A few months back, a premium car brand had set up an information kiosk at the mall. They had put up a poster that they have some interesting games and demos. Being curious, I ventured to try out one of these demos. It was an amazing experience as they had used virtual reality to take the user through a simulated test drive. Virtual reality is a very exciting concept that is catching on very quickly but what is fascinating is that it is now being used for marketing, sales and training.
What is Virtual Reality Training?
In Virtual Reality (VR), a computer generated 3-Dimensional Replication/Simulation is created of real-life scenarios. Thus, Virtual Reality training is especially useful in situations that are hard to replicate in real life. For example, one would want the Military to be trained on dealing with different situations in war. However, these situations cannot and shouldn’t be replicated in the actual world. Virtual Reality to the rescue! VR allows the learner to immerse themselves in the simulated environment and learn skills that are very essential in responding to such a situation.
Why Virtual Reality Training?
· Very Engaging: -Firstly, it makes learning a lot more engaging, fun and visual for a learner. It’s the most innovative form of online training today. Also, over the next decade a large part of the target audience will be the video game, social media and tech obsessed Gen Z. Hence, it makes total sense to start investing in VR training, today.
·Experiential: -As pointed out earlier, VR allows learners to experience what they would in a real-life situation but in a simulated environment. Experiential learning (whether the experience is real, simulated or vicarious experience) is the best way to learn.
·Makes learning more effective: -VR engages all our senses and hence recall and retention of learning is higher. It caters to all learning styles. Whether you are a visual, auditory or kinesthetic learner, there's something in it for everyone. Additionally, while learning retention post classroom training is only 20%, it is up to 75% post VR training.
·Increases coverage:- You can now enable your employees across the globe to have the same, standardised experiential learning through VR. This ensures that a larger number of employees are covered through training interventions and the best part is that all of this can be achieved without any trainer dependency.
Where can Virtual Reality Training be used?
The answer is 'virtually' anywhere. Here are a few examples:-
Medical Industry:-VR Training is now being used to train medical reps on complex procedures, instruments and products. Especially for scenarios that cannot be replicated. I recently saw an innovative VR Training where the medical rep was being shown an emergency situation in pediatric care, through VR. He could interact with hotspots on the patient's body to check vitals and could also administer treatment virtually. So, not only was this 3D training but it also allowed the medical rep to interact with the characters as he/she would in a real-life scenario!
Construction:- VR Training can be used to train workers and employees on safety procedures to be followed while using hazardous equipment. In this way, they get to experience the perils of not following the safety protocol first hand, without having to actually go through such a horrendous experience. Better safe than sorry!
Automotive:-You want your sales and after sales reps to be fully trained on the engineering of the car. You want them to know what goes where and how the mechanics work. But you want to do so without disassembling the car. Well, you can do exactly that with VR Training. You can give your employees a real feel of all the parts of the car and even get them to fix things. Best of all, you can give them virtual test drives or even get them to walk in a customer's shoes by 'virtually' taking them to different car showrooms to experience how to give the best customer service.
Hospitality:-Restaurants and hotels benefit immensely from VR Training. I have seen trainings where restaurant and hotel staff are trained on how a customer experiences their hotel/restaurant. VR gives you the ability of showcasing the entire restaurant/hotel lobby and also allows staff to interact with customers and serve them. Thus, not only can they be trained on customer service, they can also learn how every aspect of the ambience of the place adds up to a good or bad customer experience.
Retail:- A lot of big giants in retail are waking up to what VR Training can do for them. They use it to train staff on how different store and product layouts can be used to promote sales. For instance, it is commonly known that candies, chocolates and such goodies are kept on the lower aisles of a departmental store. Wonder why? As it is within easy access of the ultimate shopper who you can't refuse-the tantrummy toddlers and pre-schoolers! VR also allows employees to view different types of customers across the store and decide who is disgruntled based on their body language and figure out how to help them.
That was just a small subset of industries that stand to benefit from VR Training. VR Training can be used in any industry. In fact, I have also seen companies use VR for inducting employees. They give them virtual tours of their office and also have the CEO addressing new employees virtually. Actually, I think it's time to show you what VR Training really is. Have a look at Canada’s first 360 video and virtual reality eLearning module that Pathways Training and eLearning Inc conceptualised with St. John’s Ambulance, to help people understand what to do in a mass causality situation.
So what are you waiting for? Donne your VR hat, wear your VR headset, put on your VR goggles and get started on your engaging VR Training journey!
Check out the amazing digital solutions Pathways is creating; their eLearning is truly the wave of the future. If you want to learn more about the digital options Pathways creates, you can contact us at 1-888-961-6011 ext 121 or email us at email@example.com
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