Contrary to what one might think, it is not in video games that virtual reality is developing the most, but rather in the professional environment. The price of the device and material needs have finally propelled this technology into the business world.
The training sector is now undergoing its digital transformation, choosing virtual reality to address recurring issues: training time, costs, immersion and motivation. virtual reality to overcome recurring problems: training time, costs, immersion and motivation. For this type of device, the benefits are enormous and the ROI is easily calculated.
As presented by Google in a study conducted in its Daydream Labs laboratory, virtual reality training offers significant advantages in the learning process, particularly in comparison with traditional theoretical courses. Interactivity and immersion allow for a better grasp of a process and/or work environment.
Of course, virtual reality training is a complement that cannot replace field experience, but it is an excellent introduction.
The benefits of virtual reality training
The first advantage of virtual reality is that it can simulate or capture any environment in 360° and script it. For example, by recreating situations that are rarely repeatable or impossible to simulate in real conditions, we ensure that the employee performs the right actions at the right time. The scenarios are fully customisable and allow for a multitude of possibilities. Once in real-life conditions, the trainee knows the procedures to adopt.
Cost is of course another major advantage in adopting virtual reality training. The price of traditional training is high, does not always cover all areas, is all too often theoretical and must be delivered for each employee. Its cost is therefore multiplied by the number of learners. Once in place, virtual reality training can be used and repeated as many times as desired. It is therefore a considerable saving of time and money for the training structure and for the learner.
Another advantage is that the interactivity of certain virtual reality solutions makes it possible to gauge the operator's physical or mental capacity to adapt. Indeed, technical gestures are sometimes necessary and can be exhausting or even impossible for some people. Similarly, certain working environments may not be suitable (sound or visual). VR can therefore be used to quickly detect a person's inability to work in a given field.
Finally, motivation is a real advantage in the adoption of virtual reality training. The fun and immersive aspect makes this solution very popular with users who adopt it quickly.
A virtual reality headset for every purpose
Depending on the training needs, different types of virtual reality headsets will be used.
For a simple sound and visual immersion in the context of the discovery of a profession or a work environment, we will favour headsets like the Samsung Gear VR. Used with a high-end Samsung smartphone, it is perfectly sufficient for 360° immersion. It has a small touch-sensitive remote control that allows for some interaction, including menu navigation.
If the training extends to manual tasks, then headsets such as the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift should be considered. Although more expensive, they allow full interactivity and greater immersion. Sensor beacons locate the operator in a space of several square metres. Joysticks allow the operator to interact with 3D content: wearing, moving, activating elements and the whole thing is connected to a powerful computer as it is the most advanced device in terms of training.
Virtual reality training has a bright future ahead of it
We can see that virtual reality has moved on from its experimental aspect to become a truly relevant tool for training. More and more multinationals are using this type of device to offer their employees quality, interactive training that immerses them in different work contexts. The benefits are now measurable and virtual reality continues to convince more and more training providers.
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Discover the guide to virtual reality for training.