The Growing Demand for VR in Workplace
The history of virtual reality goes back in time to the 30s of the 20th century, when it was first mentioned in a book. But the first VR headset was invented in 1957, although it was used in minimal applications and conditions.
The main purpose of virtual reality was to give one to four people a chance to live in a three-dimensional simulated world that is entirely made up and based on an illusion. Soon enough, more headsets, gloves, devices, and hand controllers were invented to enrich the VR experience, allowing users to enjoy a new taste of gaming and entertainment in general.
Today, virtual reality at workplace is a concept that most, if not all companies, are eager to put into action. This technology is currently incorporated in a lot more than just creating a fun game or an engaging show.
VR can actually change how work is done and can be implemented in several business operations to help the company optimize its resources, cut down its costs, and maximize its revenues.
At WeAR Studio, we understand the importance of virtual reality and appreciate that this outstanding technology is yet to be used to its full potential. So, if you want to learn how VR can change your workplace environment and impact several business operations, keep on reading.
Why Are Virtual Reality Innovations Becoming More Popular At Work?
Despite not being fully used to its true potential just yet, we can safely say that we’re living in an era where virtual reality applications and development are only going to go forward from now on. As a result, this new technology is expected to boom and become more popular in the near and far future.
In the past, VR applications were solely limited to entertainment, gaming, and later marketing purposes. However, things have changed, as this technology is expected to impact the workplace for several reasons. Here are some reasons why VR applications are becoming more popular.
- The widespread use of virtual reality and augmented reality applications is expected to create a hot demand for special skills, expanding the learning and working opportunity for more people. While VR and AR created about 800,000 job opportunities in 2019, this number is expected to increase to more than 23 million jobs by the year 2030.
- Virtual reality applications are extremely versatile. The same application can be used for various industries and manipulated to match the level of users. This is why this technology is currently successfully used by professional companies, not-for-profit organizations like hospitals, as well as educational and training facilities.
- Because the technology is relatively new and not widely used, it represents a competitive advantage.d As a result, this can be a great opportunity for any company in an established market, where it can offer something that the competitors can’t provide.
Due to these reasons, the demand for virtual reality technology and its various applications is currently increasing and is expected to do so in the future. This is why lots of young people are currently studying several skills that qualify them to work in this new market. These skills include software development, learning how to maintain Unity and other VR systems, and improving their experience in developing 3D objects and games for VR.
What are the Factors that Impact Using VR At Work?
Virtual reality uses a 3D computer-generated environment or world to engage users and evoke their senses. This concept has been successfully used in the entertainment industry through VR games that put the user in a new world where they can see, hear, and manipulate 3D objects.
Companies can also enhance their workplace experience by incorporating VR applications. These include using VR for marketing, training, designing, maintenance, and other purposes.
Recent events have actually contributed to the increase in dependence on VR and creating applications that rely on this technology to facilitate several business processes.
With the enormous amounts of data available, companies are able to create models that show a specific concept rather than using documentation or images. For example, creating a VR model to introduce a new product or to discuss the shortcomings of a previous one can help the company focus on successful business operations and be more aware of its points of strength.
In most companies, stakeholders’ contradicting interests can delay the launch of a product or a service. Virtual reality applications represent a great way to introduce new concepts to stakeholders and discuss their potential by showing how they can be used to increase the company’s revenues.
Due to the rise in remote working conditions, people were able to use virtual reality for better communication. Therefore, it represents a practical tool for creating a simulated world that would allow employees to do their work without actually being present at the workplace.
Virtual reality innovations also allow companies to benefit from the expertise of highly trained employees or experts at multiple locations. Experts don’t have to fly in for training sessions or to explain a new concept to the company’s employees. They can also work with different departments and at multiple locations, all at the same time.
How Can VR Be Used in the Workplace?
Virtual reality allows users to learn, see, and manipulate virtual objects that don’t exist in a fun, stress-free, and safe setting. Because the created simulation can be highly flexible, people can work remotely, repeat prototypes without wasting the company’s resources, and experience a concept in a tangible form to assess its potential.
As a matter of fact, the fun element is actually one of the perks of using VR in the workplace, even if it’s used for an extremely serious purpose. Employees would be interested in trying this new technology and exploring its potential because it’s new. Here are some cool ways VR innovations will change the nature of the workplace and business operations in various industries.
VR for Human Resources
Virtual reality technology is a successful tool that the human resources department can use to establish a workplace policy. For example, virtual reality applications can be used in inclusion and diversity training sessions to discuss issues like discrimination, violence, and harassment using a created reality without dealing with the risk of a real situation in the workplace.
New employees can also use VR applications to experience what the real work environment will be like, so they’re more prepared for what they’re expected to do. In addition, by engaging new recruits mentally and physically in a virtual reality simulation, they’ll feel more connected to the company and will be more understanding of the nature of the job.
At the same time, the Human Resources department can assess the potential of different recruits by creating real-like scenarios to test their potential and see if they’re fit for the job. Virtual reality can facilitate the screening process when new employees are hired and will improve the connections between the recruiter and the applicant.
In addition, the interview process will be more efficient with the introduction of virtual reality. Instead of remote video or audio interviews, VR can create a virtual interviewing environment where both the recruiter and the applicant can engage and interact better.
VR for Safe Training
Virtual reality applications can create a safe environment for training new and old employees when they’re expected to work in volatile or dangerous environments and settings. If the maintenance employees are expected to work in extreme or harsh conditions, virtual training will create a safe and stress-free learning environment, where employees and maintenance personnel can tackle different scenarios.
This technology is used in the aviation, automobile, and space industry, providing the employees with all the needed training that allows them to act promptly and appropriately in case of an emergency. Another application is in the oil and gas industry. When a leak happens, the situation becomes so volatile that employees need to be trained to take fast and precise decisions to prevent a disaster from occurring. Virtual reality training programs can help employees learn from their mistakes, so they’re more able to handle these challenging situations successfully in the future.
Not only is VR used in more challenging training situations, but in fun settings as well. For example, many companies like KFC have included VR elements into their training programs to help the new employees feel more relaxed at the workplace. They also make the training sessions more fun.
VR for Productivity
Virtual reality creates a simulated situation that allows the company’s management to experiment, test, and assess various production techniques in order to find the optimized solution that generates the highest revenues. Without wasting the company’s resources, the management can change the production processes and their order to find the best way to achieve its goals.
VR applications also create the chance for remote work. Employees from various departments and locations can collaborate in real-time to deliver a solution to a problem without leaving their stations. As a result, employees can finish more projects and work faster while reducing the company’s costs like transportation and overhead costs.
VR in Marketing
This is by far one of the most successful and widely used applications of VR in the workplace. The marketing department can use virtual reality to showcase a new concept or explore the potential of a current one. Using a simulated reality, the marketing department can better explain why this product or service excels and prove that it offers a real benefit to stakeholders.
Virtual reality is also a great tool that the marketing department can use to improve the company’s image. By designing virtual reality games, filters, and applications, people will feel more engaged with the brand as they can experience its products and services in a fun setting.
In addition, this virtual reality content is highly shareable, and the potential and current customers are likely to share it across different social media platforms. This is why lots of companies are switching to virtual reality in order to establish and improve their social media marketing policies.
VR in Sales
After a purchase is made, virtual reality applications can be used to improve and revolutionize the way the company and its customers interact with each other. Customer support services are likely to show a huge improvement when this technology becomes more widespread.
A customer support representative will prove to the customers that they’re around and offer help to create a first-class customer service experience. In case of a problem, the representative can virtually explain how to maintain or fix a malfunctioning product. At the same time, VR can show customer support employees how to act and what customers actually expect in different situations.
What Are the Challenges that Face Implementing VR Solutions for the Workplace?
Despite being one of the most valuable tools that can be used to enhance the work environment and improve the way business is done, implementing virtual reality solutions for the workplace is still facing several challenges that limit the use of this new and promising technology.
- Data security and privacy are two main concerns that companies need to be aware of. There are still more laws to be issued to govern the use and implementation of virtual reality applications to ensure that data is safe and is only used by the right parties.
- Some users don’t react well to virtual reality simulations. Physical effects like anxiety and an increase in heartbeat rates can be experienced and eventually put off some users from using this technology, in spite of all its amazing benefits.
- Identity problems represent another concern. Creating VR avatars can open up the doors to several ethical and psychological issues. Will employees be able to choose their avatars based on their current genders, or are they allowed to create avatars according to their own preferences? Such questions need to be tackled before engaging employees and managers in VR solutions that allow them to interact together.
- The misuse of VR applications can be a major concern for the company implementing the technology. Employees might not be aware of the real potential of the technology and might be used to doing business in a traditional way. This is why they might be unknowingly taking VR applications too lightly. Some employees might also deliberately misuse VR applications for fun instead of focusing on business operations because they don’t feel that the created simulation is real enough.
- Sexual harassment and violence in virtual reality applications should also be dealt with. Since there’s no law to define the definition and impact of harassment in the VR world, more people might be uncomfortable about using the technology. Moreover, there’s still no clear policy of how to react to an act of harassment and violence or how to respond to VR crimes that have been committed in the VR world.
To some users, it might seem unreal, while it feels realistic to the person who has experienced it and will eventually affect their productivity and feelings about the workplace. Nevertheless, some countries like Belgium have already taken action to protect users from VR crimes.
Use VR At Your Workplace Today
In order to establish your status in the industry and improve your market share, you need to keep up with the latest technologies that can help your business boom. This is why at WeAR Studio, we offer customized solutions to create the right VR experience for your business.
Contact us today and introduce your business to the world of virtual reality and its potential. Our experts will walk you through the whole process, so you can depend on us and what we offer. The future is only a few clicks away.