In the dynamic landscape of professional development, we were tasked by Lloyds Bank to create an innovative, gamified learning solution to transform the way critical thinking skills are developed across their organisation.

Our unique solution helped to reshape traditional learning approaches in the finance sector.

The challenge: Developing employee critical thinking

Lloyds Bank was seeking to launch a new learning programme to enhance the critical thinking skills of their employees. This programme required a diverse approach, including modules tailored for foundational and advanced proficiency levels. The primary challenge was to develop a “signature solution” that would not only captivate and engage but also serve as a diagnostic tool to direct learners to the most appropriate modules. Additionally, the solution needed to be developed within a stringent budget and a tight three-month timeline, using an off-the-shelf authoring tool, Storyline 360, for easy future maintenance by the client.

The solution: Learning through gamification

Our team developed an immersive virtual escape room which featured:

  • a series of critical thinking puzzles targeting different skills such as evaluation, reasoning, interpretation, creative thinking, analysis, and problem solving
  • an immersive 360° exploratory environment, enhanced with music, sound effects and animations to create a compelling user experience
  • gamification elements such as timer countdowns, cryptic clues and randomisation for replayability
  • detailed analytic features with personalised feedback mechanisms, including a final rating of novice, cultivated, or genius, and a debriefing session to guide further learning
Implementation process: Agile development and collaborative success

The adoption of an agile methodology facilitated a flexible and responsive development process, enabling regular client reviews and adaptations based on real-time feedback. This strategic approach helped to maintain the stringent timelines and budget constraints while delivering a high-quality educational tool.

The core team leveraged innovative tools such as virtual whiteboarding for collaborative design workshops and moodboards to set a clear visual direction from the outset. Importantly, the lines of communication were continuously open between the subject matter experts and project teams. This streamlined the process and ensured that the project met its original goals with efficiency and precision.

The results: Enhanced learner engagement

The escape room quickly became a flagship product for Lloyds Bank's new critical skills programme. Feedback from the participants highlighted the engaging nature of the puzzles and their practical application in developing critical thinking skills. Key achievements of the programme included:

  • enhanced learner engagement with critical thinking concepts
  • increased voluntary participation in the broader learning programme, supported by a targeted client marketing campaign
  • recognition of the escape room as a high-impact learning tool within the organisation

Kim Lilley, Curriculum Design Manager at Lloyds Bank, praised the project, emphasising the effectiveness of the collaboration and the high-quality outcomes. She noted the team’s approach to meetings was “purposeful, with clear outcomes and timely,” which significantly contributed to the smooth execution of the project. Kim was particularly impressed by the “visual creativity,” stating she was “blown away” by how these elements enhanced the learning experience. Regarding the project’s timeline, she acknowledged, “I know from the outset we were challenging on our deadlines, but through really effective, collaborative working, we met it comfortably.” Additionally, the agile development approach reinforced her trust in the process, as it allowed for “short live developments which resulted in an end product that met expectations with no surprises.”

Our critical thinking escape room exemplifies how creative solutions and collaborative approaches can result in impactful learning tools that engage and educate. This showcases the potential of gamified learning in professional development and sets a benchmark for future innovations looking to combine fun, engagement and functional learning.

To find out how you can create more effective and engaging learning solutions, contact us 
at Let’s transform the way your organisation learns and grows.

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