A till-training game for McDonald's



McDonald's offers good value, quality food and a fantastic experience for its customers. But it also has a focus on the hundreds of communities across the UK where its restaurants are based and the thousands of people who work in those.

Key project features

Systems Training
Performance Improvement


Deliver business results... and fun

McDonald’s came to Kineo with a challenge. A launch of new till system was fast approaching. They wanted to give learners an opportunity to learn in a safe environment to practice and learn from mistakes, without customers getting frustrated. And they wanted business results: improved accuracy, reduced service times, and higher spend. And make it fun. Well, we like a challenge…  


A game-based approach

Working together, Kineo and McDonald’s created a till training game to make it addictive, purposeful and fun. Using an innovative approach, a game was designed to target skill and knowledge – using a simulation of the new till system so that learner’s ability to take orders could be tested and using questions to assess knowledge on how to deliver the best customer experience.

Even better than the real thing

The till game is real time and full on. Learners deal with customer orders, going between customer conversation and till entry, whilst being timed, to display their knowledge of the till system and keep their customers happy.

Lifelines, bonuses and panel elements were also added to enhance the gamification feel, but to also further engage the learner. Some of the features included:

  • Perfection: Get the order 100% correct
  • Three on the bounce: Get 3 correct orders in a row
  • Beat the clock: Finish the game with time to spare
  • Happy camper: Keeping the customer satisfaction meter high
  • Time to spare: Complete the order before the timer runs out.


They're loving it

This was the first time McDonald’s have used a game for learning. Despite not being mandatory, the till game had 145,000 visits in year 1 and remains the most popular employee portal page McDonald’s have ever launched. 85% of crew members believed the till training game helped them understand the new system and will help with their future performance.  

Great learner engagement

Here’s what some of the crew had to say:

“It really got the competitive edge going – we were talking about our scores after playing.”

“It was good to learn about the new system before trying it out in front of customers.”

Real business results

And the holy grail – did it achieve its performance and business objectives? Since the implementation of the till game, McDonald’s have measured:

  • a reduction of 7.9 seconds for each till service
  • an increase in their average cheque by 15p (totalling an increased average of £18,000 per restaurant). That’s £23.7 million in the UK alone.

It's also award-winning, taking a silver Learning Technologies Award in the 2014 LPI Learning Awards and Gold at the 2014 Elearning Awards, with the judges stating:

"Delivering high success rates, cost savings and a greater uptake of training and knowledge retention, the game has been an unquestionable success. This was an entry which has had a clear an ongoing business impact, spreading virally around the business with great learner engagement. This simple well-designed game stands out as a great example of how games can be used in learning."

Is gamification worth it?

McDonald’s think so. Mark Reilly, Corporate Training Manager, shares his thoughts:

“This tool was placed quietly on our crew website with no advertising or direction to the restaurants. The crew found it, played it, re-played it and shared it. Its power was in the fact that it challenged people to try-out and experiment to succeed and improve, which is what the most effective learning is all about."

As a business, we have seen significant improvements in customer experience, sales and profit metrics as a result. The success of the project has led to a wider cascade of the till game across European markets, and to the development of further game-based learning to support the introduction of new initiatives across the business.”


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