The increase of virtual reality in industries like gaming and entertainment made it possible for the technology to cross over into healthcare, manufacturing, construction, and more. Giving users immersive experiences that help them obtain deeper focus makes VR the perfect tool to help train new employees, refamiliarize old employees with standard operating procedures, and train high value employees that benefit companies worldwide. VR may have gone mainstream with entertainment, but it is by no means the only industry that can make use of this time and money saving technology. This article will discuss the global impact of virtual reality in training, how it can train high value employees, and industry specific use cases for VRT, as well as virtual reality training programs you can use to elevate your business in 2023.
Virtual Reality Global Impact
In a recent report by Grand View Research, the global virtual reality market size was valued at USD 28.41 billion in the year 2022. In the next seven years, it’s expected to increase with a compound annual growth rate of 13.8%. This increase in development includes investments into gear, like head mounted displays (HMDs), sensors, glasses, gloves, body suits, and software. This technology will be put to use in various industries, but driving the growth will be instructional training for mechanics, engineers, construction workers, healthcare technicians, and many more.
A PwC survey revealed that 51% of companies are in the process of integrating VR into their business strategy, or already have incorporated VR somewhere within their company structure. Many of these companies are opting to use virtual reality in a training capacity due to its ability to offer the trainees an environment free of distraction, while increasing their capacity to absorb information with a higher memory recall.
Training High Value Employees with Virtual Reality
Keys to training high value employees- i.e. an employee who is productive, has effective time management skills, provides value to the company culture, and contributes to the overall success of the business- are motivation, a good work environment, good leadership, and professional development opportunities. Skills needed to work effectively with others can be defined as either hard or soft skills, and virtual reality can train employees in either category. Here’s a look into how it can work.
Virtual reality offers the ability to create a space where work can be done confidently with the support of peers and leadership. When employees are trained well, work culture and productivity improves. VRT provides the user with the ability to learn every skill needed to capably perform job duties because they have already done the tasks within the virtual training environment. These actions translate directly over to the physical space, making it perfect for training employees with hard skills required for maintenance and repairs, operating heavy equipment, and other physically intensive industry specific skills.
But what about using VR for soft skills training? Soft skills are categorized in a way that makes them appear to be the result of another skill. For instance, making mistakes in a simulation makes the user more patient with themselves and others outside of the simulation. The byproduct of this is good leadership and interpersonal skills. Soft skills can be used in any industry and are not specific to any one. Every industry needs good leadership with confident and resilient employees.
Virtual reality is not only good at training employees with hard industry specific skills, but can also be a benefit to those in need of more soft skills training. With programs that offer the ability to practice public speaking, leadership training, and emotional intelligence, to name a few, virtual reality can be an effective part of an employee training strategy.
In addition, virtual reality is an easier, more time and cost-efficient way to test an employee’s skill level. These tests impart an employer with a variety of useful information critical to helping the employee train effectively in the field.
Virtual Reality Training in Construction
Safety training for construction purposes has always been a high priority, given the frequency of high-risk scenarios within the industry. Virtual reality is an excellent safety training method because it allows the trainee to gain confidence with the materials, tools, and other facets of the job that initial book work doesn’t. This helps them have more experience in high-risk scenarios without being physically put into that situation. Training precise and effective employees with virtual reality eliminates costly materials from the training process because the trainee is able to get real-time, hands-on experience with the subject matter. This makes them far more efficient in the on-the-job-portion of their training and allows them to waste less materials than traditional training.
Virtual Reality Training in Manufacturing
The manufacturing process is fraught with step, after step, after step of potential problems; from the beginning of the process in design, to the end of the process in production and sales. Training must happen at every stage and in every department to make each step of the manufacturing process run smoothly without any hiccups to derail everything. But training takes time and resources that are not always readily available; not to mention a trainer capable of taking the time from their schedule to help.
But with virtual reality training, employees can get a hands-on experience with products and materials and understand how it all fits in to the whole process. They can train on their own with direction from the simulation itself, allowing the human trainer to take their expertise and use it where it’s needed. Along with this is the ability to train on equipment maintenance and repairs. If a machine is downed, it can take days to weeks to get it fixed, but standard employees can use VRT to learn how to repair critical equipment so that the company experiences as little downtime as possible.
Virtual Reality Training in Healthcare
According to the previous PwC survey, 58% of consumers want to interact with their healthcare providers virtually, making virtual reality and virtual reality training the next step in patient management and care. Virtual reality training enables healthcare technicians to become acquainted with the company processes and develop beneficial practices that improve workflow, and reduce PPE costs wherever applicable. Surgical technicians benefit from the use of virtual reality when preparing for a tricky surgery or familiarizing themselves with otherwise unfamiliar or new and innovative surgical practices.
Companies Using Virtual Reality Training
In this very modern world, many companies have realized the necessity for better training practices. Companies like Walmart, Bank of America, and MGM Resorts are training their employees with VR technology to better handle the ins and outs of the business, have improved customer care, and develop security responses through their respective industries. Top companies are employing the use of virtual reality training because in most cases, it’s a superior method of onboarding and familiarizing employees with the company and its processes. Implementing VRT into your own business model will enable you to stay on par with, and even surpass competitor companies in terms of effectively trained employees.
Virtual reality has some very exciting developments for the coming year, and leading the way is virtual reality for training purposes. No matter the industry, training effective employees is a necessary fact of managing work flows and maintaining an ultimately successful business, which is why VR is not an industry specific technology. Instead, it can cross boundaries and give your company the tools it needs to succeed by way of top performing employees. XR Guru’s virtual reality training program helps improve job performance, enhance career skills, improve workplace safety, and improve soft skills all within a cost effective and safe environment. Be sure to visit XR Guru’s Immersive Learning Hub to learn more about how you can leverage this powerful training opportunity.