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Gamification is the next wave of education. Adding points, badges, and rankings to your training courses can motivate your students and help them retain information for longer while fully understanding their importance. Making learning more fun means the viewer actually cares about the material and absorbs the information, rather than just completing the course because it’s required. Students benefit from the courses, and educators’ time is well-spent — everyone wins.

Near-Life is a learning management system specializing in gamified training. You can award points for specific decisions and empower employees to choose their paths and see their progress. Unlike traditional, non-gamified videos, gamified scenario-based learning motivates employees to master new skills while having fun. Vyond readers who are interested in trying Near-Life have access to this special offer.

1. Interview employees

It’s hard to create helpful training if you never ask employees what they wish to learn. Interviews give you the space to dig into their needs and come up with potential solutions together.

Tell your employee what the goal of the interview is when you set up the meeting. Let them know they’re not in trouble; you’re just trying to understand what skills you need to upskill to help them grow. This sets them at ease and gives them time to think about the skills they want to learn.

Start with simple questions and small talk at the start of the interview. These build rapport and get employees in the rhythm of answering. Your only goal is for them to open up to you.

Once you sense they are comfortable, ask them to describe a day in their work lives. Listening to what they do, think, and feel allows you to pinpoint what they are struggling with. The skill you will teach must resolve this challenge.

2. Create a script and a storyboard

A script and storyboard set the tone and structure of your video. Before producing your video, your team can review these documents to give feedback and prepare themselves for the production stage. 

The script’s words set the video’s tone. That’s what’s going to convey the actual lesson you’re trying to teach, so make sure it’s understandable for your viewer. You don’t want them to be confused when you’re trying to help them. 

Arrange your script in a sequence that naturally flows from one scene to the next. Scene A should lead to Scene B, B to C, and so on until the video ends. While plot twists work in movies, your employees shouldn’t ask themselves how you arrived at a conclusion. They’ll just be confused, and confusion is what you’re trying to prevent. 

Your storyboard shows the imagery that will appear on screen throughout the video. By looking at it, your team can suggest visual changes to make a scene clearer or more engaging. Create a storyboard using our free template to save time. Draw simple sketches in each square to implement feedback efficiently. If you can convey a scene using stick figures, do so. Done is better than flawless.

3. Make your video with Vyond

Bring your storyboard to life using Vyond. It’s an intuitive animation software most people can use after a few minutes of playing with it. 

Log into Vyond and create a new project from the homepage to launch the animation interface. Enter the Character panel in the left corner and pick a character you like. If you can’t find one that matches your exact needs, click on “Create New Character” to design one from scratch. You can choose between hundreds of customization options to make your character look like anyone you want, such as a high-level coworker.

Now make your speaker move using Actions and Motion Paths. “Actions” are specific movements, like waving, while Motion Paths take the character from point A to point B. Combining these two would, for example, make your character move from one side of the screen to the other while waving. You can find both menus in the top right corner of Vyond.

The final step is to record your dialogue. Do it in a furnished room with few windows to avoid echo and distortions. This could be your work building’s lounge, conference room, or someone’s office. You should also position your mic at a height between your chin and sternum. This is where your voice sounds best. Set everything, and then use Vyond to record your voice lines.

4. Upload your video to Near-Life

Games are addictive. The player’s brain releases dopamine when they do something positive, like passing a level or getting a reward, which helps them focus, learn, and strive. Incorporating game-like elements into your training with Near-Life allows you to use that dopamine reaction for learning.

Near-Life turns your training into a game-like experience. It adds a point system and leaderboard like most other LMSs, but it also allows employees to choose how to respond to specific events. Videos take a turn depending on their chosen path or finish if workers make an irreversible mistake. This freedom to progress based on your own judgment keeps dopamine flowing, motivating employees to complete videos.

The platform uses a node-based system. Each node (scene) can lead to other nodes depending on what the viewer does. For your first courses, you should stop the video when employees make the wrong decision. You won’t have to animate as many scenes since there’s only one correct path to take. You should create videos with different paths and endings after familiarizing yourself with Vyond and Near-Life.

You can add your first video to Near-Life just a few seconds after logging onto the platform:

  1. Click on “Create project +”
  2. Set a name for your project
  3. Add a new scenario
  4. Set the time someone can take to decide, the points they must score to finish the video successfully, and how the decision buttons will look
  5. Click on Upload Media at the bottom right and select your video file

5. Design an eye-catching thumbnail

Your video thumbnail should capture your employees’ attention and encourage them to click the video. The colors you choose can do just that, or they can drive potential viewers away.

Use colors vastly different from each other to draw attention. Find these combinations with your favorite tool from art class: the color wheel. Colors opposite from each other contrast the most, like yellow and purple. However, it’s okay not to use these bold combinations if they don’t match your brand’s personality. Those looking for color combinations that don’t contrast quite as much can pick hues closer to each other, like blue and green.

Your images should accurately describe the video’s content. Not doing so can reduce the number of employees who take and share your training. Put yourself in their shoes. What would you do if you click one or two thumbnails and the video discusses anything but what you expected? Click the third one? No, you will probably do something else. 

You can create a captivating, accurate thumbnail using Canva. It has millions of photos and a nearly infinite number of colors you can use to create your thumbnail.

6. Analyze what could improve

Creating your training course is just the beginning. You need to look at your course’s metrics to discover how employees interact with it to know its strengths and weaknesses. 

Near-Life collects data on how employees engage with your interactive video. You will learn the number of people playing, the number of scenarios available, and whether people successfully pass your videos. If many employees are making the wrong decisions, the options are likely too similar, or the video that taught the correct answer is unclear. Rework these options to teach the viewer exactly what they should do. Update your storyboard and animations with new charts, scenes, and dialogues that make each video clearer.

Implement the changes and check if more people are choosing the right options. If they are, then more employees are benefitting from your video.


Use Vyond with Near-Life for gamified employee training

It’s nearly impossible to come up with the right set of options and scenes on the first try. Your training might be too easy, so people might not feel a sense of progress and motivation to keep going. Or you might make it too hard, discouraging people from playing. You need a tool to create and iterate on videos at scale, which is what Vyond helps you do.

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