Handmade cosmetics firm Lush is using infrastructure from British cloud provider Memset to roll out its game-based, interactive, digital staff training programme across Europe.

The training programme, called Lush Quests, takes the form of an interactive story and introduces new staff to Lush’s brand and products with challenges and rewards. Following its completion, employees complete a 10-minute quiz to confirm their understanding of the material.

To date, over 2,000 employees have undertaken this online training programme based on gamification – the notion of applying game-like design principles in an effort to make users engage more closely with a product.

The programme is delivered using Memset's private cloud platform. The user interfaces and the HTML5 game user interface itself are powered by common REST-based web services, which allow them to scale up and down, meaning that several hundred employees can download, install and play simultaneously.

A centralised SQL database is used to store application data and training results, and images and video can be leveraged across user interfaces. Memset has also provided five Miniservers (virtual servers with dedicated resources) to host German, French, Italian, Spanish and English versions of the training programme.

“Using Memset’s cloud service has enabled us to quickly roll out the programme to other countries faster than we anticipated. We’ve been able to take snapshots of the Miniserver and recreate it quickly in the other languages required,” said Richy Baxter-Freeman, International Support for Lush cosmetics who was responsible for the IT set up of the training programme.

“We can monitor traffic and performance via Memset’s control panel and easily scale up or down as load patterns fluctuate, which means we only pay for what we need in terms of compute infrastructure. In addition, we benefit from the maintenance, support, and deployment automation provided by Memset to reduce our operational costs.”

The benefits of gamification have become widely accepted by the largest IT companies around the world. Industry research firm Gartner predicts that by 2015, more than 50 percent of enterprises working on innovative processes will be using some form of gamification.

In particular, it has been touted as a way to drive sustainability strategies within organisations, by encouraging employees to engage in social competition with each other, rather than seeing corporate environmental initiatives as a chore.

“As a keen gamer myself, I understand how important the reliability, security and responsiveness of the infrastructure is, to ensure the optimum interaction with the programme,” said Kate Craig-Wood, MD of Memset.