PepsiCo, the food and beverage manufacturer, has been transitioning its employee training to the virtual world, but found it difficult with its Lean Six Sigma (LSS) training program. LSS is derived from the Six Sigma management method that aims to improve customer satisfaction and bottom-line results.

Previously, PepsiCo had held in-person LSS training program sessions in which participants built with Lego bricks in order to simulate real-world problems. They were finding it difficult to recreate this exercise online, until an employee suggested creating sessions based on the popular video game, Minecraft. Minecraft is played in a 3D environment from a first-person perspective, where users can create entire virtual worlds.

They built a prototype training solution, and are now ready to bring that prototype to more than 300 employees this year. The program is available in seven languages and simulates a 3D PepsiCo warehouse. In the program, users mimic an imaginary distribution company that produces pallets with different products, ships those pallets to the warehouse, which then sends them to customers based on the orders received. The goal of the training is to use LSS tools to reduce waste and inefficiency in the shipping process.

According to Pepsico, Minecraft’s platform makes the training accessible even to those with little gaming experience, and its format is highly suitable for recreating the training that involved building with Lego pieces.

“Minecraft enables you to build with blocks, so the translation is completely intuitive for the learner and the instructor,” Molly Nagler, PepsiCo’s chief learning officer, states. “Using Minecraft to simulate a 3D PepsiCo warehouse enabled our teams to solve problems in a virtual teamwork environment and complete the LSS training in a fun, interactive and engaging way.”