The Octalysis Framework and the Gamification of Training

Designing Digitally


gamification in corporate training

The gamification in corporate training has made the experience richer and deeper for learners. Employees are more invested and are well-prepared to do their jobs and serve customers and clients.

Yu-kai Chou is known as a pioneer of gamification. Yu-kai Chou has created a framework for gamification that has been useful for increasing learner engagement and motivation. It’s called the Octalysis Framework.

The Octalysis Framework

The Octalysis Framework is a chart that details the Eight Core Drives of Gamification. The value of this chart is in helping a corporation discover areas where their elearning program may be lacking.

Here are the eight components:

  • Meaning. People like to feel that the work they are doing matters. When gamification adds meaning to a project or activity, learning and understanding are much more likely. Contributing for the good of others can be a great motivator.
  • Accomplishment. The possibility of achievements can encourage a learner to keep working hard and doing their best. For example, if an employee can earn a badge for learning new skills they are prompted to keep acquiring more knowledge.
  • Creative expression. Learners feel empowered when they are given opportunities to use their creativity in problem-solving. Their critical thinking skills are developed and they have the confidence to express themselves, oftentimes for the greater good of the company.
  • Ownership. One aspect of the gamification of training that can have a significant motivating impact is giving the users a feeling of ownership. Customized branded gamification provides learners with a connection and feeling of ownership. Using learners to test pilot training is another means to promote ownership.  Being able to access the training on their own schedule during downtime also encourages ownership.
  • Social pressure. When an activity allows users to see the progress and rankings of other learners, their natural competitive drive kicks in and they are motivated to do their best in order to rise to the top. On the flip-side, is the feeling of mentorship, or a desire to help their coworkers perform better.
  • Scarcity. This component plays to the feeling of people wanting what they can’t have. While this isn’t always a part of gamification of training in the workplace, the principle behind it can add value.
  • Unpredictability. People have an innate sense of curiosity. When training is gamified in such a way as to add a level of unpredictability, learners are engaged and motivated to keep working and pushing on in order to find out what will happen next.
  • Loss and avoidance. Sometimes learners come to the point in an activity where they feel like they have come too far to quit. They don’t want to lose their progress and they can be influenced by the time they have already invested.

What does it mean for the gamification of training?

As corporations make decisions about the best training programs to utilize with their workforce, they can use the Octalysis Framework as a guide to make sure the activities they choose aren’t missing any important elements. Keep in mind that every good elearning activity doesn’t have to include all eight of these components. Each learning game or gamification program should be based around the specific objectives and the needs of the individual learners.

Contact Designing Digitally Inc., today to learn how they incorporate the Octalysis Framework into their gamification designs to enhance the learner’s experience.