Employers are ultimately facing a dilemma, their workforce often needs to learn new skills, upgrade existing capabilities, or complete compliance training. Yet the new reality of remote and hybrid work has made traditional, in-person upskilling more challenging. Online and app-based courses can fill in some gaps, but not all of them. So how can employers deal with this challenge? Keep reading and find out…
What advantage does virtual reality have?
Virtual reality (VR) is well known for teaching hard skills and offering realistic simulations. With the rise of the metaverse, VR — one of several ways to enter the metaverse — is also growing more common. The PwC 2022 US Metaverse Survey found that 51% of companies are either in the process of integrating VR into strategy or have already built VR into at least one dedicated line of business. 34% said that one of the biggest metaverse benefits they currently enjoy or foresee is “a more effective way to develop and train our people.”
But many employees also need to learn soft skills, such as leadership, resilience, and managing through change. It’s often possible — and highly advantageous — to teach them too through VR and metaverse experiences.
There is a study of VR specially designed for soft skills training. Selected employees from a group of new managers in 12 US locations took the same training — designed to address inclusive leadership — in one of three learning modalities: classroom, e-learn, and v-learn (VR).
The results? The survey showed that VR can help business leaders upskill their employees faster, even at a time when training budgets may be shrinking and in-person training may be off the table.
Five benefits VR have in training skills
1. Employees in VR courses can be trained up to four times faster. US employees typically spend only 1% of their workweek on training and development, so employers need to be sure that they use that time productively. That’s where VR can help. What took two hours to learn in the classroom could possibly be learned in only 30 minutes using VR.
2. When learning soft skills, confidence is a key driver of success. In difficult circumstances, such as having to give negative feedback to an employee, people generally wish they could practice handling the situation in a safe environment. With VR, they can, because it provides the ability to practice in an immersive, low-stress environment, VR-based training results in higher confidence levels and an improved ability to actually apply the learning on the job. In fact, learners trained with VR were up to 275% more confident to act on what they learned after training — a 40% improvement over classroom and 35% improvement over e-learn training.
3. People connect, understand, and remember things more deeply when their emotions are involved. Simulation-based learning in VR allows individuals to feel as if they’ve had a meaningful experience. Three-quarters of learners surveyed said that during the VR course on diversity and inclusion, they had a wake-up call moment.
4. Today’s learners are often impatient, distracted, and overwhelmed. Many learners will not watch a video for its duration, and smartphones are a leading cause of interruption and distraction. With VR learning, users are significantly less distracted. In a VR headset, simulations and immersive experiences command the individual’s vision and attention. There are no interruptions and no options to multitask.
5. In the past, VR was too expensive, complicated, and challenging to deploy outside of a small group. Today, the cost of an enterprise headset ecosystem is a one-time fee. Companies of all sizes are developing compelling content, while vendors are creating software packages to enable non-VR developers to create their own content in a cost-effective way. Elsewhere, some big learning-management-system players are enabling VR content to be easily integrated into their platforms.
The value VR provides is unmistakable when used appropriately. In the study mentioned before, was found that, when delivered to enough learners, VR training is estimated to be more cost-effective at scale than classroom or e-learning. Because VR content initially requires up to a 48% greater investment than similar classroom or e-learn courses, it’s essential to have enough learners to help make this approach cost-effective.
VR likely won’t fully replace classroom training or e-learning anytime soon. But as the metaverse accelerates and remote work continues to grow, VR learning should be part of most companies. When done right, VR learning, in and out of the metaverse, includes the key elements of business expertise to tackle challenges, a human-centered experience, and technology that boosts productivity without sacrificing quality.
Having the knowledge about these benefits, do you want to be left out? Take advantage and immerse into de AR/VR learning solution. Train employees in a totally different, cost-effective, and time-reducing way. Contact us to know more about it.