Universitat Politècnica de València (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2024 Proceedings
Publication year: 2024
Pages: 6701-6707
ISBN: 978-84-09-59215-9
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2024.1758
Conference name: 18th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 4-6 March, 2024
Location: Valencia, Spain
Soft skills contribute to the holistic development of students and prepare them to face the challenges of the academic and working world. Moreover, in many cases, soft skills are as valued as technical skills in today's labour market.

Universities are increasingly recognising the importance of soft skills and are implementing various strategies to incorporate them into students’ educational experience. Most commonly, universities train their students in soft skills integrated into the curriculum. However, there are other ways in which universities are approaching soft skills development, such as experiential learning, formative assessments, mentoring and counselling, student clubs and organisations, or specific courses, seminars and workshops that focus on soft skills development.

The Universitat Politècnica de València is currently facing a project that consists on simplifying the current 13 soft skills to 5 soft skill dimensions, to clearly reflect the competences that engineering students should acquire. Such soft skills include:
(i) environmental and social commitment;
(ii) innovation and creativity;
(iii) teamwork and leadership,
(iv) effective communication, and
(v) responsibility and decision-making.

This paper focuses on the effective communication soft skill, and it is applied in the Purchasing subject of the Master's Degree in Organizational and Logistics Engineering. To this extent, the authors propose the use of Playmobil-Pro gamification tool to specifically deal with the supplier negotiation phase within the purchasing process. Playmobil-Pro allows to work with metaphors to get to know the expectations of the participants. In this case study, Playmobil-Pro will allow the students, that acquire the role of buyers, to deeply understand the behavior of the opposite negotiator, the supplier. The gamification workshop will enable to analyse the buyer and supplier behavior, and to extract conclusions to make decisions in the process of negotiation. Thus, the students will define negotiation strategies and how to approach them from the perspective of the purchasing company, taking as a starting point the knowledge of the of the supplier negotiation profile offered by the Playmobil-Pro methodology.
Gamification, negotiation process, engineering, university.