Virtual Reality Employee Training: Is Your Workforce Ready?

Remember the Nintendo Virtual Boy? We do! Epic failure, right? Still, Nintendo and Sega’s pioneering values set the ground for the development of VR as we see it today. For over forty years, virtual reality has been used by the entertainment, medical, armed forces, aviation, and automobile industries for training purposes. In the mid-2010s, virtual experiences gained traction in the educational world and are now being used for virtual reality employee training.

We can all agree that technology is great but not all employees are created equal and thus are not equally tech-savvy. So, how can you figure out whether your employees are ready, willing, and able to dive into an immersive virtual experience? The first and the best thing you can do is survey the audience, which is typically employees at your company. They’ll be able to tell you how comfortable they are with learning new skills and knowledge through the use of VR.

Why Choose VR Technology?

Virtual reality is the most immersive of all learning technologies. This is because the user gets completely enveloped in an alternate ‘universe’. They view this new environment with the help of a headset or head-mounted device (HMD). The device incorporates head tracking, which means that anywhere you look there is something to see and explore. VR can be used to:

  • Make training fun and inventive
  • Remove the fear of failure for your employees
  • Create real-life scenarios while removing the need to leave the office
  • Emulate learning-by-doing
  • Improve knowledge retention
  • Allow ‘at-your-own-pace’ learning

Considering the high proportion of millennial workers filling up the corporation ranks today, using VR in employee training makes a lot of sense. This generation of employees are essentially born with mobile devices in their hands and are very tech-savvy. So you’ll likely be successful in introducing this innovative learning method into your company culture.

Check the Data

If you surveyed your workforce about the possible inclusion of VR technology for learning purposes, you likely have some resulting data. Look at the numbers, the comments, and suggestions that employees are offering. Analyzing the information you receive from your staff will enable you to take an educated decision.

Virtual Training Integration in the Workplace

To find the right VR technology for your business model you’ll need to consider what the training course goals might be. Aligning your business goals with employee needs will help you narrow down your choices. Next, think about what type of experience you want to offer. What is the end-goal or desired learning outcomes? Are you looking to build a simulation that mimics real-life situations or provide an in-depth product knowledge training session? Answering these questions will further chisel out what VR platform fits your needs.

Once you have chosen the VR tech, see how you can incorporate it into your company’s employee training culture. VR can complement existing classroom-style and e-Learning modules. It can be very useful for all kinds of topics such as:

  • Learning to use heavy machinery
  • New trainee onboarding
  • Solving customer service issues
  • Preparing items for customers
  • Learning to use a customized ordering system

You can use VR as a simulation, a game, and anything in between. The only downside is that virtual reality training requires on-site presence and, of course, acquiring the VR system. Still, after the initial investment, VR can be personalized for different departments and various learning needs.

The most appealing aspect of virtual reality employee training is the fun factor. People naturally enjoy learning through play. So, finding the right balance between providing valuable information and entertainment is crucial. A well-built simulation will offer job-relevant knowledge, in-game rewards, social interaction, and the proper level of challenge so that players don’t get bored or feel overwhelmed.

Beware of VR Downsides

As futuristic as this technology might seem, it is still in its incipient stages. While most people enjoy the experience, some can feel adverse effects such as motion sickness. Plus, others are reluctant to shut out their surroundings in order to enter an environment they’re not familiar with. Keeping learning sessions short can minimize motion sickness and help learners conquer their fear.

We’ve also mentioned the cost. Upfront, VR technology can require a significant investment, but the long-term benefits to company growth are undeniable. It is important to consider all the advantages will be gained and how they will impact your return on investment.

In any case, be sure to do your homework before deciding to jump on the virtual boat. Professional services are readily available to help reconcile your budget, business goals, and employee needs. Contact Designing Digitally to learn more about custom virtual reality training today.

Stats that Prove the Power of eLearning in Corporate Training

These days a lot of individuals and companies are relying on eLearning to gain a competitive advantage. This is because eLearning is revolutionizing how people learn, their mentalities about continuing education, and how employers can create a learning and development culture that benefits both the company and taskforce.

Elearning makes great use of new technologies by combining hardware, software, and educational theories. The results are higher employee engagement, increased productivity and knowledge retention rates, increased job satisfaction, and high cost-effectiveness for the business. Elearning’s success is largely due to the wide variety of delivery methods: online (through various platforms), computer-based (on the learner’s computer), and mobile (phones, tablets, e-readers).

The eLearning industry has grown exponentially starting with the year 2000. By 2017, employee training grew by 900% due to eLearning. Companies all over the world are implementing new methods of training, continuously reaching away from traditional classroom settings. Because there are more and more cases that sociologists and data analysts can look at, eLearning stats are correctly depicting how the corporate training world is changing. Here are some facts and stats about the eLearning industry today, and how it’s transforming the approach and outlook of teachers and learners.

  1. Elearning Saves Time and Costs

Current statistics for eLearning show that employees save between 40% and 60% more time when using an eLearning platform. Learners save travel time, bypass classroom formalities, cut-down on distractions, and are able to access the desired learning module on-the-go. This also eliminates associated costs for travel and instructor accommodations.

  1. Elearning Increases Business Revenue

A good business owner knows that business revenue can be increased in many ways. Investing in eLearning is a big step you can make towards increasing revenue. Online learning stats are showing that for $1/per employee invested in corporate training, you get $30 back. This happens because online learning allows employees to learn key concepts fast, and apply them in their job immediately.

According to the Association for Talent Development, 2500 companies reported that running eLearning training programs showed a revenue increase per employee of 218%, while their profit margins saw a 24% increase.

  1. Employee Knowledge Retention is Higher with Elearning

According to the Research Institute of America, learner knowledge retention oscillates between 25% and 60% when engaged in an eLearning application. This is a huge improvement from classroom-based retention rates that only yielded between 8% and 10% results. The fact that employees can choose their own learning path is a big factor in improved knowledge retention. They don’t feel pressured to learn, as in-class might induce. They feel less inclined to focus on competition and more on deepening their understanding. And, they can go back and relearn any concept when needed.

  1. Employees Learn More with Elearning

Interestingly, less time spent in training actually allows employees to learn more. Employees learn 5 times more because they are able to engage and enjoy learning whenever and wherever they want. The high mobility factor that eLearning provides is the main driver for faster on-the-job results.

  1. Employees Are More Engaged with Elearning

Elearning technologies help companies increase employee engagement within the workplace by 18%. If employees find the eCourses engaging, their learning curve is more efficient, thus forming a more focused and productive workplace.

  1. Elearning often Utilizes Microlearning

One of the major reasons eLearning is so well-liked by companies and employees alike is due to the use of micromodules. Learning high-value concepts delivered in bite-sized chunks helps fast-track employee understanding and on-the-job application. Microlearning increases learner efficiency by 17% and 94% of eLearners prefer this method specifically because it integrates well with daily job tasks.

  1. eLearning Is Growing Fast

As mentioned, in the last 17 years or so, the eLearning industry as adopted by companies has grown by 900%. This is an incredible advancement by anyone’s standards. Both employees and employees are feeling the impact of eLearning and the resulting benefits.

What is Driving eLearning Growth?

The speedy emergence of new technologies is definitely adding momentum to eLearning industry growth. Certain platforms and delivery methods are proving to be more efficient than others:

AI/ML

Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning are two of the fastest-growing element embraced by the eLearning industry. AI and ML are helping companies customize their employee training courses. This is a huge advantage, as employees are enabled to follow their own learning curve and not have to learn the same uninspiring content geared towards the general public.

VR/AR

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality are also making great strides in infiltrating corporate training programs. These learning delivery methods immerse the learner in true to life environments while taking away the risks associated with on-the-job learning.

Mobile Performance

The technical performance of handheld devices is steadily climbing. Thus, learners prefer using these devices for acquiring new skills and knowledge, browse for answers or references, and complete their online training.

Video-Based Learning

Video learning is bursting at the seams with studies showing that 75% of employees prefer this delivery over reading information. Video-based courses have a high engagement rate, can hold learner focus for longer and is easily-digestible.

Personalized Learning Paths

If you’re looking to incorporate eLearning into your employee learning strategy, then personalized learning paths will get you there faster. Giving users the option to choose their own way through the learning content empowers them to customize their experience. This has a direct impact on job productivity and satisfaction.

Conclusion

Elearning stats don’t lie! The online training industry is growing and discovering new ways of delivering better content, thanks to the data analysis made possible through technological advancements. Getting in on this trend is essential to the growth of any business looking to stay ahead of their competitors.

If you are in need of engaging eLearning that will produce impressive results for your employees, contact Designing Digitally today to get started! eLearning White Paper: Elearning in Corporate Training Report: Top Benefits, Trends, & Predictions