EnergyLogic and The Energy Conservatory Put "Game of Homes" into Play
EnergyLogic welcomes The Energy Conservatory (TEC) as its cornerstone partner in the introduction of Game of Homes, EnergyLogic’s new, free gamification-based training platform for home performance professionals. As the first Game of Homes sponsor, TEC enjoys early marketing rights to pioneer players – exposing them to TEC’s specialized tools for creating more efficient, affordable and healthy buildings. In playing the game, home energy professionals gain valuable continuing education units (CEUs).
Gary Nelson, president of TEC, recognizes the value of Game of Homes for advancing the home performance industry. “We’re in alignment with EnergyLogic’s approach to training and growing the quality and caliber of professionals who work in this industry,” he said. “Putting training into a gaming package makes perfect sense to us. It is clearly working as a fun and effective way to get pros the development skills they need.”
Game of Homes takes a departure from traditional classroom and online training courses by applying gaming designs and concepts to learning scenarios that are interactive, engaging and entertaining. The scenarios are complex and challenging, and test and train good decision making. In playing the game, building pros gain valuable professional development with CEUs, which they can apply toward the Residential Energy Services Network (RESNET) and the Building Performance Institute (BPI). Game of Homes is geared to reach the approximately 35,000 home performance professionals in the U.S., as well as more than 100,000 home inspectors.
“Game of Homes offers users a fresh approach to the ‘death-by-PowerPoint’ training that plagues our industry,” said Matt Thornberry, training and education manager for EnergyLogic. “We believe that excellent training is critical to the success of the building science industry – and a more sustainable world. But our industry is historically guilty of offering training based on boring presentations and lectures. That’s not how people learn. People learn by doing,” he added.
For sponsors such as TEC, Game of Homes offers a unique opportunity to get brands and products directly in front of a highly targeted, influential group of professionals who will use and recommend the products. Additionally, sponsorships offer suppliers the chance to gather valuable insights, research and feedback about their products from qualified professionals.
EnergyLogic is forming relationships with other sponsoring companies that represent best-in-class products for the home performance industry. Corporate sponsorships enable EnergyLogic to offer Game of Homes at no cost to users.
Scenario-based Gaming Develops Critical Thinking
Game of Homes helps energy professionals become critical thinkers and make smarter decisions about ways to make homes efficient, safe, healthy and durable. Users are faced with decisions they must make about the home’s systems – from ventilation systems to furnace equipment to insulation materials – that simulate a home’s performance. These scenarios are developed based on real-world situations that experienced professionals have encountered in the field. For example, one situation involves a serious mold condition; another is based on a career-threatening condition in the home of a vocal coach. The game features actual products the pros use, making for a realistic online experience.
Game of Homes taps into people’s natural desire for competition, achievement and community status, using leaderboards, achievements and social interaction as techniques to deeply engage players as a community. “Many people are drawn to gaming because of the many instant rewards it offers, and the interaction they get from it,” said Thornberry. “Because they are faced with real-life situations and decisions, and can face these in a safe environment, they will benefit from the game just by working through it. Then they’ll apply what they learned in their own work,” he said.
Players can earn achievements through the accumulation of points awarded for correct decisions they make during the interactive scenarios and challenges. In addition, the system tracks points and issues professional development credits for various home energy certifications in the home performance industry.
Users sign up for Game of Homes for free at http://www.playgameofhomes.com. The Game of Homes video is available online.
Linda Lidov is the owner and founder of Highland Communication Works is a Denver-based boutique communication consultancy with experience working for nonprofits, philanthropic foundations, technology companies and government entities.
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