Training has long been a cornerstone of business operations with cost and complexity largely determined by corporate requirements and commitment. Traditionally, training methods have been classified into on-the-job training and off-the-job training. A preferred method is likely to be determined by what the organization does, and how training is facilitated. Generally, it is unlikely that much training other than theoretical is done off-the-job. With virtual and augmented reality increasingly capable of simulating complex training scenarios this is quickly changing.
Virtual reality simulations can increase learning efficiency, save time, and reduce costs in training.
Until now, the adoption of virtual training solutions has been motivated by tangible benefits such as cost and time savings and increased learning efficiency. However, quarantine and lock-down procedures paired with social distancing policies mean that traditional training methods are increasingly difficult to conduct. Everything from classroom-style theoretical training to on-the-job coaching has to be postponed or adapted to minimize physical contact between people. As previously discussed, virtual and augmented reality not only enables us to simulate anything but also to do so from wherever we wish. Therefore, many companies are finding that the answer to training during the pandemic is XR technology.
CASE STUDY: SJ’S VR TRAINING PLATFORM
Screenshot from the SJ virtual reality training application developed by Vobling.
An example of an organization utilizing the benefits of virtual training is SJ, the Swedish national railway operator that has implemented a VR training platform. In 6 months, SJ trained over 2,500 employees in VR. The platform reduces their reliance on specialized facilities, physical equipment, and operational shutdowns – Saving them considerable time and cost.
SJ is one example of many where immersive technologies are being utilized for training. Many companies in architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) are likewise exploring the benefits of implementing virtual training simulators. These industries are often driven by a need for realistic simulations of potentially hazardous scenarios.
XR technology has finally reached a point where mass adoption is viable, and there are few companies who don’t benefit from virtualizing training methodologies regardless of coronavirus related policies.