quality and Innovation to supporting Change Management initiatives.

10 Killer Examples

At EI Design, our mobile learning practice began in 2011. Over the last six years, we have created over 1000 hours of mobile learning solutions for both formal training as well as Performance Support, including all the trainings highlighted above.

While the initial adoption of mobile learning was limited to access till tablets (adaptive designs), over the last two years, most of our solutions support smartphones (responsive designs).

I have shortlisted the following 10 examples to show the impact of mobile learning that would map to your varied corporate training needs. These examples reflect the usage of mobile learning for formal training as well as Performance Support.

I showcase strategies including:

  1. Microlearning.
  2. Gamification.
  3. Scenario-based learning.
  4. Learning paths.
  5. Social learning.
  6. Personalization.

I showcase high impact delivery formats including:

  1. Apps for learning.
  2. Videos.
  3. Interactive videos.
  4. Our award winning Interactive Parallax design nugget.

Click here to view and download the interactive PDF containing the 10 examples.

I hope this article provides the required pointers that enable you to adopt mobile learning (if you are new to this) or scale its usage. The supporting 10 examples show you how you can achieve your mandate. If you have any other queries, do contact me.

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5 Reasons Why You Should Adopt Blended Training

In this article, I highlight five compelling reasons why you should evaluate a blended training approach that combines classroom and online training. I also share two examples to show how you can use it to create a high-impact blended training.

What Ιs Τhe Βlended Τraining Αpproach?

As the name suggests, the term blended training, or else hybrid training, combines different learning techniques. It offers a combination that brings in the best of both forms of training, namely:

  1. Instructor-Led Training (ILT)
  2. Online training, eLearning or mLearning

As it offers a blend of both formats facilitated as well as self-paced, it maps more effectively to suit the learning expectations of a wider audience.

While the pressure on training budgets may often trigger conversion of ILT programs into eLearning or online training programs; it is equally important to assess if a middle of the road. That is, a blended delivery offering a combination of classroom and online training, may be the right answer.

What Is Triggering The Adoption Of Blended Training Approach Over Instructor-Led Training, Or ILT?

The push from learners is probably the biggest factor for that. This is driving the momentum to convert Instructor-Led Training, or ILTs, into blended training. If not fully online or eLearning programs.

Certainly, pressure on budgets and a need to reach a wider audience in lesser time are two other factors. Actually, these two are significant drivers from the organizational perspective.

What Are The Benefits Learners And Organizations Gain If They Adopt A Blended Training Approach Over A Traditional ILT?

Benefits For The Learners

  1. The blended training approach is learner-centric and provides better control to the learner in adjusting the pace at which they want to learn.
  2. It also gives them the flexibility to pick up the online resources in case they missed the ILT session or to refresh their knowledge post the workshop.
  3. The supplementary online training provides them a self-paced learning track. Also the online resources are available 24×7 now.
  4. The blended training offers a significantly better collaboration, including online discussions, messaging, feedback, and a platform to communicate with peers as well as instructors.
  5. Research confirms that retention levels of online training are higher than face-to-face facilitated sessions. Therefore, blended training approaches lead to higher levels of retention for learners.

Benefits For The Organizations

  1. From the organizational perspective, Virtual Instructor-Led Training, or VILT enables organizations to reach a wider audience in a significantly shorter time. This comes in complete contrast to the traditional Instructor-Led Training, or ILT approach.
  2. As you convert the ILT program to a blended training mode, the seat time also becomes shorter. For instance, a 5-day face-to-face workshop may now need a maximum of couple of days of workshop. Moreover, you can balance the learning using online resources.
  3. Additionally, the online framework enables the instructors to assess the learners’ performance online and far more quickly.
  4. More significantly, with a blended training approach, organizations can tap into the prevailing online strategies, like Microlearning or Gamification. They can also adopt collaborative social learning to create supplementary online trainings. Usage of these approaches provides an immersive learning experience aimed at better recall, retention and application.
  5. The supplementary online courses or resources facilitate a continued learning post the workshop.

How Do Learners Respond To Blended Training Approach?

Each learner has a different learning style and they relate differently to a given training format.

  • Blended training offers a broader set of options to the learners and can match a more varied set of learning styles.
  • Added to this, there is the flexibility that blended training provides. Even if they miss the facilitated session, they have access to the same resources online now.
  • Today, you can design online courses or supplementary resources to support multi-devices including tablets and smartphones besides desktops and laptops.
  • Particularly, online supplementary resources can be designed using a wide range of innovative formats, like Interactive PDFs, eBooks/Flipbooks, Interactive videos, and so on.
  • These can be accessed by learners on the device of their choice, when they need and as often as they require. All of these help the learners retain the information and re-use it when the need arises again.

How Can Blended Training Be Delivered?

Blended training solutions can be rendered in multiple ways based on the nature of training. Broadly, this maps to:

1. Virtual Instructor-Led Training, Or VILT

Here, the training is facilitated by an instructor, just like in ILT, but a virtual platform is used to connect learners who can be geographically spread out. The session integrates many online aspects like polling questions, online questions, and breakout rooms to conduct group activities. These sessions can be recorded and made available to participants as an online learning aid. The instructor can provide pre-workshop material in an online format that is accessible to the learners. Online delivery also enables the instructors to obtain feedback quickly. Since the assessments are online, the results can be shared quickly and more significantly, this data can be used to track the learners’ performance and determine the training impact.

NOTE: In this case, the primary training is facilitated or instructor-led, and eLearning or online training supplements it.

2. Blended Approach Where ILT/VILT Complements The Online Or eLearning Delivery

Certain training needs cannot be mapped readily to a pure ILT or pure eLearning formats. In fact, they need both components. A good example is an induction and onboarding program where significant parts of the training can be offered in a self-paced, eLearning format. However, to successfully induct and onboard an employee, several components of this program need face-to-face sessions. In fact, some sessions will greatly benefit with group activities.

NOTE: In this case, ILT and eLearning-based training complement each other.

Examples: How Can You Enhance The impact Of ILT By Adopting A Blended Training Approach?

Let me share two examples that will help you see the value that a blended training approach will bring.

Example 1: Features our platform eSpace, a unique online framework for offering ILT and blended learning that enables you to go beyond the traditional ILTand blended delivery to a new-age digital experience.

eSpace retains the edge of the ILT delivery and offers the benefits and flexibility of online delivery. This unique framework allows you to offer ILT or blended training through an online platform. It is a cloud-based system and works on all devices including tablets and smartphones.

You can create learning paths featuring Microlearning nuggets for blended delivery. You may also integrate Social Learning features to provide higher-impact learning.

eSpace gives you the opportunity to:

  • Provide Access At A Single Source For ILT Material: Learners can share pre-workshop online material before the training session. They have an ongoing access to it, both during and post workshop.
  • Give Instructors Control: They can define the learning path and integrate all the job aids required for training acquisition and eventually its application on the job, thereby establishing a performance gain that businesses want to see.
  • Communicate And Collaborate: There are several features to facilitate communication with groups and individuals.
  • Engage And Contribute: The tool offers different features to take feedback from participants during the training.

Take a look at this video to see the features of our eSpace platform and how it can be used to enhance the effectiveness of Instructor-Led Training and blended learning deliveries.


Example 2: For our own Induction and Onboarding program, we use a blended training approach.

Induction Portal - Learning Path

Induction Portal - ILT Session documents

Part 1 – Online Learning Path: The essential elements of induction are available to the learner through the online portal, which supports multi-devices including smartphones and tablets. The learner goes through a multi-stage learning journey. The journey features various learning resources in microlearning format.

Part 2 – ILT Supplement: At each stage of the learning journey, we do an online assessment of the learner’s progress. We also provide additional face-to-face, facilitated ILT sessions. The focus of the facilitated sessions is to push knowledge acquisition to application. We must then also ensure that the new inductee can begin contributing quickly and effectively.

The online portal features innovative approaches, including:

I hope this article gives you a balanced perspective as you evaluate the transition of your ILT programs into online training modes.

I firmly believe that a middle-of-the-road approach is often a more sensible choice if you are in early stages of eLearning adoption. It is also a better choice where learning gains are directly linked to a human intervention. If you have any further queries, please contact me at

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Performance Support Tools – Tips And Strategies To Boost Employee Performance

Formal training are often not enough to obtain the required gains in workforce performance. This article provides tips and strategies on how you can use Performance Support Tools to supplement formal training and boost employee performance.

How To Boost Employee Performance With Performance Support Tools

How do we learn?

  • 70% from on the job experiences (experiential learning).
  • 20% from interactions with others (social learning).
  • 10% from formal (structured learning).

While the exact ratio of how we learn may be debatable, what is evident is that Learning and Development teams need to go beyond the focus on 10% of formal training and must align their learning strategies to encompass the need for informal learning.

Performance Support Tools (that supplement formal training) fit in precisely to address this need. You can integrate them into your learning strategy and see the “performance changing” gains accrue.

What Are Performance Support Tools (PSTs)?

Performance Support Tools or PSTs are just-in-time learning aids designed to assist employees with on-the-job support and enhance workforce performance.

  • They provide support and guidance to employees at work exactly when they need them.
  • They are easily accessible and are usually available in the learners’ workflow, serving the purpose of providing the required task support to employees, thereby leading to enhanced employee performance.
  • PSTs are ideal to bring about continuous improvement in the workforce performance that organizations look to achieve.

Why Does It Make Business Sense To Adopt Performance Support Tools In Your Learning Strategy?

The origins of Performance Support can be traced to nearly three decades ago. In the words of Gloria Gery, a key proponent of Performance Support, “Performance Support focuses on work itself while training focuses on the learning required to do the work. Integrating resources in the workplace is inevitable, and the need is urgent. Filtering resources so people get the tools and resources they need while actively working is the goal. Work process and roles are the primary filters. The mechanisms vary: Portals, performance-centered workflow interfaces, enterprise applications, integration projects, etc, but what’s important is that performer be able to name that tune in one note, to perform in exemplary fashion“.

I think Gloria Gery was ahead of her time but what she predicted on usage of Performance Support is finally gaining momentum today. While the core of what Gloria stipulated is valid today, success can be achieved only when Performance Support integrates cohesively with your current learning strategy. Only then can the training result in enhanced employee performance and impact businesses resulting in a positive ROI on training.

I believe that organizations today are ready to make this change and several supporting factors (mLearning or mobile learningmicrolearning, and social learning) will help build momentum in the adoption of Performance Support Tools.

What Is The Difference Between Performance Support And Formal Training?

It is important to note that Performance Support is not training nor does it replace formal training. It co-exists with formal training and actually uplifts the impact of formal training by pushing the envelope from knowledge acquisition to application.

As we know, the gap between knowledge acquisition (through formal training) and knowledge application (applying the acquired knowledge meaningfully on the job to create the required impact) is a huge one. Learning and Development professionals constantly struggle with and find a challenge in demonstrating the impact of training to business. When used in conjunction with formal training, Performance Support Tools achieve this mandate by helping learners apply their learning on the job.

How Can Performance Support Be Integrated Into Your Overall Learning Strategy?

The answer lies in having an approach of Learning and Performance Ecosystem as shown here that integrates components of all three aspects of how we learn.

Learning and Performance Ecosystem - EI Design

How Do Performance Support Tools Help Learners And Boost Employee Performance?

Learners like learning at work and learning informally. Performance Support Tools (PSTs) allow learners to learn and work at the same time.

Performance Support Tools (PSTs) are extremely beneficial in terms of enhancing employee performance as they:

  • Enable learners to perform tasks on their own without depending on external assistance.
  • Save time that would otherwise have been wasted in the form of senior employees providing guidance to lesser experienced employees.
  • Enable new employees to perform tasks quickly with the required quality, irrespective of a formal training being available or not.
  • Help new employees understand complex tasks in a simple way.
  • Help learners learn about new systems, upgrades, or a new introduction in the workflow/process.

How Can Organizations Use Performance Support Tools To Boost Workforce Performance?

PSTs accelerate learning as they are part of the learners’ workflow and are available precisely at the time of their need. By design, they are easy to assimilate and easy to apply.


  1. They are a great fit for informal learning.
  2. They can be also be used to support formal training to improve the stickiness of learning and its eventual application on the job.
  3. You can integrate microlearning based strategies to create them and see the application levels zoom.
  4. Couple them with platforms for social learning and you will see the impact of your training multiply.

What Are The Possible Formats To Offer Performance Support Tools?

You can offer Performance Support Solutions to improve employee performance in a variety of ways.

At EI Design, we offer Performance Support Tools to increase workforce performance in various formats, including:

1. Mobile Apps.

The very fact that these apps are “mobile” helps learners obtain just-in-time information and Performance Support anytime, anywhere.

2. Videos And Interactive Videos.

Videos have proved to be one of the most sought after Performance Support Tools and the fact that “How-to” searches shoot up 70% every year on YouTube justifies it.

3. Decision-Making Scenarios.

More often than not, learners will be in need of just-in-time support when they are stuck in a complex situation at work. You can offer Performance Support in the form of decision-making scenarios to help them and achieve higher retention of learning and application of that learning on the job.

4. Whiteboard Animations.

Animations and illustrations are one of those things that catch your eye instantly. When packaged as a Performance Support Tool, they can help not just capture learners’ attention but retain it and help them internalize the learning effectively.

5. Kinetic Text/Animations.

Like Ronan Keating and the rest of the Boyzone members, “words” is all you need to have to take your learners’ breath away if you can present them as kinetic text animations. They’re extremely handy when you want to convey concepts that are difficult to visualize.

6. Interactive PDFs.

Save the learners the travails of going through lengthy documents. You can offer them Performance Support in the form of Interactive PDFs with a touch of user-friendly navigation and appealing visuals. They make great PSTs when used to present tips, checklists, fact sheets, and so on.

7. eBooks.

These can prove to be useful Performance Support Tools (PSTs), especially if you’re looking to convert your documents into multi-device and HTML5 compatible resources. They provide the added benefit of converting lengthy documents into manageable chunks. You can also integrate audio and video to increase the impact.

8. Expert Videos, Webinars/Recorded Webinar.

Expert insights are always treated by with respect by learners. Expert videos, webinars, and recorded webinars have plenty of takers in the learner community and they can serve as a useful Performance Support Tool.

9. Webcast/Podcasts.

The ease and flexibility of accessing them on-the-go makes webcasts/podcasts ideal for Performance Support. They come with the added advantage of being brief and entertaining, much to the liking of the present day learners.

What More Is Possible To Engage Your Employees And Boost Employee Performance?

To enhance employee performance and encourage on-the-job learning, Performance Support Tools (PSTs) can be used in conjunction with other learning strategies, such as:

  1. mLearning or Mobile learning (by offering PSTs in mobile-friendly formats).
  2. Designing learning for the millenial generation (innovative formats of PSTs can be aligned to the way millennials learn).
  3. Gamification.
  4. Learning portals.

You can also watch this video to know about the different formats that can be used to offer Performance Support.

What Gains Will Organizations Accrue If They Adopt Performance Support Tools?

Today, with wider adoption of mLearning or mobile learning, organizations have an enormous range of options to provide Performance Support solutions to their employees and boost workforce performance.

Adding Performance Support to your formal training will not only enhance the impact of the formal training but more significantly enable learners to apply the learning on the job. Having access to these learning aids precisely at the time of learner need encourages the learners to use them effectively. The final outcome is “performance changing” learning that Learning and Development teams seek.

Additionally, technology allows us to offer Performance Support within learners’ workflow (for instance, on their smartphones) and in varied engaging formats that appeal to different learner profiles and create sticky learning.

I hope this article establishes how you can use PSTs to supplement your training. Do contact me if you need any specific support.

Also Read:


Top 6 Benefits Of Gamification In eLearning

Gamification in eLearning helps create an effective learning system that enables learners to rehearse real-life scenarios and challenges in a safe environment. In this article, I will walk you through some of the benefits of Gamification for learners and how the experience of learning (recall and retention) can be enhanced through Gamification.

How Gamification In eLearning Enhances Learning

What is Gamification?

According to Wikipedia, “Gamification techniques strive to leverage people’s natural desires for socializing, learning, mastery, competition, achievement, status, self-expression, altruism, or closure.

Gamification is about more than just playing games (in fact, sometimes it does not involve playing games at all). It can be defined as the concept of applying game-design thinking to non-game applications.

In the context of Gamification for serious learning, a game based concept is applied to content to meet the specific learning outcomes.

Does Gamification in eLearning truly help learners learn?

Several organizations do not consider Gamification in eLearning as a viable approach on account of higher cost, longer turn-around time to develop, and so on. Many shy away from using it in their formal eLearning programs, believing that while it is fun for the learners, it does not necessarily lead to a learning outcome.

However, there are some interesting statistics that clearly establish it cannot be ignored:

By 21 years of age, many males will have spent over 10,000 hours immersed in online gaming.
Source: McGonigal, Reality is Broken

Gartner’s research estimated that more than 70% of Global 2000 companies would offer at least one gamified application by the end of 2014, although not all effectively.

Source: Gartner, 2011 industry research


How does Gamification enhance learning?

Successful learning is a combination of three elements:

  • 70% from real-life and on-the-job experiences, tasks, and problem solving
  • 20% from feedback and from observing and working with peers and role models
  • 10% from formal training

Take a look at this diagram on the techniques used in learning design approaches and their relationship to retention of learning:


As we note from this, gamification can provide an effective approach to enhancing learning. This is on account of these inherent features:

  • It evokes friendly competition.
  • It provides the learners with a sense of achievement.
  • It provides an engaging learner experience leading to anticipated behavior change.
  • It encourages learners to progress through the content, motivate action, and eventually influence behavior.

6 Benefits of Gamification in eLearning

  1. Better learning experience. 
    The learner can experience “fun” during the game and still learn if the level of engagement is high. A good gamification strategy with high levels of engagement will lead to an increase in recall and retention.
  2. Better learning environment.
    Gamification in eLearning provides an effective, informal learning environment, and helps learners practice real-life situations and challenges in a safe environment. This leads to a more engaged learning experience that facilitates better knowledge retention.
  3. Instant feedback.
    It provides instant feedback so that learners know what they know or what they should know. This too facilitates better learner engagement and thereby better recall and retention.
  4. Prompting behavioral change.
    Points, badges, and leaderboards would surely make training awesome. However, gamification is about a lot more than just those surface level benefits. Gamification can drive strong behavioral change especially when combined with the scientific principles of repeated retrieval and spaced repetition.
  5. Can be applied for most learning needs.
    Gamification can be used to fulfill most learning needs including induction and onboarding, product sales, customer support, soft skills, awareness creation, and compliance.
  6. Impact on bottom-line.
    On account of all these aspects that touch and impact learners (better learning experience, higher recall and retention, catalyzing behavioral change, and so on), it can create a significant performance gain for the organization.

Success factors

While Gamification in eLearning provides several benefits, as outlined here, much depends on the concept that is used to drive the learning. The mantra to succeed in using gamification in eLearning is to create a concept that:

  • Captures (and retains) learners’ attention
  • Challenges them
  • Engages and entertains them, and
  • Teaches them

I hope this article has given you an insight on why you should evaluate Gamification for eLearning and how it will benefit both learners and your business.

You could also look at my previous articles to learn how can you practically use Gamification for learning:


10 Reasons Why You Should Use Mobile Apps For Learning In Your Learning Strategy

Mobile apps are increasingly being seen as the future of learning. Popularity of mobile devices and widespread adoption of mLearning or mobile learning is providing them the required push. In this article, I outline 10 reasons why your learning strategy must include mobile apps for learning.

Why You Need To Use Mobile Apps For Learning In Your Learning Strategy

Before deep-diving into the reasons why you should integrate mobile learning trends such as mobile apps for learning in your learning strategy, let’s take a quick look at 3 important, basic aspects (What, Why, and How):

  1. What: What are mobile apps for learning?
  2. Why: Why you should invest on them?
  3. How: How exactly can they be integrated into your learning strategy?

What Are Mobile Apps For Learning?

Mobile apps are a type of delivery format designed for offline viewing of Learning material for learners on mobile devices. Although the course needs to be downloaded to the device first using internet connection, it can be accessed without internet access from the mobile device for subsequent visits once the course has been downloaded to the device. Internet access is also necessary when it comes to tracking of learners’ progress via Learning Management Systems.

People are increasingly taking to mobile apps and the number of mobile app downloads that take place every year justifies that. According to a report, the number of mobile apps forecasted to be downloaded worldwide in 2017 stands at a whopping 2.6 million! It comes as no surprise that mobile apps for learning are an area you must invest on.

What Are The Advantages Of Using Mobile Apps For learning?

There’s a reason why more and more companies are pumping money into mobile learningtechnology and mobile app development year after year. Mobile apps are one of the hottest mobile learning trends driving the market today. According to reports, the global annual revenue generated by mobile apps will be $70 billion by 2017. The format comes with a host of benefits after all.

Some of the benefits of mobile apps are:

    • Ideal for people looking for information on the move.
    • Suited for online as well as offline viewing.
    • Immensely popular with Millennials.
    • Facilitate higher completion rates.
    • Provide access to just-in-time information.
    • Ideal for performance support.

How Can You Use Mobile Apps For Learning To Uplift Your Existing Learning Strategy?

Mobile apps are a good fit for both formal as well as informal training.

They can be used to offer bite-sized formal training or supplement formal training.

When it comes to informal training needs, they are an ideal platform to offer Performance Support. They can be used as Performance Support Tools (PSTs) and embedded in the learners’ workflow. If they are made available to learners on their mobile devices, there will be greater chances of them using them for just-in-time information and on-the-job support.

There are many ways to integrate mobile apps for learning into your learning strategy. Specifically:

    1. For primary learning (formal training).
      Mobile apps can be used for formal training in the form of short learning nuggets and the nuggets could be part of a learning path
    2. As a supplement to formal training.
    • They can be used as pre- and post- assessments for formal training (online or blended).
    • They can also be used to showcase videos, examples, and scenarios to reinforce learning.

At EI Design, we have used mobile learning technology and mobile apps for learning for both formal learning as well as a Performance Support Tool. You can gain further insights on these through my previous articles:

    • How to boost your workforce performance with mobile apps.

Now, let’s see why it makes business sense to invest in mobile learning trends and integrate mobile apps for learning to enhance your current learning strategy.

Why Are Mobile Apps For Learning The Right Fit For Your Learning Strategy?

Here is my list of 10 reasons why mobile apps are the right fit for your learning strategy:

1. Flexibility Of Usage (For Learners).

According to a survey, people spend 30 hours a month on average on mobile apps. They have become part and parcel of people’s lives because of the flexibility and ease of looking up information that they offer. The power of mobile apps can be leveraged to offer training to learners even when they are not connected to internet.

2. High Completion Rates.

The anytime, anywhere flexibility that mobile learning technology and mobile apps offer help learners take the training when they “want to” rather than “have to”; thereby resulting in higher completion rates.

3. Engaging.

If you’re a smartphone user, you’d know that pretty much everything you do –dropping in a message to someone, hunting for a restaurant nearby, getting your daily scoop of news, and so on– is through apps. You’ve ditched your traditional SMS and switched to WhatsApp messaging for a simple reason that it’s far more lively and engaging and comes with a host of features. The formats of mobile apps and mobile learning technology for learning are remarkably different from traditional eLearning. They provide very high engagement to learners thereby increasing recall and retention manifold.

4. Appeal To Millennials.

We spoke about people spending 30 hours every month on mobile apps. When it comes to millennials, the number of hours spent on mobile apps shoots up to 90. Millennials love mobile apps and these survey figures second that. If you’re looking at creating engaging learning experiences for millennials and mobile apps aren’t on your list yet, you’re missing out on something big time!

5. Easy To Push Updates.

Mobile apps are extremely user-friendly and offer organizations the flexibility to easily push updates.

6. Enable You To Further Leverage Trending Approaches.

From the social media platform you visit most frequently to your favorite game on your mobile device, they all come packaged as mobile apps. Here’s a huge cue you can take to enhance the impact of your training using mobile apps. You can leverage further on trends like microlearning, social learning, and gamification.

7. Can Be Adapted To Varied Training Needs.

You can craft mobile apps for learning to address varied training needs including compliance, soft skills, products, and change management.

8. Can Be Used For Performance Support.

Mobile apps are designed to offer “just-in-time” information. They are ideal for Performance Support intervention and can directly influence the organizational mandate to push the learning acquisition to its application on the job.

9. Can Be Used As A Supplement To ILT/Blended Training.

You can support ILT or blended delivery through assets (pre/post work-shop) or Performance Support Tools. An intervention like this will show a drastic gain in application of gained knowledge on the job.

10. Positive Impact On ROI On Your Training Spend.

By improving the learner reaction, learning gain, and finally its application on the job, mobile apps for learning will provide a demonstrable gain on ROI.

You can also take a look at this video to see why mobile apps are the right fit for your learning strategy:

I hope this article triggers a re-evaluation of your existing learning strategy and helps you leverage on mobile learning trends such as mobile apps for learning. If you have any queries or need support on integrating mobile apps for learning into your learning strategy, do contact me.

You can also refer to my previous articles:

Go “Social”: How the Social Learning Theory makes a case for Social Learning – Micro Blog

We all indulge in some form of Social Learning or other. According to Richard Walters and Albert Bandura who proposed the Social Learning Theory, we learn from each other through observation, imitation and modelling. The Social Learning Theory that Walters and Bandura came up with is regarded as a bridge between the cognitive and behaviourist learning theories as it touches upon aspects such as memory, motivation and attention.

Walters and Bandura have made some interesting observations. According to the Social Learning Theory first outlined by them in 1963 and then discussed in further detail in 1977:

  • We learn when we observe other people’s attitudes, behaviours and the outcomes of those behaviours.
  • The learning that takes place is not purely behavioural; it is a cognitive process that takes place in a social context.
  • Our learning involves observation, extraction of information from those observations and making decisions about the performance of the behaviour. Thus, learning can occur without an observable change in behaviour.
  • Mere reinforcement is not entirely responsible for learning although it does play a major role.
  • We are not passive recipients of information. Aspects such as cognition, environment and behaviour all mutually influence each other for our learning to take place.

The social media phenomenon that we see today justifies a lot of these observations they made with their Social Learning Theory. Almost everything has gone “social” today and if this phenomenon is not leveraged for learning, you’re missing out on something that a majority of your learner population relates to.

Want more insights on how Social Learning can turn things around for Corporate Training initiatives? Check out our Online Portfolio or schedule a call with our Solution Architecting Team.

Check out these resources: