Environmental, Health and Safety News, Resources & Best Practices | EHS Insight

Using Safety Gamification to Increase Awareness and Engagement

Written by EHS Insight Resources | June 23, 2020 at 5:00 PM

What do you think about when you think of safety? EHS protocols? OSHA regulations? PPE? Chances are, you think about the core, recognized elements of workplace safety. You may not necessarily think about games.

Yet games – or rather, the elements that draw us into games – are an incredibly powerful teaching tool. They’re a way to make content relevant and interesting for your employees, and as any teacher will tell you, making content relevant and engaging is half the battle.

Here’s a closer look at how safety gamification works and why it can be such a great tool for EHS professionals.

What Is Gamification?

Gamification is the application of game design principles to non-game experiences to make them more fun and engaging. It incorporates a number of psychological concepts centered on motivation, personality traits, and human behavior in order to harness people’s basic behavior and motivate them to achieve a specific goal.

In the case of a game, that goal would be to win the game. In safety, however, the goal is to engage in safe behavior, and you can motivate employees to get involved in safety by using gamification to draw on motivation.

Note that we’re not necessarily talking about playing a game. You can still apply the motivating elements of a game without necessarily turning the exercise into a game.

Benefits of Safety Gamification

Even without creating a game in its own right, you can still see the benefits of safety gamification.

For one thing, it makes safety training more accessible to employees. They may not be able to connect with safety regulations or rules, but they can connect with something fun (especially when the mechanisms of gamification help motivate them).

What’s more, safety gamification makes training more engaging. Listen, we get it – it’s an uphill battle to grab your employees’ attention when you’re talking about serious subjects like health and safety. And while gamification doesn’t eliminate the seriousness of the topics, it does introduce the topics in a way that helps employees get interested.

Techniques to Try

Because gamification revolves around human behavior and motivation, your techniques must also revolve around human engagement.

The best place to start is the source: games. Think about what features of games work to engage employees. We’re talking about activities with small rewards, positive feedback, and additional challenges.

That way, you can turn repetitive material into something interesting. Essentially, you’re connecting the teaching concepts to rewards so that your employees associate completion with something to look forward to.

The simplest technique for gamification is to turn your safety training quizzes into games. Attach challenges and rewards to employee progress. Better still if you can get employees to work together to bolster their progress.

Want to Improve Your Training?

Finding the right safety training techniques can sometimes feel like hunting for a needle in a haystack. When you’re looking to improve employee attention, getting employees to tune into the material successfully can be challenging.

Safety gamification is one toolkit to help with that. After gamification, it helps to have the right tools. That’s where we can help, with safety training software designed for busy EHS professionals like you.

Want to see our software in action? Get in touch today to learn more.