Virtual Reality (VR) has emerged as the latest buzz term in corporate training circles. Ever since corporate giants like UPS and Walmart have integrated the technology in their training, more businesses have shown interest in learning about how they can implement it in their own organizations.
The benefits of VR training, such as offering a risk-free training environment, improved retention and engagement, the ability to replicate real-life situations, and cost-effectiveness make it highly desirable.
However, there is still a lot of confusion among businesses regarding how they can start integrating the technology in their training.
If that sounds familiar, you’ve come to the right place.
In this article, we will talk about the initial steps you must take to successfully integrate VR in your organization’s training initiatives.
Understand Your Training Needs
While VR training is extremely beneficial, it is not applicable to all training scenarios. In fact, even for those businesses that find VR training relevant to their curriculum, it will make up for only a part of the training.
For this reason, before the process of implementation of VR in your training starts, consider where (and if) it is required.
If, for instance, you are offering your employees a course in search engine optimization, VR training has little relevance in this case.
Start With A Small Experiment Group (Proof Of Concept)
Once you have determined the areas of your training that can be improved with the integration of VR, it is time to test your hypothesis.
Even if you have the management approval for a complete implementation of VR wherever it is relevant, it pays to test first in order to preserve their confidence. Not to forget, dealing with unforeseen challenges will be easier when things are being done at a smaller scale.
Think about the one job function of your employees that will be most improved with the help of VR training. For example, in the case of UPS, it was training their drivers for contingencies on the road.
With a narrow focus, you will be able to ensure optimum implementation of the technology which will, in turn, ensure acceptance of the technology by the stakeholders and eventual adoption by other training verticals.
Start Building VR Training Content
This step can prove to be a bit tricky, especially for those who have limited experience with the technologies and tools used in creating VR courses. For this reason, the help of VR learning experts is recommended at this point.
With their help, execute the following steps:
- Getting The Infrastructure In Place
From 360-degree recording cameras to VR headsets, choosing the right equipment is the key to providing an engaging VR experience to your learners.
Storyboarding is similar to the authoring aspect of developing traditional course material. In this step, you will think about all the possible situations that you want to train your employees for. Making sure this step is performed with attention to detail will help you in the steps that follow.
If you have done storyboarding right, the shoot day(s) will be pretty smooth and quick. It pays to remember to come back to the office with a little bit extra footage. This way, you can edit out the stuff you don’t need during the editing stages while being sure that you will not fall short of video material and will not have to waste time on another shoot day.
If you have successfully executed the previous steps, by now, you must have a VR course ready to roll out. If you are planning to provide the VR headsets to your employees for training, you must also already know which VR platform you want to use.
For others, there are a host of VR platforms including offerings from Oculus, Samsung Gear, HTC Vive, Daydream, among many others. Depending upon the preferences of your learners, you can publish your course on the relevant platforms.